Get Rolfed Update City: Exclusive eBooks, Patreon, Limited Editions, Flame Tree, and more…

_A vital part of this generation._ - Btrian Keene

Are you ready to Get Rolfed?

I’m busy writing my first book for my new publisher (Flame Tree Press) and will spend the rest of my time this year between my new Leisure Time with Glenn Rolfe column over at Cedar Hollow Horror Reviews (covering Leisure Books Horror novels), helping launch CELESTIAL SEEPAGE by Brian Fatah Steele (Alien Agenda Publishing), continuing work on SURVIVE WITH ME (the AAP charity anthology), and finishing up the follow-ups to BOOM TOWN  and BLOOD AND RAIN.

The Flame Tree book will be out next year, and the BOOM TOWN  follow-up would be released at the end of this year, at the earliest. In the meantime, you can get some fresh work from me for super cheap on a monthly basis….How? Let me tell you.  In March, I launched my Patreon page and the Get Rolfed Short Story Series.  Every month, Patrons receive a new eBook of that month’s short story.

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March

 

 

 

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April

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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May

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SOMETHING IN THE GROOVE

 

June

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In addition to the exclusive eBooks, Patrons get behind the scenes looks at my works in progress, early cover reveals, and essays on writing/publishing.  That’s a lot of bang for a couple bucks—just  $2 a month.

$5 Patrons get all that, plus eBook and signed paperback copies of all my future releases (US and CA residents only).

www.patreon.com/getrolfed

 

There should be a new Limited Edition Hardcover copy of my last book, THE WINDOW, coming in July.   Stay tuned for that official announcement.

Thank you guys for your patience, your constant support, and your time.  Hopefully, all this 2019 work will lead to a great 2020!

Cheers!

-GR

 

A Closer Look into the World of Jackson R. Thomas

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Last summer, I kicked off the next phase of my publishing company, ALIEN AGENDA PUBLISHING.  We decided to go with a summer package featuring re-releases of novels by Mick Ridgewell (The Nightcrawler) and David Bernstein (Skinner), and introduced Jackson R. Thomas.  The “Summer of Horror” kicked off with The Beast of Brenton Woods, a fast and ferocious short novel about a legend known in the town of Coopers Mills as “The White Wolf”.

That book was a big hit for AAP, and we sold the audio rights to the fine folks at Tantor Media (with a fine vocal performance from Joe Hempel).  That audio edition is available now (To order, click HERE)

To get to know Mr. Thomas a bit better, check out the rare interview he did with House of 1000 Books

11 Questions with Jackson R. Thomas Author of Paradise, Maine

 

And that brings us to the latest offering: Paradise, Maine

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“A short, entertaining read for fans of Edward Lee and Jack Ketchum’s Dead River series.” – Jack Bantry, Splatterpunk Zine and author of The Lucky Ones Died First

“Thomas brings the goods and packs them into bite size zip-lock freezer bags, making sure to keep the horror fresh on every page! A must read.” – Kendall Reviews 

 

This one just came out last month. If you’re into splatterpunk, check it out.

Word on the street is you have two new Thomas books to keep and eye out for coming…/

RISE (the sequel to The Beast of Brenton Woods-coming late 2019 from Alien Agenda Publishing)

and IT CAME FROM THE LAKE    (TBA, 2020)

 

 

Bio:

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Jackson R. Thomas has lived in Colorado, New York, and now resides in Coopers Mills, Maine with his cat, Gizmo.

He loathes social media, and has worked as a janitor, fast-food slave, record store clerk, and night auditor at an unnamed hotel on Route 1.

He loves horror books, horror films, and the band, Ministry.

 

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Some legends never die….

The White Wolf, the Beast of Brenton Woods, a legendary creature said to walk like a man. When the full moon rises, it will feast.

Unseen for years, truth has turned to rumor, mere folklore. Until something lures the monster from exile, calling it home.
For Tyler and Ben, a firsthand encounter leads to an exploration of the forbidden depths of Brenton woods, and for Ben, the discovery of a family secret.

When Wendy and her friends hangout in the abandoned cabin is compromised, the hunt begins. The target of a creature’s desire, Wendy is hearing whispers in the night, finding footprints outside her window, and can’t shake the dreadful feeling that something is waiting for her.

Deputy Kathy Wilcox understands the disturbances, the shredded carcasses, and the growing list of missing persons in town are connected to something larger than life. Will her acceptance of the legend end in tragedy?

There’s a full moon above, the night is coming down, and blood is about to run.

 

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They needed a place to get away from it all… they’ll never be coming back.

When Darren and Vanis set out to free themselves from life’s anxieties and rekindle their relationship, a trip to the beautiful Maine coast sounds perfect.

The breathtaking views and gorgeous cabin seem like another world. One to get lost in and from which they never want to return. But something has an eye on them…

For Zebulun Ayers, a trip to connect with nature is far more than he ever saw on Man vs. Wild or any other reality TV show. This is the real wild life.

Paradise, Maine is home to a monster rarely seen and one never mentioned, even among locals. The Watcher is waiting.

(REVIEW) WILL HAUNT YOU by Brian Kirk

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Rumors of a deadly book have been floating around the dark corners of the deep web. A disturbing tale about a mysterious figure who preys on those who read the book and subjects them to a world of personalized terror. Jesse Wheeler–former guitarist of the heavy metal group The Rising Dead–was quick to discount the ominous folklore associated with the book. It takes more than some urban legend to frighten him. Hell, reality is scary enough. Seven years ago his greatest responsibility was the nightly guitar solo. Then one night when Jesse was blackout drunk, he accidentally injured his son, leaving him permanently disabled. Dreams of being a rock star died when he destroyed his son’s future. Now he cuts radio jingles and fights to stay clean. But Jesse is wrong.

The legend is real–and tonight he will become the protagonist in an elaborate scheme specifically tailored to prey on his fears and resurrect the ghosts from his past. Jesse is not the only one in danger, however.

By reading the book, you have volunteered to participate in the author’s deadly game, with every page drawing you closer to your own personalized nightmare.

The real horror doesn’t begin until you reach the end. That’s when the evil comes for you.

 

 

 

 

 

Will Haunt YouWill Haunt You by Brian Kirk

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Brian Kirk is a man that writes like no other. His horror is psychological, complex, and freaky.
One man’s dark secret will come to light, and his life and that of his family will be on the line.
WILL HAUNT YOU is original and mind-bending. Not your typical horror novel, this one will turn your brain upside down and spin you right round, baby.!

4.5 stars!
Recommended.

 

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Brian Kirk is a Bram Stoker Award®-nominated author of dark thrillers and psychological suspense. His debut novel, WE ARE MONSTERS, was released in July 2015. In addition to being nominated for a Bram Stoker Award® for Superior Achievement in a First Novel, WE ARE MONSTERS was optioned for film development by Executive Producer, Jason Shuman.

His short fiction has been published in many notable magazines and anthologies, most recently Gutted: Beautiful Horror Stories alongside multiple New York Times bestselling authors.
Find out more about Brian Kirk at his website: BRIAN KIRK: A JOURNEY OF THE IMAGINATION

View all my reviews

My Experiences in Self-Publishing and the Indie Press Scene

I read a really cool article from Sci-Fi & Scary. It was about small presses and self-publishing here in our indie writing world.
Here’s the link if you missed it: Let’s Talk About It: Small Press Publishing
Having worked in both arenas, I just wanted to share some of my own experiences.
In 2013, I broke into the publishing world with a serial novel I, for lack of knowing any better, self-published in e-Book on Amazon. I did all the editing and formatting, and had a good friend doing the art. Launching off on my own, it could have been a complete disaster. It could have ruined my writing career before it even got started. Luckily, my stories and characters, combined with Jason Lynch’s fantastic cover art, garnered me enough positive attention to make a safe landing.

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One of the scariest things I did while creating this serial was reaching out to review sites and asking them to check out my work. Part of that fear was the everyday creatives insecurity. The other part was knowing that I needed an editor. I was lucky not to be slaughtered by sites like Matt Malgaard’s HORROR NOVEL REVIEWS, and to Joe Hempel’s TOP OF THE HEAP REVIEWS.
It was also in this initial toe-stepping into the self-publishing world/ review site reach-out that I met Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi. OH, FOR THE HOOK OF A BOOK reviewed my serial and gave me one of my first interviews. Our shared love of Ronald Malfi really bolstered our instant friendship. Erin’s been editing or helping with book publicity ever since.
Having Matt (R.I.P.), Joe, and Erin in my corner early on was invaluable. This trio saw something in my work that gave me the confidence I needed to keep going and to work harder.
After my 2013 self-publishing experience, I learned that I needed to push harder to get published traditionally. I set my sights on cool indie publishers like Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing and Nightscape Press with an ultimate goal of landing a book with Don D’Auria and Samhain Publishing.

At the time, PMMP was doing these monthly novelette/Novella releases in a series called, One Night Stands. They were down to their last spot of the year, and I had just finished writing a ghost story/small town mystery novella called, ABRAM’S BRIDGE. I sent it to PMMP and got word it was strongly being considered along with seven other stories for the last spot in the One Night Stands series. It did not get the final spot, but I couldn’t have felt any better. Knowing that I had written something good. Really good. That it had made it past the slush pile and into the ring with the big boys, I was elated. I sent the editor a response to the rejection letter that probably surprised him as much as anything. It was 100% positive and probably the most enthusiastic thank you on a rejection they ever received.
Armed with a story I now had validation was good, I decided to take my chances sending it to Don D’Auria and Samhain Publishing.
That was in December of 2013. In April of 2014, Don sent me an email letting me know that he loved ABRAM’S BRIDGE and that he’d love to send me contract if I was interested.
I ended up signing three novellas and two novels with Don. I got to sit at the Samhain table at the Bram Stoker Awards with a bunch of real writers and got to sell books at the Samhain table at two Horrorhound conventions. By 2016, I had achieved all my writing goals.

In 2016, Samhain announced that they were going under. Samhain’s demise was followed by a number of other small presses closing shop, most notably, Dark Fuse.
I managed to land a fourth novella (CHASING GHOSTS) with Sinister Grin Press, but by mid-2016, I decided I was going to try my hand at self-publishing again.
In my experiences, I’ve learned a few things. If you are going to self-publish, you must have a good editor. One that will tell you if something doesn’t work, or that you can do better. You must have professional looking cover art. And you have to actively seek reviews and readers. You are in charge of getting your book out there. It is a ton of work. And it will try to break you. But in my experience, the rewards can be well worth it.
For example, the year I’ve made the most money from writing? Had to be with Samhain, right? No. It was actually this year. A year when I’ve almost exclusively self-published. To be fair, the success I’ve had this year would not have been possible were it not for the small platform I made as an author on the Samhain roster.
As Joe Mynhardt, head of Crystal Lake Publishing, suggests in the Sci-Fi & Scary article, it is wise for authors to dabble in both traditional indie publishing and self-publishing simultaneously. Plus, working with and having a book contracted by a respected editor or company like a Crystal Lake Publishing legitimizes you and gives you a little extra street cred in the self-pub world. It let’s readers and reviewers know that you’ve been vetted.
As a writer, it is way easier to have a publisher in charge of editing, cover design, and helping to put together a publicity tour. They’ll also submit your book to reviewers and the Bram Stoker Awards jury. That’s a load off a writer’s shoulders. As Joe said, the publisher needs to earn that royalty cut.
I have continued to work with indie’s like CROSSROAD PRESS (they have ABRAM’S BRIDGE and THINGS WE FEAR-which Joe Hempel did a fantastic job on the audio book performance) and SINISTER GRIN PRESS.

Personally, I enjoy the madness that comes with being in charge of all that goes into creating, releasing, and promoting a book. I have a great team to work with Erin and Jason being my top picks for editing and covers.
That said, I am looking forward to a break soon. As with all goals in life, once you’ve achieved all the ones on your list, you create a new list.
In 2019, while still releasing my own work, I will begin my pursuit of this new batch of goals.
I hope you guys enjoyed this unofficial companion piece, and hope you’ll consider checking out one of my works.
Cheers!

LAND OF BONES

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“A rising star in the genre!” – Ronald Malfi, author of BONE WHITE
“A vital part of this generation.” – Brian Keene, author THE RISING

Demon lights, granted wishes, strange things, and brutal love at the Lucky Lounge Motel. A haunted sister, desperate parents, a little human touch, and the end of the world…

These are the stories whispered among dead leaves, the script etched bare for all to see. When the chills sink deep and your heart begins to pound…are you alone?

Welcome to Glenn Rolfe’s LAND OF BONES
14 tales of the strange and macabre

 

THE WINDOW

What kind of demons await you tonight?

For Richie, life’s constant cheap shots are adding up. When he finds something is watching him, he never dreamed that it would show him everything he ever wanted.

When his son, James, comes to stay for the last month of summer, the changes in his father’s behavior come to the forefront. What is his father doing staring into the window in the middle of the night?
Was the fiery spark in the dark real? Or is Jame’s imagination getting the best of him?

Summer’s almost over.
And life is about to change.
Will James be able to save his father? Or is it already too late?

The Window holds the answers…and the key.

The Alien Agenda Project

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2018 marked the expansion of my own publishing company, ALIEN AGENDA PUBLISHING.  I’ve used the name to self-publish pieces from time to time between traditionally published works, but this year I reached out to some fellow writers to see if they’d be interested in having some of their works under my umbrella.

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It is definitely a hard thing to do. Gathering covers, reviews, making sure the product looks good, and making sure everyone involved is happy. It’s time consuming,but it is a true labor of love.  I haven’t figured out how much I’ll have time for in 2019, but it looks good that we will get the sequel to THE BEAST OF BRENTON WOODS from Jackson R. Thomas  (RISE), plus my sequel to my own werewolf novel, BLOOD AND RAIN.

The biggest project will be SURVIVE WITH ME, our first official anthology. Aiming for July on that one. It should include a number of great stories from my old Samhain Publishing cohorts, with each tale built around the survival theme. This one will be for charity.  Stay tuned for much more in the months to come.

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Other than that, I have a couple projects that I’m looking at for possible release. I just want to make sure I can put the right amount of effort into each of them. Writing and promoting my own works certainly made things a little more difficult, but it was a learning experience and one I hope will lead to more success going forward.

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Thank you so very much to my team: Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi, Jason Lynch, Michael Bray, and Lori Michelle for their contributions behind the scenes.

Also, thanks to David Bernstein, Mick Ridgewell, and Jackson R. Thomas for trusting me with their stories.

Extra special thanks to Michelle Garza, Melissa Lason, and Somer Canon for contributing to our freebie 2018 sampler (which you can get for free from Barnes and Noble  or Smashwords).

Check out all the releases from 2018 below.  Click on the covers to purchase.

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THE BEAST OF BRENTON WOODS by Jackson R. Thomas (June 2018) 37722398_10155587289225986_5092526805718401024_n

THE NIGHTCRAWLER by Mick Ridgewell (July 2018)

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SKINNER by David Bernstein (August 2018)

 

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LAND OF BONES by Glenn Rolfe  (February 2018)

THE WINDOW by Glenn Rolfe (September 2018)

(Review) THE RUST MAIDENS by Gwendolyn Kiste

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Something’s happening to the girls on Denton Street.

It’s the summer of 1980 in Cleveland, Ohio, and Phoebe Shaw and her best friend Jacqueline have just graduated high school, only to confront an ugly, uncertain future. Across the city, abandoned factories populate the skyline; meanwhile at the shore, one strong spark, and the Cuyahoga River might catch fire. But none of that compares to what’s happening in their own west side neighborhood. The girls Phoebe and Jacqueline have grown up with are changing. It starts with footprints of dark water on the sidewalk. Then, one by one, the girls’ bodies wither away, their fingernails turning to broken glass, and their bones exposed like corroded metal beneath their flesh.

As rumors spread about the grotesque transformations, soon everyone from nosy tourists to clinic doctors and government men start arriving on Denton Street, eager to catch sight of “the Rust Maidens” in metamorphosis. But even with all the onlookers, nobody can explain what’s happening or why–except perhaps the Rust Maidens themselves. Whispering in secret, they know more than they’re telling, and Phoebe realizes her former friends are quietly preparing for something that will tear their neighborhood apart.

Alternating between past and present, Phoebe struggles to unravel the mystery of the Rust Maidens–and her own unwitting role in the transformations–before she loses everything she’s held dear: her home, her best friend, and even perhaps her own body.

 

MY REVIEW:

The Rust MaidensThe Rust Maidens by Gwendolyn Kiste

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Gwendolyn Kiste isn’t new to the horror scene, but she is new to me. I’d been hearing about this book that was coming out soon, about this writer and how this was her first novel. Kiste has collections and a novella out there (which I will be hunting down), but this –THE RUST MAIDENS-is her first full-length novel. I managed to get a hold of a pre-release copy, and I must say, I was not disappointed.

Kiste’s novel is not just a good story (It’s a great story), it’s a statement to the literary world: Kiste is here and now, one of the best young writers in the fiction world. I couldn’t understand for the life of me how THE RUST MAIDENS isn’t with one of the big publishers. This book is fantastic.

The story centers around a young woman named, Phoebe, and five of the girls from her graduating class. When the girls, including Phoebe’s cousin and best friend, Jacqueline, begin to change amidst the strike at the mill, and the mothers of the block’s disparate clutch on perceptions, the street, the town, and those families involved are turned upside down. What exactly is happening to these girls? Why would they do this now of all times? When will it all return to normal?

“The flame of the mill burned bright overhead, but its warmth might as well have been a thousand miles away.”
Phoebe finds herself in a battle against loneliness, and an uncertain future. She should be riding out of town with her best friend ,ready for college and a life outside of Cleveland, but instead, she winds up on a quest for answers she may never receive in a place that just wishes she would leave things be.
“I’m a woman with half a century of life experience, who still can’t do a convincing impression of a human being.”

It does feature Phoebe now, decades later returning to the town and problems she eventually runs away from. But most of the story is of that summer of 1980.

Kiste does a wonderful job ingraining us through Phoebe to this place in time, this dying city in 1980. You feel the desperation. The need to get out. To get out before the dead end town claims you next. You feel the squeeze of lean and mean times as her father’s job at the mill is in jeopardy. You feel the fear of being stuck in a place, doomed to give away the world you received in a never ending cycle, and how even though you know this, there’s still no way to change it. The same way Phoebe knows, the girls have a fate that she cannot stand in the way of no matter how hard she tries.
Still, she tries. She refuses to accept that all hope is gone. And Kiste transfers that hope to the reader.

I took my time reading this book because I wanted to stay there and hang with these characters, to take Phoebe’s hand and stand with her against her world. And that’s the best compliment I can offer to the author. I loved this book.

Another thing I loved was the soundtrack. Kiste’s use of a few select artists does wonders in pulling the reader deeper into the experience. You get Tom Petty’s jangly guitars lifting you up and giving you just enough hope that things will be all right. You get The Carpenter’s fraudulent, soothing lullabies that everything is normal, and then you get the all too real, working class it is what it is-our lot in life- of Bob Seger. On the east Coast, we tend to tune into Springsteen for this, but Kiste being from Ohio, uses the Mid-West equivalent and it fits perfectly. Confession time: I went to bed a number of nights after reading a few chapters listening to Bob Seger’s Stranger in Town record.

Not an outright horror novel, but THE RUST MAIDENS is a book I will not soon forget.

I give THE RUST MAIDENS 5 stars! Easily the best first novel I’ve read in a long time.

 

THE RUST MAIDENS will be released Friday November 16th. You should definitely grab a copy.

pre-order yours here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07GVSDYDD/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i0

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Gwendolyn Kiste is a speculative fiction writer based in Pennsylvania. Her work has appeared in Nightmare, Shimmer, Interzone, Daily Science Fiction, and LampLight among others. Her debut collection, AND HER SMILE WILL UNTETHER THE UNIVERSE, was released through JournalStone in April 2017. She currently resides on an abandoned horse farm with her husband, two cats, and not nearly enough ghosts.

 

 

Check out Gwendolyn’s website: www.GwendolynKiste.com

And find her on Twitter: @GwendolynKiste

OCTOBER HOUSE: Some of my Favorite Halloween Reads

 

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There’s nothing us horror writers enjoy more than sharing the horror. We write because we fell in love with reading. We fell in love with stories that moved us, frightened us, aroused us, and made us say, “What the fuck?” Horror has it all. Good horror especially. Heart and soul, ghouls that take hearts and souls, love stories, lust stories, blood and rain (he, he, he) and all the guts, perseverance, and monsters and heroes you could ever want, or want to see bested.

Here’s a few of my favorite October reads ever, and a few other suggested titles, too.

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Ben Mears has returned to Jerusalem’s Lot in hopes that exploring the history of the Marsten House, an old mansion long the subject of rumor and speculation, will help him cast out his personal devils and provide inspiration for his new book. But when two young boys venture into the woods, and only one returns alive, Mears begins to realize that something sinister is at work—in fact, his hometown is under siege from forces of darkness far beyond his imagination. And only he, with a small group of allies, can hope to contain the evil that is growing within the borders of this small New England town.

With this, his second novel, Stephen King established himself as an indisputable master of American horror, able to transform the old conceits of the genre into something fresh and all the more frightening for taking place in a familiar, idyllic locale.

It all has to start somewhere…. My favorite book of all-time, STEPHEN KING’s ‘SALEM’s LOT.  I’ve read this four times (all in October).  You can do no better than this one.

Purchase here: ‘SALEM’S LOT

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The town of Stillwater has a very unwelcome resident. 

The town of Stillwater has been dying – the long and painful death of a town ravaged by floods and haunted by the ghosts of all who had lived there. Yet this most recent flood has brought something with it – a creature that nests among the good folks of Stillwater…and feeds off them. The children who haven’t disappeared whisper the same word – “vampire”. But they’re wrong. What has come to Stillwater is something much more horrific. 

Easily one of my other all-time favorites, Ronald Malfi delivers the perfect October concoction with his novel, THE NARROWS. If you’ve enjoyed his recent hits (BONE WHITE, LITTLE GIRLS, THE NIGHT PARADE), try this one for your next October read.

Purchase here: THE NARROWS

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“Hell House is the scariest haunted house novel ever written. It looms over the rest the way the mountains loom over the foothills.” — Stephen King

Rolf Rudolph Deutsch is going die. But when Deutsch, a wealthy magazine and newpaper publisher, starts thinking seriously about his impending death, he offers to pay a physicist and two mediums, one physical and one mental, $100,000 each to establish the facts of life after death.

Dr. Lionel Barrett, the physicist, accompanied by the mediums, travel to the Belasco House in Maine, which has been abandoned and sealed since 1949 after a decade of drug addiction, alcoholism, and debauchery. For one night, Barrett and his colleagues investigate the Belasco House and learn exactly why the townsfolk refer to it as the Hell House.

Okay, definitely one of the scariest books I’ve ever read. HELL HOUSE reads like a highbrow literature version of a Bentley Little book. Twisted, scary, and wonderfully written, Richard Matheson reset the true standard for haunted house tales.

Purchase here: HELL HOUSE

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The classic supernatural thriller by an author who helped define the genre

First published in 1959, Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House has been hailed as a perfect work of unnerving terror. It is the story of four seekers who arrive at a notoriously unfriendly pile called Hill House: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of a “haunting”; Theodora, his lighthearted assistant; Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists; and Luke, the future heir of Hill House. At first, their stay seems destined to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena. But Hill House is gathering its powers—and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

My wife is currently reading this one for the first time. Jackson set the original standard for haunted house novels with this beauty. THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE has a creeping death type of vibe. By which I mean, it crawls under your skin and slowly pulls you down. Jackson succeeds without the gore and gruesome revelations of say, HELL HOUSE or THE SHINING, but hits with just as much impact.

Purchase here: THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE

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There are all kinds of legends about the forests of Central Pennsylvania, and in this sequel to DARK HOLLOW, the truth about those legends is finally revealed.

Halloween is coming, and a new haunted attraction is open for business in LeHorn’s Hollow. Folks will come from miles around to walk down the spooky trail and get scared witless. But there’s one thing the owners of the ghost walk haven’t counted on. There really is something waiting in the woods-a vast, ancient evil whose hunger threatens to consume all life on Earth. Soon, the unsuspecting customers will pay their money and get in line… to die. And only one man, occult detective Levi Stoltzfus, can save them and stop the evil before it is unleashed.

What’s better than a book set around a Halloween attraction?  Brina Keene’s GHOST WALK is a fun October ride with one of his best characters, Levi Stoltzfus.

Side rant here…. I am probably in the minority, but I prefer his Leisure book covers over the newer Deadite ones.  To me, the LB covers look more professional. The newer ones would actually deter me from picking up the books. A little too nasty for my taste. BUT each and every one of Keene’s novels are worthy of your time. Pick one up today!

Purchase here: GHOST WALK

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During the great depression, a small backwoods community in Iowa face even more difficult times than most, having to endure the slowly fading sanity of their leader, Reverend Joshua Miller. When it’s clear the man has slipped beyond the edge of reason and perhaps signed a deal with the devil, the citizens unite to stop him any way they can, breaking into the church to lash the reverend to his wooden alter cross then boarding up the windows and doors to leave him to fate and God’s judgment. The people of Oak Valley then abandoned their town to the cornfields and woods; ending the madness for what they hoped was forever.

They were wrong!

Seventy-four years later, the corn and trees have taken back the area and not much is left of the once thriving little community but Joshua Miller’s desecrated church still stands, and within its boarded up and sun-baked walls something that used to be a holy man waits for whoever is unfortunate enough to release him from his cross…

THE SCARECROW WILL WALK AT MIDNIGHT

One of my favorite books by Gord Rollo. This one is guaranteed to scratch your Halloween horror itch. Also, if you’re a fan of King’s IT, check out Rollo’s other offering, CRIMSON.

Purchase here: VALLEY OF THE SCARECROW 

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THE PAST NOT ONLY HAUNTS. IT HUNTS.

In a small, rural Arkansas town in the midst of World War II, hotel house detective George “Jojo” Walker wearily maintains the status quo in the wake of personal devastation. That status quo is disrupted when a hygiene picture roadshow rolls into town with a controversial program on display and curious motives in mind. What begins with a gruesome and impossible murder soon spirals into hallucinatory waking nightmares for Jojo—nightmares that converge with his reality and dredge up his painful, secret past. Black magic and a terrifying Luciferian carnival boil up to a surreal finale for the town of Litchfield, when truth itself unfurls and Jojo Walker is forced to face his own identity in ways he could never have expected.

Ed Kurtz delivered in last year’s THE RIB FROM WHICH I REMAKE THE WORLD. Fans of the classic Leisure Books Horror stories will mLOVE this one. If that’s you, make this your next buy.

Purchase here: THE RIB FROM WHICH I REMAKE THE WORLD 

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Another recent scare, DREAM WOODS, from author, Patrick Lacey, offers some great characters set in a Little-esque world. AND it’s just 99 cents!

Terror abounds!  A theme park setting is the perfect horror ride.

Purchase here: DREAM WOODS

 

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And  if you’ve read all these already, check out Sinister Grin Press for more. ALL of their eBook titles are on sale for $2.99 or less!

Check them out here: SINISTER GRIN PRESS 

 

Lastly, check out any of books here: GLENN ROLFE

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Happy reading!!!!\

 

(Review) CAVERN OF THE DAMNED by Russell James

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Broke and desperate, paleontologist Grant Coleman gets the chance of a lifetime exploring a long-sealed cave, the fabled home of a gigantic creatures.

NPS Ranger McKinley Stinson discovers a rancher’s prize bull has been butchered by an airborne killer, and tracks the blood trail back to the re-opened cavern. But as she’s about to arrest the trespassers, the unstable roof collapses, trapping all.

Their only way out is at the cave system’s far end. But an eco-system of terrifying mega fauna stands between them and freedom. Death, double-crosses, and a slew of monstrous cave creatures take their toll as the group battles to what they pray is an exit.

Will anyone survive this cavern of the damned?

MY REVIEW:

Cavern Of The DamnedCavern Of The Damned by Russell James

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

James at the top of his game!

From start to finish, Cavern of the Damned is a thrilling, well-written, kick ass piece of dark fiction.
James crafts real characters to life and places them next to impossible pre-historic creatures. Part The Descent, part reality TV, Cavern of the Damned delivers big.

One of the most fun stories I’ve read this year and a top 5 contender for best horror novel of 2017.
Highly recommended!

I give CAVERN OF THE DAMNED 5 stars!

View all my reviews

(REVIEW) WE CAME BACK by Patrick Lacey

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Growing up dead.

Melvin Brown sees things that aren’t there. Monsters with tentacles and razor-sharp teeth. Ever the social outcast, he is bullied to the point of suicide. And his hatred of those who did him wrong does not die with him.

One decade after Melvin’s death, something strange is happening to Lynnwood High School’s smartest and most popular students. They begin to act out and spend time at the former high school, now abandoned and said to be haunted. And their numbers grow at an alarming rate.

Is this just a passing fad or are the rumors true? Does Lynnwood really have a teenage cult on their hands?

(REVIEW)

We Came BackWe Came Back by Patrick Lacey

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

WE CAME BACK is the second novel from Patrick Lacey. After reading his novella, A DEBT TO BE PAID, his collection, SLEEP PARALYSIS, and his debut, DREAM WOODS, I thought I had this guy figured out. I assumed he was gonna slip into a comfortable little spot a lot of horror writers find themselves in and stay there. And he could, but Lacey doesn’t seem to care for complacency. He’s eager, he’s productive, and guess what? He’s pretty damn good. His previous works showed promise. WE CAME BACK delivers on that promise, and I’d be willing to bet that it’s just a hint of things to come.

WE CAME BACK isn’t just a great horror novel, it’s a horror novel with depth. Multiple characters deal with loss throughout, and find themselves figuring out how to move forward. The problem is that, in Lynwood, there may be no future. A past incident at the old Lynwood High School sets into motion the eventual troubles that spring up in town in the present. The Lynwood Vampires, a new and ever-growing clique of honor roll students gone all Marylin Manson, are upsetting expectations and smearing their darkness across this quiet little town. Are they just a pack of good kids going through a rebellious phase, or is there more behind the black outfits and sudden change in moods?

Lacey does a wonderful job drawing these characters–their hurts, their losses, their frustrations, and their faults—on his way to delivering a fantastic piece of horror fiction. The emotional undercurrent is what pulls this dark story along. Lacey crafts and executes some wonderfully frightening scenes throughout and does not disappoint in the blood and carnage department, a playground he’s proved himself as adept at running as a chambered bullet exploding your brains against the wall.

Incorporating pain and heartache with touches of humor, and pound-after-pound of fear and creepiness, Lacey proves that scars are not the exclusive property of weathered vets. Ladies and gentlemen, if you’re not paying attention to Patrick Lacey yet, now is the time, and WE CAME BACK is the book. This author is something special. Introduce yourself to his work now, you won’t regret it.

I give WE CAME BACK 4.5 stars!

View all my reviews

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Follow along the tour with these hashtags:
#WeCameBack #monstersandcults #AmericanCancerSociety

**Patrick Lacey will be donating all his proceeds from this book to the American Cancer Society in memory of his dad, who lost his battle with cancer.**

We Came Back, Synopsis

  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Sinister Press
  • Publication Date: April 15, 2017

Patrick Lacey, Biography

Patrick Lacey was born and raised in a haunted house. He spends his nights and weekends writing about things that make the general public uncomfortable. He lives in Massachusetts with his Pomeranian, his mustached cat, and his muse, who is likely trying to kill him. Find him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter (@patlacey), or visit his website.

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Praise for Patrick Lacey

“WE CAME BACK is an emotional trip through our darkest fears. One of the best books I’ve read in years.”–Kristopher Rufty, author of SOMETHING VIOLENT, DESOLATION, and JAGGER.

“The man’s imagination is incredible. A must read!!!!” – David Bernstein, author of A Mixed Bag of Blood

“It’s a rare and joyful thing for me to read a book and realize I’m in the hands of an author who can go absolutely anywhere, who works without a formula and without a net. Such is the case with this stellar debut collection.” – Russell Coy, author of The One Who Lies Next to You

Patrick Lacey’s Dream Woods works a razor’s edge into an after school special.”
– Unnerving Magazine

Purchase Links

Amazon

Also find at other online retailers like B&N, Kobo, Smashwords, etc. Also ask your local indie bookstore to order or ask for your local library to order it!

Want to Feature?

If you’d like to feature Patrick Lacey on your blog or site, or review We Came Back, please give Erin Al-Mehairi, marketing and publicity at Sinister Grin Press, a shout out at hookofabook@hotmail.com.

(Review) Splinterlands by John Feffer and Exorcist Falls by Jonathan Janz

I’ve been a bit behind on my reading in the last six weeks or so, but… I did manage to fit in these two fantastic novels. SPLINTERLANDS by John Feffer and EXORCIST FALLS by Jonathan Janz

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Up first, we have one of my surprise finds from the library. John Feffer-SPLINTERLANDS

SplinterlandsSplinterlands by John Feffer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“The wolf is at the door. I don’t know why you can’t hear it. But I hear it. And I know how hungry it is.”

Am I glad that I’ve started using the library? Heck yes. Browsing the “New Arrivals” shelf introduces me to works I might otherwise never come across. Such as John Feffers’ SPLINTERLANDS.
Is it horror? Not genre-wise, but it is scary as Hell.

“Water boils fiercely just before it disappears. And so it is, evidently with human affairs.”

Its a short dystopian novel that is eerily tied in with far too many things actually happening right before our eyes in 2017. Hurricane Donald (very apropos), the result of our ignoring climate-change, wipes out Washington DC. The world is in flux under the ever-growing number of countries splintering into separate, self-governed states (see Brexit, or the increasingly popular idea of Cal-Exit), geo-paleontologist and author of “Splinterlands”, Dr. West, sets out to write his follow-up report, and also, to reconnect with his splintered family.
The journey is fantastic. I couldn’t put the book down.

This short novel is freaky with how close we are to following in its “fictitious” future’s footsteps.
I won’t give away any spoilers, but I would suggest anyone out there who loves good fiction, horror or otherwise, to track SPLINTERLANDS down. Hell, I honestly wouldn’t mind seeing this book become “mandatory reading” for high school kids and adults alike.

“Empires, like children, think they’ll live forever.”

I fear the future, especially these past few months of “Hurricane” Donald Drumpf with a too-large number of our country’s citizens eyeing immigrants as enemies. SPLINTERLANDS is scary, and it should be. Anything with an honest message of what-could-be, should be taken seriously and carefully considered. We the people should take a lot more things in our country seriously before they land us in this future.

“I don’t doubt that we still have convictions. We just don’t seem to have the requisite courage to follow them.”

I give SPLINTERLANDS 5 stars!

View all my reviews

And I got the chance to read one of my most-anticipated releases for 2017, Jonathan Janz- EXORCIST FALLS

Exorcist FallsExorcist Falls by Jonathan Janz

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was my most anticipated release of 2017, so my expectations were extremely high. EXORCIST FALLS did not fail to entertain.

This book starts with the original novella, EXORCIST ROAD, one of my favorite pieces by Janz. It was great to re-read it here and love it just as much.

That brings us to the follow-up, the short novel, EXORCIST FALLS.
This story was pretty great, overall.
I loved not knowing what was going to happen. Every time I thought (or hoped) I knew where Janz was going, he took my someplace else. He really did an amazing job of keeping you off guard throughout.

Father Crowder is definitely the star of the show, and you’ll be praying for Danny Hartman to get his. There’s a lot of great gore and wildly imaginative action going on that is also well balanced with the internal struggle between Crowder and his curse. Janz’s writing is on point.

There were a few characters that fell flat (Liz) or seemed to be a little inconsistent from start to finish (Father Patterson, for instance). That said, neither character ruined the experience for me.

The ending….I won’t give it away, but it was both REALLY awesome and somewhat disappointing. Sound confusing? Yeah, it’s a frustrating thing. I LOVE where Janz goes here, but I think he should have written about three more chapters and brought the story to an even more amazing conclusion. Oh well. Not everything works the way we, the reader, want it to.

I still give EXORCIST FALLS 4 stars! Entertaining as hell.
I look forward to seeing it on many, many year end lists.

View all my reviews

I should have some new reviews for Hunter Shea, Patrick Lacey, William Meikle, and Jason Arnopp coming up…..

STAY TUNED!