Accepting NO review requests

As of 28 February 2016, due to decline in my health and chronic illness

Monday, May 30, 2016


Review: Mayan Blue

Mayan BlueMayan Blue by Michelle Garza
My rating: 4 of 5 stars 

Review: MAYAN BLUE by Michelle Garza and Melissa Lason

I so appreciate the Lovecraftian resonance of this story: modern research scientist [archaeologist, professor, cancer survivor--at odds with other faculty and peers in his specialty] determines to prove what to most is a wild, far-fetched notion. So [In keeping with so many of H. P. Lovecraftian' s foolishly reckless characters] he proceeds, on his own, opens what should be avoided, and pays the consequences. His risk-taking opens a dangerous can of worms--err, owls; and releases what, millennia ago, had been sealed by multiple self-sacrifices. Of course, others will now suffer too.

Plenty of blood, gore, dismemberment, and enucleation here to satisfy those devotees of extreme horror, and an intriguing weaving of ancient Mayan mythology. Plus, for fans of 80's horror films, there are university students, some of whom are so airheaded one wants them gone just to shut them up. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Review: furtl By Strobe Witherspoon

Review: furtl

furtlfurtl by Strobe Witherspoon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars 

Review: furtl by Strobe Witherspoon

So you think privacy, personal and global, suffers too many inroads these days? Think governments [everywhere] know too much and abuse that knowledge? HA! Read furtl: a very-near future, very societally-dystopian, very "sell to the highest bidder," very mentally-ruined citizenry, narrative. Beware: dumbing-down is NOT a slow process; and the setting of furtl is NOT far ahead. Beware. 

Review: SCHISM by Brett Holewinski

Schism Schism by Britt Holewinski
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Review: SCHISM

When society collapses, for whatever reason--war, disease, invasion--humanity resorts to its basest motivations. Looting, pillage, killing, are rampant. Such is the case even when the survivors are all youngsters, as in Brett Holewinski's dystopian tale, SCHISM. When six billion of the global population fall prey to plague, the survivors are those in early adolescence or younger. Those with character and moral integrity strive to not just survive, but to persevere and rebuild. Others live only to destroy. SCHISM is the first in a trilogy.

View all my reviews

Sunday, May 22, 2016

MOTORMAN by Robert E. Dunn_Tour

Review: MOTORMAN by Robert Dunn

When I read author Robert Dunn 's RED HIGHWAY, I was blown away by its power and range. MOTORMAN also impressed me strongly, but for me it resonated more for the various individuals than for its general apocalyptic impact [as In RED HIGHWAY].

 I too live in a community whose economy is collapsing. In some regions, economic issues result in individuals joining gangs or selling drugs. There is some of that here, but the community in which fugitive Johnny finds himself has adopted a massively different solution, one that is both bizarre and pragmatic. Mr. Dunn deftly blends horror, science fiction, literary fiction, and a deep understanding of humanness in a beautifully crafted story.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

THE INVASION by Brett McBean_Tour

Review:  THE INVASION by Brett McBean

The author has exhibited so much talent and interwoven so many layers of meaning into this novel that not once did I panic due to the nature of the plot--planned multiple home invasions by a technologically spiffy "cult." Okay, a couple of scenes and references really perturbed me. But we are so thoroughly introduced to the characters before the ugly events commence, that I just breezed along, wrapped up in the family and friends, cheering them on, rather than focusing on the pain and terror. Also, none of the "victims-to-be," as the terror squad perceives them, are wimp-outs, each in her or her own way has character strength and determination, compassion and empathy--all traits missing in the cult members, who are all human-shaped voids, commanded by a Black Hole with a metaphysical bent.

Mr. McBean, bring it on. You've far surpassed expectations in this supremely rapid-paced thriller.

The Invasion, Synopsis

Print Length235 pages
Publisher: Sinister Grin Press
Publication Date: May 15, 2016

It was supposed to be a quiet end to a long day: five close-knit family and friends settling in for some much-needed sleep after coming together for an early Christmas party.

Instead, it’s the beginning of a shocking night of brutality when six intruders break into the sprawling residence of Debra Hillsboro, a middle-aged romance novelist with a fierce devotion to her loved ones and a strong kinship with her home of almost thirty years.

Armed with smartphones and a modern brand of madness, the intruders – an internet-age cult disconnected from humanity and addicted to causing fear and mayhem – have come to the secluded property for one purpose: to terrorize, and ultimately kill, everyone inside all while filming their heinous crimes.

Outnumbered and cut off from the outside world, the terrified occupants find themselves trapped in a fight for survival as a once place of safety is turned into a deadly maze of darkened rooms and forbidding hallways. On this sweltering summer night, they must somehow find a way to escape before the cult turns the beloved home into a house for the dead.


Brett McBean, Biography

Brett McBean is an award-winning horror and thriller author. His books, which include The MotherThe Last Motel and Wolf Creek: Desolation Game, have been published in Australia, the U.S., and Germany.

He’s been nominated for the Aurealis, Ditmar, and Ned Kelly awards, and he won the 2011 Australian Shadows Award for his collection, Tales of Sin and Madness.

He lives in Melbourne with his wife, daughter and German shepherd.

Find out more at:

Praise for Brett McBean

"McBean’s voice is one that should be heard – a hint of Laymon and Koontz, yet distinctly his own.” —Brian Keene, author of The Rising and Terminal

“Brett McBean is as brash and brutal as a young Jack Ketchum. He visits the dark rooms inside us all.” —Scott Nicholson, author of The Manor and The Farm

"The Invasion, by Brett McBean, is a startlingly bleak home invasion story, but one that is wonderfully written. McBean relies on his characters and atmosphere to bring the biggest scares, along with the frightening threat of home invasion that many readers will bring to the reading all by themselves." -Michael Patrick Hicks, author of Convergence

Purchase Links

Amazon (U.S)

Amazon (Australia)

Amazon (U.K.)

Friday, May 6, 2016



A Wild and uproarious tour of the gritty underside of New York City's "Alphabet Avenues," this story is an eye-opener [and often, a stomach-churner]. Guaranteed, you won't think of the city in the same way ever again. Ms. Gresch delivers a far-out Neo-Noir depiction. Much like a highway fatality, you might find it cringeworthy but you won't be able to turn away.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Tour: VICKI BEAUTIFUL by Somer Canon

What would you do for a friend? Check out Somer Canon’s debut work! Follow along the tour!

Vicki Beautiful, Synopsis

Publication Date: April 26, 2016

One last taste of perfection…

Sasha and Brynn descend upon the showplace home of their girlhood friend, Vicki, planning to celebrate her surviving cancer to reach her fortieth birthday. As they gather around Vicki’s perfectly set dinner table, though, her husband shares devastating news. The cancer is back, and she doesn’t have long to live.

Her life is cut even shorter than Sasha and Brynn expect—the next morning, their friend is found dead, her flawless skin slit at the wrists. But a tub full of blood is only the beginning. Before the weekend is through, they are forced to question how far they’re willing to go to fulfill Vicki’s last wish.

A very specific, very detailed recipe that only the truest of friends could stomach…


Somer Canon is a minivan revving suburban mother who avoids her neighbors for fear of
being found out as a weirdo.  When she’s not peering out of her windows, she’s consuming books, movies, and video games that sate her need for blood, gore, and things that disturb her mother.

Vicki Beautiful is her debut novella.

Find out more about Somer and her upcoming works at her website You can also connect with Somer onTwitter:

Praise for Vicki Beautiful

 I read this at one gripping session and I shall read more by this author. Excellent, original and worth every one of my five stars.” –Catherine Cavendish, Author of The Devil’s Serenade

“At times it reminded me of the cult classic "Eating Raoul" and others "The Big Chill". Suffice to say, Canon has created an intriguing tale that will not only have you caring about characters put into an awkward, unsettling situation but also wondering how they'll react to it every step of the way. I highly recommend this unique and entertaining story.” 
–Matthew Franks, Author The Monster Underneath

“This is not the normal type of book that I would read, but the cover sold it to me, and I like reading new authors and genres. This book is beautifully written, the writing flows and you feel you really understand what the character’s are feeling…” Rebecca, GoodReads Reviewer

“The ending of this story was truly horrific. I am an old school horror fan, and have been indulging in the genre since I was old enough to hold a book. I also adore and enjoy the sub-genre splatterpunk, I read Jack Ketchum as a bedside book all the time. It takes a lot to phase me, but even I was turning my head in repulsion at the end. What a wonderful debut story for SomerCanon.” 
BadseedgirlGoodReads Reviewer

“A simple story, but all the more powerful for its simplicity. Four stars. The author has guts and skill.” –Outlaw Poet

Purchase Links


Barnes & Noble


Want to Feature Somer Canon?

If you would like a copy of the book for review or to conduct an interview with Somer Canon, please contact Erin Al-Mehairi, Publicist, at Hook of a Book Media:HookofaBook



Review: Vicki Beautiful

Vicki BeautifulVicki Beautiful by Somer Canon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars 

Review: VICKY BEAUTIFUL by Somer Canon

How far are you willing to go to fulfill the final wishes of your best friend or your spouse? That question is the crux of this debut horror novella. I found the horror extreme, even considering that I read the work of Edward Lee, Matt Shaw, and Bryan D. Smith, so I kept my teeth gritted and my eyes metaphorically shut throughout. [That's my fair warning for the faint of heart and the queasy of stomach.] I can't even say I liked the story; but I rate it 5 stars for writing, characterization, plot, and execution. It's really well-done. Now I have to restring my wrenched heartstrings.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Review: MUERTE IN LAS VEGAS by Jack Thompson

Review: MUERTE EN LAS VEGAS by Jack Thompson

Generally, I don't have an interest in reading about glitz or gambling. But I do enjoy the Raja Williams mystery series. To my surprise, I was fully captivated from the prologue, some time before the appearance of extraordinarily talented investigator Raja and his hacker sidekick Vinnie. The victim is such an appealing individual, and immediately elicited my empathy. I even liked her parents. The villainous, of which there are multiple, had me spitting nails as they demonstrated the worst failings of human [or should that be "inhuman"] nature. As is often the case, a very few "good" people face several bad, and a vast number of indifferent and apathetic.

Author Jack Thompson maintains the Intrigue level at high throughout, leaving readers emotionally wrung, but satisfied with a champion read.