Sunday, February 28, 2010

Book 23 of 2010: Predatoress by Emma Gabor

Written as a memoir by the author, Predatoress tells the tale of 18-year-old Emma Gabor, who is turned into a vampiress, and her adventures. Turned into one of the undead at the start of the book, Emma begins feeding on innocent victims, but chooses them carefully, such as homeless people that would not be missed. She quickly becomes bored with running around at night alone and decides that turning her best friend into a vampiress as well will help keep her company. This turns out to be both good and bad for young Emma, as her friend is upset with being turned into a vampiress, and also makes things more complicated for Emma in the long run. Later, they turn two more of their girlfriends and start hunting as a group of four. Emma soon meets Zoltan Szabo, a genetic researcher her girlfriends have lusted after for years, and he immediately falls for Emma, unaware that she is one of the undead. Emma is hopeful that once she tells Zoltan of her condition that they can come up with a cure for vampirism so that she can fix all the damage she has done. Of course, she doesn't think too much about what will happen when a non-vampire finds out her secret!

Predatoress appears to be the first book by Emma Gabor. Honestly, it felt like the author was haphazardly throwing down as many thoughts as she could before forgetting them, but unfortunately she forgot to add in a really good plot or to flesh out the story. I wouldn't say Gabor doesn't have a future as a writer, as I think with practice she could easily turn her ideas into a well-written story. However, many scenes within this novel I couldn't see possibly happening in real life, and even fiction should be believable to the reader. For example, Zoltan invites Emma to a dance. While there, Emma gets hungry, and corners someone in the ladies' room. Yet, nobody notices the other girl's absence from the dance until it is over. Once the dance has concluded, Zoltan takes Emma back to his place where she loses her virginity to him. He then returns Emma to her parents' house, where her mother has fallen asleep downstairs while waiting for her. Emma's mother is upset that she has been brought home at six in the morning. She asks Zoltan why he brought Emma home so late, and he proceeds to tell her that they fell in love and then made love, and tries to comfort the mother by telling her that they used protection. Then Emma's father joins the room, Zoltan proposes to Emma, and everyone is so excited by the prospect of a wedding that the trouble Emma was in is forgotten abruptly. For me, anyway, this scene just seems bizarre. I mean, what parents in their right mind would handle a scenario like this in this fashion? This is just one of many examples of such things in Predatoress. I did find myself enjoying the book at times, j ust because the scenes struck me as so absurd they were laughable. For those who don't care as much for plot and just like to gobble up as many vampire titles as possible, I'd recommend this book, but for anyone else... do yourselves a favor and pass over this title for one of the several thousand other vampire titles on the shelves today.

Contains: Adult Situations, Blood Sucking

Review also posted a

Book 22 of 2010: Wolf Tales 11 by Kate Douglas

No image of this yet as I was proofing it for Kate. This was probably one of the most emotional books in the series yet. I cried several times and had chills running through me at various sections. Some of the characters are just completely amazing me!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Book 21 of 2010: Happy Hour of the Damned by Mark Henry

Review to follow...

Movie 9 of 2010: Crazy Eights

Extremely creepy and disturbing movie. Unfortunately I didn't quite comprehend the final scene of the movie. Wish it had been more clear as I'm left feeling like I missed something of major importance, yet can't figure out what. Definitely worth watching though and maybe other viewers can help me figure out what happened at the very end.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Book 20 of 2010: Creeptych by John Everson

This was an unreleased chapbook I was proofing for an author friend. More to come after publication.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Book 19 of 2010: Shift by Rachel Vincent

Faythe and her werecat family and friends are back in yet another adventure in this fifth installment of Rachel Vincent's werecat series. During the continued debate from the previous novel, Prey, regarding whether Sanders will keep his spot as Chair of the Territorial Council or not, the clan is attacked by a new group of shifters, the Thunderbirds. It appears that the Thunderbirds are specifically targeting the tabbies of the group, so they try to sneak off to safety, only to end up having the youngest, Kaci, and also Faythe, snatched away. Faythe convinces the Thunderbirds to allow her to seek out the person they are truly hunting and in return asks for herself and Kaci to be set free. They agree to this and let Faythe go in order to fulfill her mission. Faythe's father sends both Marc and Jace to help her. Here the tension builds as, if you recall from the previous book, Faythe and Jace had a one night stand that Marc (who is Faythe's boyfriend) does not yet know about... and of course, that one night stand has led to some mixed and confused emotions for Faythe. Will the trio being able to complete their mission, or will all of the emotions come crashing down on them, and cause them to get delayed in completing the task at hand?

The werecat series continues to enthrall me, which means I'm going to be saddened once I read the next and final book. The Thunderbirds were a great addition to the "cast" of this series and I am suspecting we will hear more about them in the next novel. There was a major emphasis on the Thunderbirds, obviously, since they were the big "baddies" of the book, but there was also a major focus on the love triangle that is going on between Marc, Faythe, and Jace. I kept waiting for Faythe to finally spill the beans to Marc regarding what had occurred between her and Jace and was shocked by how the story finally got laid out on the table. Not nearly as shocked as Marc, of course, but this sure built up the tension level in the book! I'm not sure whether Marc will ever forgive Faythe, and yet I don't know if she truly could love Jace after knowing how things are between her and Marc now. There are many loose ends regarding this and also the battles going on between the various groups within the series for Vincent to wrap up in the final novel of this series. I'm highly looking forward to it. Shift, along with the rest of this series, would be a great addition to any library's urban fantasy collection. Vincent is a must read to this genre's fans!

Contains: Adult Situations, Adult Language, Violence

Review also posted at

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Book 18 of 2010: Scissors by Ray Garton

Ray Garton's latest Leisure release, Scissors, delves deep into the mind of Stuart Mullond. At the start of the novel, Stuart vividly recalls a surgery performed on him when he was a young boy. Stuart's memory of the surgery is a bit different than the way his mom, who was in the room with him during surgery, remembers it. His memories are a bit more frightening and have left him traumatized ever since the procedure was done. Now he is starting to see the doctor in question, Dr. Furgeson, in various places when he is out and even around his own home. What's even more disturbing is that the doctor is always carrying around the pair of scissors from Stuart's memories. Stuart can hear the *snick, snick, snick* of the scissors and also hears Furgeson telling him that his son needs to go through the same procedure. Stuart will do anything to save his son, even if everyone around him thinks he's crazy!

Garton had me enthralled with the story of Stuart Mullond from beginning to end. I was glued to the pages, needing to find out what was going on in Stuart's mind. At times he would idly spend hours and hours in his garage doodling pictures that most would consider comic-like, but at times, the pictures seemed to come to life. Were the pictures truly coming to life or was it all a figment of Stuart's imagination? Garton completely screws with your head as you read along to find out the answer to this question and also leaves you wondering throughout if Stuart is as crazy as his family thinks. Parts of this story had me so weirded out that I actually had chills running through me. No horror book has EVER done that to me! It creeped me out and messed with my head. That is the key to a great horror novel! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations, Violence, Mild Gore

Review also posted at

Also posted at is a review I did with Ray Garton.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Book 17 of 2010: Wonderland 1: King of Hearts by Cheyenne McCray

Book Description:

After being cheated on yet again, full-figured Alice O'Brien resolves to enjoy men sexually, refusing to involve her heart. When she tumbles down a rabbit hole, she lands in a beautiful, erotic world, surrounded by gorgeous men who relish her voluptuous curves… Men who want to tie her up and play sex games--talk about a dream come true!

Only King Jarronn deliberately lured Alice to his kingdom to be his mate. He has every intention of capturing her for himself and making her his Queen of Hearts.

My Opinion:

After having just read Alice in Wonderland and Alice in Zombieland, reading King of Hearts was a very good change of pace... I'm used to having hot sex scenes in the majority of the books I read and this one balanced it out a bit for all three titles. King of Hearts is filled to the brim with Alice's sexual adventures in Wonderland as the King of Hearts becomes her Dom and trains her as sub in preparation for her to become his Queen. Even with all the sex scenes though, there was still plenty of plot within the book to not make it so overly ridiculous. Also, there were several references throughout to the original Alice in Wonderland story for readers to make the connections between the two. Such a fun first book in this series... I'm looking forward to reading the remainder of McCray's Wonderland adventures.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Movie 8 of 2010: It's Alive

Decent movie... though very strange. Definitely shows how attached a mother can get to a newborn baby quickly and everything she is willing to do for it. Some of the scenes were quite disturbing as I couldn't believe the baby was actually doing some of the stuff it was doing. The ending also seemed a bit rushed and abrupt and left me wondering what was going to happen to one of the characters. Was creepy though and I jumped a couple times because I wasn't expecting stuff to happen. Worth watching at least once for horror fans.

The trailer appears to show some cut snippets from the movie as well so it must've been intended to be longer initially.

Book 16 of 2010: When the Night Comes Down by Various Authors

This was an anthology I edited to help out some people... can't say anything more about it at this time. :)

Edited to add review now that book is released...

Sixth in the Dark Arts Books anthology series, When the Night Comes Down allows readers to take a peek into the writing styles of four talented authors: Joseph D'Lacey; Bev Vincent; Robert E. Weinberg; and Nate Kenyon. Within the collected stories, any horror reader should find at least one they truly enjoy, and many will find several. I had at least one favorite by each of the included authors. Joseph D'Lacey's "The Unwrapping of Alastair Perry" details a time in Alastair's life during which he peels off the layers of his skin in order to morph into other lifeforms and experience things that these other beings (whether a person of the opposite sex, reptilian creature, etc...) would experience. In "Knock 'Em Dead", Bev Vincent takes readers into the life of an author that feels his booksignings must be cursed, as, at each one, someone ends up dying. Another great Vincent story in this collection is "Something In Store", where a bookstore manages to "come to life" as it expands due to the owners' desires. Robert E. Weinberg's "Elevator Girls" makes convention attendees think twice about entering an elevator with an attractive looking girl, as his "elevator girls" have a bit more going for them beyond good looks and seductive appeal. Nate Kenyon puts a new twist on the tiresome zombie stories in "Gravedigger". A couple of young guys have found that dead bodies are a good way to smuggle drugs; however, they hadn't expected that the drugs might have some ill-wanted effects on the corpses they had used. These are just a handful of the great stories that I enjoyed in When the Night Comes Down,and based on what kinds of subgenres readers enjoy, many will have differing favorites. This collection, along with all of the Dark Arts Books anthologies, is a great way for readers to discover new voices in the horror industry. Many anthologies only allow readers to get a glimpse of an author, with only one story by each author, or are collected works of a particular author. Unlike these anthologies, each author gets his own section to showcase several offerings. What John Everson and Bill Breedlove have created with this publishing company is a much different approach, giving each author an opportunity to shine as they introduce readers to their various writing styles through the inclusion of multiple stories. I would recommend this collection as well as any of the other books in Dark Arts' line of books to all horror fans and feel they would make a great addition to all libraries.


Bill Breedlove -
Powered By Brains (introduction)

Joseph D'Lacey -
The Unwrapping of Alastair Perry
Etoile's Tree
Morag's Fungus
The Quiet Ones

Bev Vincent -
Silvery Moon
Knock 'Em Dead
Something In Store
Purgatory Noir

Robert E. Weinberg -
Elebator Girls
The One Answer That Really Matters

Nate Kenyon -
Breeding the Demons
One With the Music
The Buzz of a Thousand Wings

Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations, Mild Gore, Violence

Review also posted at

Friday, February 12, 2010

Book 15 of 2010: Alice in Zombieland by Lewis Carroll & Nickolas Cook

Alice in Zombieland is a parody of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Unlike the original, Alice doesn't fall down a rabbit hole, but rather into a grave in a graveyard where she enjoys spending her time. While in Zombieland, Alice deals with her own flesh rotting as well as hair loss. She can't quite comprehend what is going on with her and as she runs into the inhabitants of Zombieland (including the Dead Hare, the Corpse Turtle, and the Black Rat who takes the place of the White Rabbit from Wonderland) she grows even more disturbed by her surroundings and just wants to find a way to return home.

Since I had just read the original, I was able to compare the two pretty closely. Unfortunately, I felt like I was just reading the same books back to back. Cook takes Carroll's classic story and changes a few passages here and there, but overall it's not that different from the original story. There were some added scenes, however, that were very good. One that sticks out in my mind is the game of zombie croquet, where instead of the flamingos and hedgehogs that were used as the tools of the croquet game in Wonderland, this version was played with dismembered legs for mallets and zombie heads for balls. It's a grotesquely fun scene that zombie fans should eat up! Alice in Zombieland, though an interesting concept, just didn't blow me away. Had the story been re-written completely with general references to the original telling of the story, I think it could have been a cult classic. Still, I think zombie fanatics will at least want to give this a read to check out the croquet game as well as some of the other intriguing scenes.

Review also posted at

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Book 14 of 2010: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

Read this in anticipation to the new Alice in Wonderland movie coming out by Tim Burton. I had never read this, though have seen a few movie versions and while reading it I kept picturing scenes from one particular TV version that I've since found on YouTube (thanks to BardandQueen for that!) chopped into snippets and have been watching over the course of several days. With the book however, I was a little disappointed as I had kept hearing that the book was so much darker than the Disney movie that was released way back when, but when reading it... I didn't really find it to be so dark. I am curious now to find out what Tim Burton does with things though, however I have since read that his movie isn't based on the book itself, but on the adventures of Alice as a teenager when she goes BACK to Wonderland. Still glad that I took the time to read it though just to familiarize myself with the story once again and in more detail and have started reading other Alice spin-off books to prepare me even more for the movie release.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Book 13 of 2010: My Soul to Save by Rachel Vincent

My Soul To Save starts off with our heroine, Kaylee Cavanaugh, and her boyfriend, Nash, attending the concert of pop star, Eden, with free tickets from Nash's brother, who had once dated Addison Page, Eden's opening act. During Eden's act, she collapses on stage. Kaylee prepares for one of her screams to tear out of her, but notices it's not coming and assumes Eden is going to live, but a grim reaper then appears. Kaylee doesn't understand why she has no scream until she realizes that Eden has no soul. After this discovery she finds out that Addison will be the next victim to die without a soul, and they work together to keep death from taking her before her soul can be returned to her body.

Much darker than the first book, My Soul To Keep, this novel has the characters exploring the Netherworld, home to numerous new demons for Kaylee and friends to contend with. Kaylee has had to learn a lot over the course of just a few months to prepare herself for her new life as a bean sidhe, banshee. Vincent details this character growth in vivid detail as she deals with the challenges she faces in order to save Addison as well as typical teen problems, such as arguing with her dad and being grounded. I thought the changes in Kaylee in this book definitely moved this series forward and will make it stronger as a whole. I'm looking forward to what lies ahead for our heroine and her friends in Vincent's next release. Highly recommended!

Contains: Mild Adult Language, Teen Death Scenes

Review also posted at

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Movie 7 of 2010: Trailer Park of Terror

A little slow at points and quite a bit gory in other scenes. I had a hard time stomaching a couple of parts where the skin was being ripped and peeled from people's bodies. (Amazing how I can read about this stuff all day long, but seeing it is a whole 'nother ball game!) Overall this was a fun movie. I thought it was going to be a bit more humorous than it was, but the only thing I really found that funny was the soundtrack at times. The music was fun and the lyrics at times made me laugh. Worth checking out if you aren't expecting the new bestselling horror flick and just want something that is a bit of fun. I mean... can you truly go wrong with a bunch of redneck "zombies"?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Book 12 of 2010: My Zombie Valentine by Various Authors

My Zombie Valentine is an anthology consisting of four paranormal romance novellas by four different authors. Each story has some kind of zombie element to it, although it may or may not be the main theme of the story. The book's title may lead some readers to believe it's actually framed around Valentine's Day, but there was only one reference in the whole book to the holiday that I can recall.

The first story, "Bring Out Your Dead", by Katie MacAlister, was previously published in another anthology, Just One Sip, that was themed all around vampires. So as you can guess, the novella combines both vampires and zombies. The main character of this story, Ysabelle, helps counsel newly formed zombies to get them adjusted to their "new life". Supporting characters include Sebastian, a vampire who claims that Ysabelle is his beloved, and Sally, Ysabelle's spirit guide who has an annoying habit of talking in Franglais, which is some horrid mix of English and French. As a fan of MacAlister's Dark Ones series I was looking forward to this short story, but unfortunately, it fell short compared to her full-length novels. It did have humorous moments and there was quite a bit of action, but it just didn't live up to my expectations of MacAlister's writing. Also, the character of Sally was rather frustrating, and I'm sure it's even worse for those that know even less of the French language than myself. Readers who aren't familiar with at least a little French will miss out on complete sections of conversation with no explanation of what was just said. I know that the character was tossed in to be funny, but if the readers don't understand what is going on, there really is no point in adding such a character.

My favorite novella in the anthology was "Gentleman Prefer Voodoo" by Angie Fox. In this story Amie, who runs a voodoo shop, is talked into going after love one more time. Instead of trying to search out Mr. Right the old-fashioned way, however, Amie decides to try her hand at a love spell. Unfortunately, the spell works a little too well. Mr. Right comes knocking at her door later that night all naked and covered in dirt after having been buried in the grave for hundreds of years. Amie is immediately attracted to the zombie, but yet, she is having a hard time wrapping her head around the fact that her soulmate is actually a zombie and she makes every attempt to reverse her spell to send him back to the grave. This story is absolutely hysterical! I loved Fox's dialogue between Amie and the zombie, especially in the scenes where she was trying to kill him. Another favorite scene was after Amie had sent him to get clothes and when he came back his clothes were so skin tight that she was still having trouble looking at him without getting so hot and bothered. I just thought Fox's style was very quirky! I had only had the pleasure of reading one other novel by Fox prior to this, and wasn't expecting to enjoy this story nearly as much as I did, but I'm definitely looking forward to reading more by Fox after this.

"Zombiewood Confidential" by Marianne Mancusi was the third story in this anthology. This is the story of Scarlett Patterson, who takes the job of being a makeup artist for a B-horror movie being produced by Romeo George (nice little tribute to George Romero there). While on the set, strange things start to happen and the zombie "extras" start getting a bit more into their character than is expected... even when the film isn't rolling. One even attempts to attack the lead of the movie, Mason Marks, who happens to be Scarlett's celebrity crush since she was a teenager. On top of that, lots of people have started disappearing from the set. What could possibly be causing all this chaos? I always enjoy Mancusi's works and this was no exception. She always tosses in little pop culture references, like the Romero thing mentioned above, which makes the story more personal to me when I catch them. Also, the romance that built between the makeup artist and the movie star in this particular story was so unlikely from the start that it was kind of like a fairy tale romance and I always enjoy those. They are sweet, yet while being chased by zombies... not as sweet as one would hope... damn those interruptions! The climax of the story and how the zombies ended up being destroyed in the end was absolutely brilliant! The thought process behind that was very creative... kudos to Mancusi for that idea. I will definitely continue reading books by her as they are released.

Last, but not least in this collection, was "Every Part of You" by Lisa Cach. This story started off with our two main characters, Angelica and Tom, meeting in a plastic surgeon's office. Angelica was having some minor surgery performed and while having it done the doctor offered to remove her worry lines for her free of charge by injecting Phi-Tox into her skin. Shortly thereafter there began being reports on the news of outbreaks of women majorly craving sugar, stores running out of ice cream, and pretty soon candy stores being broken into. Angelica, and new boyfriend Tom, end up investigating and determine that this "sugar-craving zombies" appear to be relating back somehow to the Phi-Tox injections and Angelica herself is in danger. When I first started reading this story I honestly wasn't sure where it was going. It seemed to just be going on about plastic surgery and how Angelica and Tom were getting together. Don't get me wrong, the story was cute, but it seemed like just a sweet little contemporary romance. I had no idea where the story was going! Then... the story took a crazy turn when Angelica and Tom had to go to the hospital and the women there were begging for their husband to get more "skiiiiittles" out of the vending machines and another's breast implant just plopped out right there on the floor! It went from sweet and funny to pure insanity! I hadn't ever read anything from Lisa Cach before, but if any of her other paranormal stories are as funny as this I will definitely need to check them out.

Overall I truly enjoyed this collection of four stories. I think all fans of the paranormal romance genre will. Highly Recommended!

Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations, Sex

Review also posted at

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Movie 6 of 2010: Zombieland

Enjoyed this one quite a bit, but I was actually expecting it to be even funnier than it was by all the hype it got. I guess that always makes me expect more from a movie and a lot of times leaves me at least slightly disappointed. Definitely had some funny moments though. And scary, for me anyway, with the disturbing zombie clown side I am scared of clowns. *shudder* Of course, if I had been in the movie instead of Woody I would've just stuck with the Snowballs instead of feeling I had to go in search of a Twinkie... I'm not a fan! ;) Definitely fun for the comic horror movie fans though and worth seeing.

Book 11 of 2010: Loving the Undead by Various Authors

Loving the Undead consists of twenty-five short stories of undead "love". The majority of the stories are about zombies, but there are also stories with vampires, ghouls, and ghosts to fulfill the desires of all paranormal enthusiasts. It's hard to define this book as horror, paranormal romance, or urban fantasy as it has a little bit of it all, so readers of any of these genres should find something within the pages of this book to enjoy. Some of my personal favorites were "The Sheik and I" by Leslie Brown, where an employee of the month won her own personal zombie for a year; "In the Closet" by E.C. Myers, where there was a case of mistaken identity at a Halloween party; "An Acquired Taste" by Mark Henry, the story that gives a first peek at Henry's Amanda Feral zombie series (though at the time her name was spelled Amanda Farrel); and "Wilma's Passion" by Michael A. Kechula, which shows us just how far a woman will go for zombie love. Those are just a few of the great stories collected within Loving the Undead. Some of the stories are definitely weaker than others and some readers may prefer other stories to the ones I liked, as humor typically appeals to me over the more serious stories. The biggest flaw with this collection was the numerous typos. I was able to look past this, however, to enjoy the works within, and I think this would be a good anthology for any library to have in their collection. Recommended.

Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations

Review also posted at

Monday, February 1, 2010

Movie 5 of 2010: The Proposal

Yet another fun romantic comedy featuring Sandra Bullock. She never disappoints me. I would recommend this movie to anyone that enjoys this genre of movies. The ending is pretty predictable, but I think that's the case for pretty much all romantic comedies out there. There are some surprises within though and lots of laughs.