It’s my birthday! Have a book on me.

It’s my 40th birthday, and I want YOU to get the presents…
These titles are all on KU, but today only, you can get Blood and Rain and The Haunted Halls for just 99 cents each, or grab copies of Becoming, Slush, and Out of Range for FREE!
Here are the link to each title:
Thanks for downloading and reading.  And reviewing, if you feel compelled to do so.
#ShareTheHorror #ScarySaturdays #HorrorFiction

(Book Review) THE WARBLERS by Amber Fallon

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After the sun would go down, I’d hear them out there, back by the shed, shrieking their twisted warbling cries out there in the night, followed by squeals of whatever prey they’d managed to hunt down.

When his rural farm becomes overrun with terrifying beasts called Warblers capable of eating livestock, dogs, and even people, 14-year-old Dell McDale’s life is torn asunder. He watches through the eyes of a boy on the verge of becoming a man as his father is forced to go to awful lengths to rid the family home of the infestation, culminating in a confrontation between Dell and a local bully-turned-soldier on a night that will change everyone involved, forever.

The Warblers is a mysterious tale of a young man learning what fear can do to people and what happens, when in order to fight monsters, one must side with another monster.

My Review:

The WarblersThe Warblers by Amber Fallon

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

THE WARBLERS (Eraserhead Press, 2017) by Amber Fallon is a novella that surprised me. After reading her novella, THE TERMINAL (Flesh Pulp Press, 2016), I thought I knew what to expect (horror, lots of action-filled horror), but with THE WARBLERS, Fallon takes a different approach.

“Don’t be a fool, boy. Graveyard’s full up fools.”

The story is a coming-of-age yarn from the point of view of a 14-year-old boy named, Dell. Dell’s family’s farm is in danger from a group of vicious birds (the Warblers) that have taken up residence behind their shed. Dell’s pa decides to call for a “special” kind of help to eradicate the problem. That’s the gist of the tale, but within, there are so many nice bits and beats.

“I thought of the horses in front of my uncle’s carriage and how they had looked on smelling the warblers. I imagine we must’ve looked about the same way.”

I recently read THE BOTTOMS by Joe R. Lansdale, and I picked up a very similar vibe from Fallon’s story. That’s a fantastic compliment to the author. I was impressed with her style, her patience, and her ability to put together such a well-rounded story, full of characters and heart.
As with the aforementioned Lansdale book, THE WARBLERS isn’t really a horror story, and that’s okay. It’s a great piece of fiction, a wonderfully surprising novella that shows Fallon’s fearless versatility.

I would liked to have seen more of the viscous birds, but I know we can’t always get what we want. Oh, and the handler’s (you’ll know who I’m talking about when you read this book) were totally worthy of more book time, too. See, sometimes the problem is that author creates so much goodness, we want more. That’s a good thing.

I give THE WARBLERS 4-4.5 stars.
Definitely recommend this one to people who like great storytelling.

 

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Amber Fallon lives in a small town outside Boston, Massachusetts that she shares with her husband their two dogs. A techie by day and a horror writer by night, she’s also spent time as a bank manager, motivational speaker, produce wrangler, and apprentice butcher.  Her obsessions with sushi, glittery nail polish, and sharp objects have made her a recognized figure around the community.

She’s the author of The Terminal (Flesh Pulp Press, 2016), the forthcoming collection, TV Dinners From Hell,  and many other stories that have appeared in a variety of anthologies.

Follow her on Twitter: @Zombiegirl

Visit her blog: http://www.amberfallon.net

or listen to her podcast IT COOKS on Project Radio

View all my reviews

Update City: You are so gonna Get Rolfed for the next two years.

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These should be the next three releases you guys get from me…

A collection (Land of Bones), a novella (Follow Me Down), and my fourth novel (The Window).

After that, I have Waiting for Darkness (Blood and Rain sequel/novel #5) and August’s Eyes (novel #6).

I’ll have short stories in a number of upcoming anthologies, as well. Look for me in The Black Room Manuscripts 3 (Sinister Horror Company), VS: Extreme (Shadow Works Publishing), plus a couple of special publications that I can’t mention yet.

I have plans to attend Stoker Con in Providence, RI in March and (if I can make it) Scares That Care in August.

Stay tuned.

NEW RELEASE : Todd Keisling: UGLY LITTLE THINGS (Crystal Lake Publishing)

Happy release day!!!!  

ATK

 

Todd Keisling is a born storyteller, drawing the reader into artfully constructed narratives that scout the darker end of the literary spectrum with skill and bravado.  A pleasure to read, his stories linger well after the last page has been turned.  Excellent stuff.” –John Langan, Bram Stoker award-winning author of The Fisherman

“Keisling writes in the shadows, his words like that first long drag on a cigarette after work. I couldn’t help coming back for more, and before I knew it, that one story, that one cigarette, turned into the whole pack.” –Stephanie M. Wytovich, Bram Stoker award-winning author of Brothel and The Eighth

In Ugly Little Things, Todd Keisling ventures deep into the dark abyss of cosmic horror. What he finds there–or what’s found him–will terrify you. This varied collection is tailor-made for fans of existential dread. Prepare to face the void. Try not to scream.” –Brian Kirk, Bram Stoker Award-nominated author of We Are Monsters
 
“Todd Keisling’s promise delivers with Ugly Little Things. The only time you will dare to look away from the page is when you stop to look over your shoulder. He’s earned his right to sit on the shelf alongside King, Koontz, and Ketchum.” –Eryk Pruitt, author of Dirtbags and What We Reckon.
 
“The author has a keen, lucid understanding of suffering, which lends each plot-line extra heft and depth. These stories contain tenderly and humanely rendered characters who are drawn towards various forms of uncanny annihilation. After reading this excellent collection, I’m eagerly awaiting whatever Keisling produces next.” –Jon Padgett, author of The Secret of Ventriloquism

“One of the few perfect story collections I’ve ever read. Todd Keisling will keep you guessing page after page.” –Armand Rosamilia, author of the Dying Days series
My  review:
Todd Keisling’s short fiction is damn near perfect. He’s a writer that cares about his productions, each and every creepy little one. He has a knack for crafting short, explosive, mind-bending, heart-wrenching, and downright frightening stories. If you like dark fiction or love great writing, you need to read this collection.

I give it an overall rating of 4.5 stars.

*Note: I read most of these stories in their original, singular release.

Here are some notes about a few particular stories in the batch…

SAVING GRANNY FROM THE DEVIL 5/5

Little Toddy loves his Grandma. And he should have listened to her when she said not to play down the street. He should have listened to her when she warned him of the devil’s trickery. When Toddy roams too far from Grandma’s yard and runs into the bullies down the street it’s a curiously dead dog that comes to his rescue. If he saves your life, he’s gotta be your friend, right? And so it begins.

Keisling spills a lot of his own blood on the pages of this tale. Toddy and Grandma, and later on, Toddy’s girl, Erica, all come from a place not so untouchable, but from the author’s life. To incorporate such truths with such seamless ease into a fantastically dark vision is both scary and quite honestly, inspiring.

The fact that Keisling’s dark walk with the devil is as full and heavy hitting in such a relativity small piece is yet another testament to his storytelling ability.
He hit it out of the park with his last piece, When Karen Met Her Mountain, and he does so again with Saving Granny from the Devil. I absolutely loved this story.

RADIO FREE NOWHERE 3/5

Nice short piece here. I always like a good siren story. I know it’s a short story, but boy I wanted more. I didn’t get enough here to love it, but the fact that I want more tells you that what is there is pretty fun.

THE HARBINGER 4/5

This is the new story in Todd Keisling’s fantastic Ugly Little Things short story series. “The Harbinger” bleeds creepiness. Shades of Halloween III and Village of the Damned (a great mix IMHO), stirred with Keisling’s own demented imagination, bring this frightful tale of a strange little town to life.

WHEN KAREN MET HER MOUNTAIN 5/5

You want a prime example of how a short story should go? “When Karen Met Her Mountain” is what you’re looking for. Todd Keisling spins this little number like a seasoned pro (that’s right, your King’s, your Silva’s). Creating a complex character like Karen is not something every writer can do. From the pain of her past–her mistake, and her miscarriage—to the strained relationship with her husband, Martin, to her intertwined therapy sessions, Keisling’s “Karen” is one powerful package.

All of this and I haven’t even gotten to cult and the killings!
Building on the promise of the first story in his Ugly Little Things short story collection “Radio Free Nowhere”, Todd Keisling hammers it home with “When Karen Met Her Mountain”.

Seriously, if you dig the short fiction of King, David Silva, or Robert McCammon, Mr. Keisling’s “Mountain” is waiting to be your next great discovery.

THE OTHER LAND EXPRESS 4/5

The Other Land Express (Ugly Little Things # 5) by Todd Keisling is a fantastic little piece. Keisling builds a portrait of a boy (Gregory) who can’t be comfortable in his own skin. After his abusive father catches Gregory with his pants down during a video chat with another boy, Gregory takes a beating that serves as the last straw. Gregory packs up and heads west. He is leaving his father in his rear-view mirror. But is Gregory also leaving himself?
Enter John Doe. Enter the tribe of the Nobodies.
Welcome to the Other Land Express.

Shed your skin. You can be anyone you’d like.

Keisling’s tale takes a turn here, and I dare say it felt a bit like a Clive Barker joint.
I won’t give away anything, but you should definitely give this short story a read.
Keisling’s ability to inject such depth into his short fiction work is inspiring. My only gripe was that it ended before I was ready. I wanted to see more of the Other Land.
All in all, I give The Other Land Express a strong 4 stars

THE FINAL RECONCILIATION 4/5

Todd Keisling’s THE FINAL RECONCILIATION is a rock and roll nightmare set to the soundtrack of the end time. Take off your mask and rejoice!
This novella is strange, creepy, and filled with rock n’roll. What’s not to love?
Another feather in the cap for Mr. Keisling.

GO BUY THIS NOW! (Click the link below)