Survive With Me: 5 Questions with the great Ronald Malfi

SURVIVE WITH ME features 16 of my favorite writer buds. Each of them gave these stories to me for this charity anthology. ALL proceeds go to the American Indian College Fund. You can order your eBook or paperback copy HERE Or discover more about this wonderful cause here: AMERICAN INDIAN COLLEGE FUND

Tonight, we welcome one of my very favorite authors in the horror business. Three of his novels are contenders in my all-time Top 10 list (Bone White, Floating Staircase, The Narrows) and the rest are just as stellar. When he’s not writing, you can also find him rocking out with his band, VEER. He’s also one of the nicest, coolest dudes to have a beer with. Bone White is in the works at Amazon, so he’ll be adding movies/tv to his already impressive resume. Let’s catch up with Mr. Ronald Malfi.

Ronald Malfi

What inspired your story in SWM, “Discussions Concerning the Ingestion of Living Insects” and its crazy title?

I wrote “Discussions Concerning the Ingestion of Living Insects” for a Raw Dog Screaming anthology called Sick: An Anthology of Illness, back in 2003 or so. In hindsight, it was sort of shoehorned into that anthology because it has nothing to do with illness and everything to do with survival, which makes it a nice fit for Survive With Me, of course. The main protag is laid up in bed, in an abandoned hospital during some nameless war, reliving the terrible deed that wound him up in that place. Unlike his dead compatriots, he refuses to surrender to death, so he continues to survive in a very unorthodox and stomach-churning way. I mean, the title of the story kinda says it all, right?

What other causes would you like see get some more attention?

We live in a time of causes, and that’s good, although some remain overlooked while others have become part of the fabric of our culture. I’ll twist your question to suit my response here, which is that I commend you for choosing to benefit Native American education, because I feel that is a cause wholly overlooked. 

You do winter horror/thrillers so well (Snow, The Ascent, Bone White), what is about that setting that gets your juices flowing?

I mean, the winter is just so suitable for horror, no? The cold, the desiccation, the bleakness of it all. Plus, what better time to read? A good book, a glass of scotch, and a roaring fire–is there anything better?

You love to rock. What does 2021 hold for VEER?

As you can imagine, COVID crushed the band’s ability to tour and play live. Our last show was in January, which seems like a century ago now, before all this madness hit us. However, we’ve been blessed with excellent fans who continue to support us, purchasing T-shirts, CDs, and all manner of merch from our website, veerband.net, to keep us afloat during this time. Meanwhile, we’ve been recording new music for our sophomore album, and will be releasing a new single and music video very soon. We’d love for anyone to subscribe to our YouTube channel, where we’ll be releasing new material, included a behind-the-scenes web series, which will mostly be us arguing, I imagine. (YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrghUCsCW3xCBKjOvz_KbKw )

Give me three songs you’d be willing to do at karaoke that might surprise people. 

Excellent question. Maybe not complete surprises, but:

    1) “The Warrior” by Scandal

    2) “Round Here” by Counting Crows

    3) “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” by Cyndi Lauper

    4) “Mysterious Ways” by U2

    5) “A Nightmare on My Street” by DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince

VEER:

(Review) BONE WHITE by Ronald Malfi

download (3)

A landscape of frozen darkness punctuated by grim, gray days.
The feeling like a buzz in your teeth.
The scrape of bone on bone. . .

Paul Gallo saw the report on the news: a mass murderer leading police to his victims’ graves, in remote Dread’s Hand, Alaska.

It’s not even a town; more like the bad memory of a town. The same bit of wilderness where his twin brother went missing a year ago. As the bodies are exhumed, Paul travels to Alaska to get closure and put his grief to rest.

But the mystery is only beginning. What Paul finds are superstitious locals who talk of the devil stealing souls, and a line of wooden crosses to keep what’s in the woods from coming out. He finds no closure because no one can explain exactly what happened to Danny.

And the more he searches for answers, the more he finds himself becoming part of the mystery. . .

 

MY REVIEW:

 

Bone WhiteBone White by Ronald Malfi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“Like it was something real. Something out there in the woods with claws.”

Every time I sit down with a Ronald Malfi book, I’m reminded of why I want to be a writer. He reminds me of the power in the art. How words can come together to evoke visions and stir feelings, how characters can become flesh and blood on the page, and how a story can work its way into your bones. We expect that as readers, but as a writer, when we see it done so well, it ignites within us the reason we’re doing this in the first place.

“Snowflakes, like little filaments of pillow stuffing, floated about the atmosphere without ever touching the ground.”

Malfi is the master of description, often giving us subtle lines that flow so effortlessly we ride their waves between actions and dialog, thoughts and observations, trusting he’ll bring us to shore. And when our feet touch sand, the story is there, impossible to ignore, forget, or escape. In his latest effort, BONE WHITE, Malfi brings his entire bag of tricks and treats, delivering the kind of novel we (his fans) have come to expect.

“Despite the shroudlike fog that blocked out the sun, the thing’s shadow stretched like black taffy along the pavement behind it.”

The story of twin brothers, Paul and Danny Gallo, and a small, mysterious Alaskan town (Dread’s Hand), BONE WHITE unfurls at a perfect pace, digging its claws in and never letting you go. Things get off to a bang when resident, Joe Mallory, reappears at the local diner after months away, and confesses to a slew of murders. Detective Jill Ryerson arrives on the scene, doubting the seriousness of Mallory’s claims, but finds out the man speaks the truth. After the bodies are discovered, Paul Gallo flies to Alaska (via Maryland) to see if his brother, Danny, is among the victims. From there, Paul finds himself in Dread’s Hand, an unwanted stranger, asking too many questions and fumbling around in corner’s the town would prefer remained dark.

BONE WHITE might be my pick for Novel of the Year, it’s that freaking good. My favorite Malfi book since his tremendous FLOATING STAIRCASE, BONE WHITE needs to be on your To Be Read list, whether you’re a horror fan or not.

I give BONE WHITE 5 stars!

View all my reviews

 

ron-malfi

Ronald Malfi is the award-winning author of the novels Floating Staircase, Snow, The Ascent, and several others. Most recognized for his haunting, literary style and memorable characters, Malfi’s dark fiction has gained acceptance among readers of all genres. He currently lives along the Chesapeake Bay where he is at work on his next book.

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Bone White, Synopsis

  • File Size: 1616 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (July 25, 2017)
  • Publication Date: July 25, 2017
  • Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services

A landscape of frozen darkness punctuated by grim, gray days.

The feeling like a buzz in your teeth.

The scrape of bone on bone. . .

Paul Gallo saw the report on the news: a mass murderer leading police to his victims’ graves, in remote Dread’s Hand, Alaska.

It’s not even a town; more like the bad memory of a town. The same bit of wilderness where his twin brother went missing a year ago. As the bodies are exhumed, Paul travels to Alaska to get closure and put his grief to rest.

But the mystery is only beginning. What Paul finds are superstitious locals who talk of the devil stealing souls, and a line of wooden crosses to keep what’s in the woods from coming out. He finds no closure because no one can explain exactly what happened to Danny.

And the more he searches for answers, the more he finds himself becoming part of the mystery. 

Praise for Ronald Malfi

“I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The setting, the words, the ending. Color me impressed.” –Melissa Reads on The Night Parade

“The Night Parade has a creepy vibe and some genuinely terrifying moments. I even teared up a time or two. It’s everything I look for in a great read.” – Frank Errington on The Night Parade

“One cannot help but think of writers like Peter Straub and Stephen King.”
—FearNet

“Malfi is a skillful storyteller.”—New York Journal of Books

“A complex and chilling tale….terrifying.”—Robert McCammon

“Malfi’s lyrical prose creates an atmosphere of eerie claustrophobia…haunting.”—Publishers Weekly

“A thrilling, edge-of-your-seat ride that should not be missed.”
Suspense Magazine

Purchase Links

Amazon


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If you are a blogger, author, or member of the media and you would like to feature Bone White or Ronald Malfi in a review or interview, please contact Erin Al-Mehairi, publicist, athookofabook@hotmail.com. Thanks!