Tag Archives: horror

The Devil’s Shadow by BJ Edwards Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

After a powerful and deadly creature is unleashed, the group of government agents must team up together to stop the monster as lawlessness and beastial behavior runs rampant in the world in the action-packed and visceral novel “The Devil’s Shadow” by BJ Edwards.

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The Synopsis

In a vault beneath the Mediterranean Sea, a creature from myth and folklore sleeps. Government agents David Coswell and Hannah Martin join forces to find and study the creature with the hopes of harnessing its power for their country’s good. Accidentally, they release the creature and London is plunged into chaos. Lawlessness and hedonism spread as Lord of the Flies regains his strength and uses violence and fear to build his new kingdom.

David Coswell, along with his ‘handler’ Sentinel Nutbeam, retired soldier Nigel Carter, and Spanish matriarch Maria Perez help the Prime Minister confront the beast and take back control of a fractured country.

The Devil’s Shadow is a fast-paced supernatural thriller. Sometimes scary, sometimes sexy and always exciting, it is an absorbing tale of friendship, loyalty, faith and belief.

The Review

A shocking and engaging story, author BJ Edwards does an amazing job of drawing the reader in with a unique blend of secret spy work and sexual buildup with terrifying horror themes and haunting writing that conjures up powerful imagery in its delivery. The author does an excellent job of throwing twists and turns in the narrative that changes the direction of many of the story’s protagonists throughout the narrative. Readers will be shocked at the major character growths that occur, in particular for Hannah, as she and others find themselves forced to become something they never thought possible in the face of great evil.

This is definitely a very adult novel, with powerful imagery that explores chilling moments between the creature and his new acolytes, as well as action-packed scenes that keep the adrenaline pumping and readers on the edge of their seats as the final remnants of humanity’s heroes come together to face an unstoppable threat. Aside from a few spelling and grammatical errors here and there, the story flowed really well and did a great job of pacing the major plot points also. 

The Verdict

A memorable, twisted and haunting and well-written novel, “The Devil’s Shadow” by BJ Edwards is a must-read horror thriller like no other. An emotional rollercoaster for many of the characters of this narrative, the lengths humanity are willing to go to in order to do what’s right, as well as the depths humanity will plunge itself out of either fear of power, makes this a brilliantly devilish read that fans of the genre won’t soon forget. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 8/10

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About the Author

BJ Edwards was born in Wolverhampton in the winter of 1975, and grew up in Middlesex and Worcester. BJ has always been fascinated by anthropology, theology, archaeology and prehistory. His degree is in English literature and he taught English before taking up writing full time.

As well as writing historical novels, BJ also writes short stories, plays and poems. Allied to this, he writes articles and regularly “tweets.”

BJ is passionate about sport and exercise – he holds belts in Kung-Fu and Judo, he rows at his local rowing club, trains regularly and enjoys the outdoors, films, music and books.

http://bjedwards.co.uk/

Never Never by Liz Butcher

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A seasoned detective haunted by her past finds herself drawn into the search for a missing teenage girl, and soon discovers the case has haunting connections to her in author Liz Butcher’s “Never Never”. 

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The Synopsis

More than 20 years after her abduction at the hands of the elusive Pan, Wendy Darling is all grown up and a successful detective. But when a local girl vanishes in the middle of the night, her past comes rushing back.

Grieving the death of her mother, Detective Darling wants nothing more than to throw herself back into work. When the Lord Mayor’s daughter, Rosalie, vanishes, she insists on taking the case, triggering memories of her own past abduction. For years, Wendy struggled with her nonsensical memories of her captor, who she only knows as Pan. Yet the more she uncovers about Rosalie’s disappearance, the more Wendy is convinced her worst nightmare has come true—Pan’s back. Her fears are confirmed when the girl suddenly reappears and Wendy realises she’s walked straight into Pan’s trap…

The Review

One of the best reads of 2021 so far! Liz Butcher has worked her magic once more, bringing a chilling retelling of the classic Peter Pan mythos and putting a series of twists and turns into the narrative to keep the reader invested heavily. The novel does an excellent job of pacing the story, slowly building a relationship between Wendy the protagonist, and the audience as the history of the Darling Family is revealed. 

The character development was some of the best work to emerge thus far this year. Wendy is a force to be reckoned with, fighting her past trauma while trying to find this young girl before it’s too late. Yet the revelation of the girl’s abductor and their ties to Wendy’s own case decades earlier make for some interesting developments. The author has managed to craft a new legacy for Pan himself, marking a dark and villainous turn that will shock and amaze readers. His connection to an ancient mythological being will add an entirely new depth to this rich story, making this something fans of fantasy and horror will not be able to put down.

The Verdict

A mesmerizing, haunting, and highly entertaining read, author Liz Butcher’s horror retelling of the fantasy classic in her novel “Never Never” makes this a must-read novel and a contender for novel of the year of 2021. A book that readers will flock to over and over again, a twist ending that leaves readers hanging off the author’s every word makes this reader eager to see if the author will tackle the narrative again in a sequel. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Liz Butcher resides in Australia, with her husband, daughter, and their two cats. She’s a self-confessed nerd with a BA in psychology and an insatiable fascination for learning. When she’s not writing or spending time with her family, Liz enjoys road trips, astronomy, music and knitting.

https://www.lizbutcher.com.au/

To Kill a King (A Hollystone Mystery #4) by W.L. Hawkin Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A leader and high priest of a powerful coven, Sandolino Estrada must travel to Iron Age Ireland to find and save his friend Sorcha from powerful Druids while still grieving the loss of his beloved lover in author W.L. Hawkin’s “To Kill a King”, the fourth novel in the Hollystone Mystery series.

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The Synopsis

“Sorcha’s fingers flew to the fey butterfly tattooed on the back of her neck. Sometimes the butterfly brought her joy; other times, inspiration, but always a sense of hope. And she needed all three in this moment for her heart was breaking to see her man so broken.”

Sorcha just wanted to warn Ruairí of his fate until she saw him and fell in love. How could she leave him to be ritually murdered and cast in a bog to cure for two thousand years?

Though he’s lost and grieving the loss of his lover, when Estrada realizes his friend, Sorcha, is trapped in Iron Age Ireland, he demands that Cernunnos take him and Dylan back through time to rescue her. The Horned God states the rules: you cannot change history or develop bonds with anyone. How can Sorcha, the spirited archaeologist, survive this prehistoric warrior culture? Assuming she’s fey, Ruairí’s unscrupulous rival wants her power; but worse still, Ruairí’s lover, the wicked Crow Queen, wants her dead.

Can Estrada use his Wiccan powers and skills to defeat Iron Age Druids and bring his friends home?

A spin-off of To Sleep with Stones, book four tells the story of archaeologist Sorcha O’Hallorhan’s deepest desire. Buy this romantic, time-traveling, prehistoric thriller today and find out what it takes To Kill a King.

The Review

A wonderful blend of fantasy, horror, sci-fi, and mystery, author W.L. Hawkin does a marvelous job of crafting a narrative that speaks to the reader and eloquently paces the story so that not everything is revealed at once. The author explores historical fiction as well in this narrative, taking readers into a turbulent and fascinating period of history with the Iron Age of Ireland. The setting becomes just as much a character in the narrative as anyone else, making a memorable and insightful journey for both the reader and the cast of characters.

The protagonist, Estrada, really is the heart of this tale. While readers are able to delve into the hearts and minds of characters like Sorcha and Dylan, and how they evolve and grow in this novel, it is Estrada that provides the bulk of the emotional and creative aspects of the novel and its themes. The pain of loss and the need to make amends drives Estrada through much of this novel, and his complexity and compelling nature draw the reader in immediately, marking an invigorating protagonist in this memorable series. 

The Verdict

An entertaining, genre-defying, and lengthy yet memorable read, author W.L. Hawkin’s “To Kill a King” is a fantastic spin-off and next chapter in the Hollystone Mystery series. While knowing the history and events of the past books is helpful to newcomers, it is not always necessary as the author writes in a way that speaks to new and existing fans of this heart-pounding series, and makes for a mesmerizing read. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today! 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

W. L. Hawkin writes edgy urban fantasy with a twist of murder. Described as “intoxicating, lush, magically-edgy, page-turners,” her Hollystone Mysteries series features a coven of local witches who solve murders using their wits and ritual magic with a little help from the gods. Wendy is also a published blogger, book reviewer, Indie publisher, and poet, with a background in Indigenous Studies and English literature. She loves myth and magic, so when she’s not writing, she’s studying Druidry, shamanism, and mediumship. Although she is an introvert, in each book, her characters go on a journey where she has traveled herself.

https://bluehavenpress.com/

Winter Comes (When Winter Comes #6) by Daniel Willcocks Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A small Alaskan town faces the end as the storm that has been raging around them and the threats it has brought begin the endgame in author Daniel Willcocks’s “Winter Comes”, the sixth book in the When Winter Comes series.

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The Synopsis

The forest is quaking, the storm closes in, an ancient darkness is awakened…

The endgame nears. The storm has brought them into its heart, and in its center a secret force, long hidden, wakes from slumber. Will those whom the storm has corralled be able to take on the monsters that the world has forgotten?

Or will the darkness take what it’s owed?

Cody struggles to come to terms with the reality of his mysterious messenger. Tori and Oscar plot their way inside the Drumtrie Forest. Alex and his charges stumble upon the very thing they thought they’d never find.

And, Karl… Karl will do whatever it takes to ensure that his new masters are served.

Only, the Masked Ones serve a master of their own. And he is hungry.

“Winter Comes” is the sixth tale in the serialized apocalyptic horror, “When Winter Comes,” with new episodes released monthly. 

The Review

What a powerful and impactful horror read! The author astounds readers with a wholly unique story that blends the terror of isolation with the fear that monsters often bring. Immediately the atmosphere of the narrative reminded me of Steve Niles’s “30 Days of Night”, with powerful and deadly creatures attacking a small Alaskan town that has been cut off from the world via a powerful storm. 

The author does an incredible job of crafting a story that not only serves as a fitting end to a terrific series but allows newcomers to enjoy the narrative as well, (for which I am one of them). The utilization of the creatures the author chose for this narrative was an inspired choice, as the creatures are known enough to not be obscure but are not as utilized in pop culture as saying vampires or werewolves, creating a new mythos and elevated level of fear for those not as familiar with them. 

The core of this story remains the amazing character development. The author’s writing is superb, bringing readers into the action immediately and creating a series of characters within this small town that not only highlights the horror of what they are facing but the sense of community that comes with a tale of survival such as this. As isolating as the overall setting is, the survivors having endured separate attacks soon turn to a community facing off against a powerful threat. 

The Verdict

A brilliant, engaging, and chilling horror story, author Daniel Willcocks’s “Winter Comes” is a must-read novel and fitting end to a powerful series. With twists and turns the reader will be shocked to see and both satisfying and emotional conclusions to these character’s stories, readers will not be able to put this book down. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author 

Daniel Willcocks is an international bestselling author and podcaster of dark fiction. He is the CEO of Devil’s Rock Publishing, one fifth of digital story studio, Hawk & Cleaver, co-producer of iTunes-busting fiction podcast, ‘The Other Stories,’ as well as the host of the ‘Great Writers Share’ podcast, and the ‘Next Level Authors’ podcast.

Residing in the UK, Dan’s work explores the catastrophic and the strange. His stories span the genres of horror, post-apocalyptic, and sci-fi, and his work has seen him collaborating with some of the biggest names in the independent publishing community.

Find out more at danielwillcocks.com

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08JQL7WXT/ref=x_gr_w_glide_sin?caller=Goodreads&callerLink=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.goodreads.com%2Fbook%2Fshow%2F55743120-winter-comes&tag=x_gr_w_glide_sin-20

Fear and Longing in Los Angeles (A Canadian Werewolf Novel) by Mark Leslie Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A successful author who also must contend with the curse of the lycanthrope travels to LA to assist in the script for one of his books latest adaptions, and comes across a mysterious woman and B-Movie nightmares in author Mark Leslie’s “Fear and Longing in Los Angeles”, the latest in the author’s acclaimed series, “A Canadian Werewolf”. 

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The Synopsis

WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE.

If New York is the city that never sleeps, then L.A. is the city where you have to sleep with one eye open.

Michael Andrews learns quickly that it’s not just the cut-throat world of Hollywood you need to fear. There’s something deeper, darker, and far more disturbing lurking just beneath the shadows of the city, waiting for any moment of vulnerability to grab you by the throat.

An extended trip to Los Angeles to be on set for the movie adaptation of his latest novel leads Michael into a twisted and macabre underworld where he becomes entangled with an intriguing, sexy, and mysterious woman. At times she seems just what he needs in order to finally get over the unrequited love of his ex-girlfriend; but at other times, she appears to be the gateway to a Pandora’s box of B-movie nightmares.

Can he trust her? Can he trust himself with her?

Michael’s supernatural wolf-enhanced powers and special abilities might not be enough to survive this particular harsh and gritty jungle and the unique and deadly predators that crawl out of the shadows.

The Review

This was a truly engaging and entertaining read. The author has crafted a unique world full of paranormal creatures and relatable characters. Although I am a newcomer to this series, the author writes in a way that allows each book to stand on its own while creating a new layer to the mythos the author has crafted for this series. 

The protagonist is the heart of this story. While many of the side characters add depth to the narrative, the beating heart is Michael’s journey. Balancing his supernatural powers and gifts with the more emotional core of his story, from the heartbreak of his relationship with Gail to meeting the mysterious and alluring Lex as he navigates the dark underbelly of Los Angeles makes his story really shine brightly. Pair this with the underscoring of political themes as a group of hateful domestic terrorists begins attacking the citizens of LA, and you have a fantastic new horror and action thriller.

The Verdict

A brilliant, action-packed, and emotionally driven thriller, author Mark Leslie’s “Fear and Longing in Los Angeles” is the perfect next chapter in the Canadian Werewolf series. The story immediately draws the reader in, and the twists and turns Michael’s story takes as he becomes closer and closer with Lex and gets involved in stopping this cult/terrorist organization makes for entertaining journey readers won’t be able to put down. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Mark is a writer, editor and bookseller who was born and grew up in Sudbury, spent many years in Ottawa and Hamilton and currently lives in Waterloo, Ontario.

When he is not writing, he tacks “Lefebvre” back onto his name and works as a book industry consultant, having been a bookseller since the 1992, the same year his first short story was published.

Apart from publishing novels and non-fiction paranormal explorations under the name Mark Leslie, having works occasionally appearing on his mother’s refrigerator door under the name Mark Lefebvre, and podcasting and consulting about the book industry under the name Mark Leslie Lefebvre for his Stark Publishing/Stark Reflections brand, Mark is a lover of craft beer.

When he’s not enjoying craft beer or playing around with his three given names, he can usually be found wandering, awestruck through bookstores or libraries. 

http://markleslie.ca/

Interview with Author Jennifer Anne Gordon

Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?

Hello! Thanks for having me for the interview. My name is Jennifer Anne Gordon, and up until the pandemic started, I was a professional Ballroom dancer and performer. I live in New Hampshire with my amazing husband and our silly dog. I love travelling and photography, specifically photography of abandoned and haunted places. 

I have always in some way, or another been a writer, even when I was small. I would write short stories and little plays that I would force my mother to act out with me. As I got older, I focused more on poetry as well as publishing an indie comic and I did some freelance journalism as well. 

I always wanted to write a novel, but somewhere along the way I lost confidence. A few years ago, I decided to reclaim that confidence and just try writing a novel, I had no idea how it would go, if it would work but it did. The novel I wrote was called Beautiful, Frightening, and Silent and that went on to win the Kindle Award for Best Horror novel for 2020, as well as became a finalist for several other awards.

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What inspired you to write your book?

There are always stories in my head, they play there like a movie. The real inspiration comes when I can’t hold them in any longer. My latest book “When the Sleeping Dead Still Talk” is the second part to my Victorian Horror series “The Hotel”. It follows the story of Francis who was a supporting character in “From Daylight to Madness”. He, Francis was my inspiration, I felt so strongly about him and knew that there was so much more to him that I could not explore in the first book that I knew I had to tell his story. The character is very much a mystery. He is very enigmatic in the first novel, and “Sleeping Dead” gives the readers a chance to take a very deep dive into his psyche. It reads like 200 pages of poetic nightmare.

What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

I think as a horror writer I want people to see beyond the genre to the emotions that cause “the horror”. In this novel it concentrates on childhood trauma, and grief. I am not sure if it is a message, but I do like to explore grief in my horror. There are people who may not think they like horror, I don’t think that there is anyone who has never experienced grief. So, in many ways, the books are a pleasurable terror as they can act as a love letter to loss. “When the Sleeping Dead Still Talk” is also in many ways a love story, so there is an element f transcendence to the story, and the question of what it means to love someone, what if that person is dead? What if that person you love is a hallucination? Do these things discount it as real love? 

What drew you into this particular genre?

I like to blame it on the fact that I ‘accidentally read” Pet Sematary by Stephen King when I was 10, but I think my fascination with all things “dark” must have started before that. I lived pretty close to a cemetery and the neighborhood kids would play there (there and the power lines). I also think that living in New England must have played a part in it as well. New England is very proud of their ghost stories. There is also the fact that the Salem Witch Trials took place near by and when we were little, we were taken to places like the Witch Museum, or the House of Seven Gables on School trips. There was always something intoxicating about the “what if” behind all of these stories that sent chills down my spine. I always go back to the same words. Pleasurable Terror.

If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?

This is a great question. I think I would have to say I would want to sit down with my character Agnes, who was a supporting character in From Daylight to Madness, as well as When the Sleeping Dead Still Talk (she has a larger role in that book) and ask her specifically about what was going through her mind the “first” time she shot her father. I would love to know what she thought of as she pulled the trigger, and then find out what went through her mind when he lived. (I am referencing a specific thing in the novel From Daylight to Madness, a comment that a character makes about her.) Then after that I guess I would ask her if she has enough story for me to write a book about her … because I keep coming back to her in my head.

What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

For me it has been Facebook. I know some authors swear by Twitter or Instagram, but for me it’s Facebook. I think it helps that my podcast also streams live on Facebook so it is where I centralize my focus. I do love Instagram though, as a photographer it’s a great place to promote in a visual way.

What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

Don’t let the insecurities in your head convince you that you can’t do something. I would also suggest to people starting out (and even not starting out) to never stop pushing yourself, write in other genres, take classes, experiment with style, write the story you want to write!

What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

Yes! I have a new novel being released this summer. I believe at the end of June or early July, I will know more soon. It is Literary Fiction with elements of ghost fiction, body horror, and some medical suspense, while still remaining very much a literary novel. It is called Pretty/Ugly.

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About the Author

Jennifer Anne Gordon is a Gothic horror novelist. Her work includes Beautiful, Frightening and Silent (2020) which won the Kindle Award for Best Horror/Suspense for 2020, and From Daylight to Madness (The Hotel book 1), and When the Sleeping Dead Still Talk (The Hotel book 2).

She had a collection of her mixed media artwork published during spring of 2020, entitled Victoriana: mixed media art of Jennifer Gordon

Jennifer is one of the hosts as well as the creator of Vox Vomitus, a video podcast on the Global Authors on the Air Network, as well as the Co-Host of the You Tube Channel “Talk Horror to Me”. She had been a contributor to Ladies of Horror Fiction, as well as Horror Tree.

Jennifer is a pale curly haired ginger, obsessed with horror, ghosts, abandoned buildings, and her dog “Lord Tubby”.

She graduated from the New Hampshire Institute of Art, where she studied Acting. She also studied at the University of New Hampshire with a concentration in Art History and English.

She has made her living as an actress, a magician’s assistant, a “gallerina”, a comic book dealer, a painter, and burlesque performer and for the past 10 years as an award-winning professional ballroom dancer, performer, instructor, and choreographer.

When not scribbling away (ok, typing frantically) she enjoys traveling with her fiancé and dance partner, teaching her dog ridiculous tricks (like ‘give me a kiss’ and ‘what hand is the treat in?’ ok these are not great tricks.) as well as taking photos of abandoned buildings and haunted locations.

She is a leo, so at the end of the day she just thinks about her hair.

https://www.jenniferannegordon.com/

Everyday Monsters by Travis Betz Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A young man seeking vengeance after his parents were framed for a horrific crime is forced to share a body with the incorporeal form of an ancient creature in author Travis Betz’s dark horror comedy, “Everyday Monsters”.

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The Synopsis

Derek Stabbers wants revenge. He’s been planning to get it ever since his parents were convicted of the brutal murders of several neighbors. The state blamed mental illness; Derek blames monsters.

Paxton Hellswood wants to be left alone. She’s barely made it out of the house in the hundred years since she was reborn from the dead, and that’s just fine by her. She’ll take the comfortable embrace of her couch over human interaction any day.

After a series of violent misfortunes, Paxton’s incorporeal form becomes stuck inside Derek, forcing the two enemies to begrudgingly share a body.

Together (as one), they embark on a hilarious and poignant journey that ultimately proves there’s no such thing as monsters—just a world full of terrified creatures all hungry for a connection.

The Review

This was a fantastic read. Fans of dark humor and horror will absolutely love this roller coaster of a read, from the vast amount of supernatural creatures and elements the author infuses into the story to the complex way the author blends humor with deep looks into the best and worst humanity has to offer. 

The story starts off running, introducing hilarious and unique elements to the supernatural story that readers won’t be able to stop chuckling about, from unexpected animals vampires fear to hybrid creatures and secret human servants who get caught up in the middle of this chaos. The best part of the novel however is the very visual way the author writes the book. Each chapter feels like the next scene in a cinematic experience, easily painting an image in the reader’s mind.

The Verdict

An exhilarating, action-fueled and darkly humorous horror novel, author Travis Betz’s “Everyday Monsters” is a must-read book. The author perfectly captures a unique voice that explores humanity in a funny yet gritty way. If you haven’t yet, be sure to preorder or grab your copy of Travis Betz’s “Everyday Monsters” today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Author and filmmaker Travis Betz has been enjoying a growing audience for years with his cult feature films, Lo, The Dead Inside, and Joshua, as well as his popular series of construction paper short films.

Travis has had screenplays on both the prestigious Blacklist and Hitlist, the former currently in development with Red Hour Films. He has written and developed projects for Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Amazon Studios, Shudder, Comedy Central, BOOM! Comics, Warner Brothers, Dreamworks, and more.

https://www.instagram.com/travisbetz/

Ekleipsis by Tamel Wino Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

What happens when ordinary people give into their darker nature? Find out in this amazing collection of short stories from author Tamel Wino, titled “Ekleipsis”. 

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The Synopsis

The sun has finally set on humanity…

What happens when we give in to the darkness?

Ékleipsis is a debut short story collection written by Canadian author Tamel Wino, with hints of Chuck Palahniuk’s and Cormac McCarthy’s stripped, vivid writing styles. This gripping book explores the havoc wreaked when ordinary people abandon their humanity to pursue their darkest desires, and questions just how far people will go to follow their baser instincts.

Each story takes a version of a person we’ve known in our own lives and transforms them into something completely unnerving—yet all too familiar.

These dark, complex characters and twisted tales of the once ordinary will change your perception of humanity forever.

The Review

What a fantastic and well-written collection of short stories. The author does a brilliant job of delving into the darkest parts of human nature and allowing readers to see into the minds of these ordinary people who find themselves pushed into becoming their darkest selves. Pacing is key to this collection of stories, as each tale while short, does an incredible job of building the suspense until the twist ending comes and shakes the foundation of the narrative to its core. 

One story in particular early on that I enjoyed was Closing Costs. The author does a great job of taking readers into the classic affair story gone wrong while getting to see the story from a different perspective of “the other woman”. The author does an incredible job of making these characters feel both vibrant and real all at once and challenges the notion that far too often we see the masks of people they want to show the world, and rarely see the true face beneath the mask. 

The Verdict

A powerhouse collection of short horror stories that are both entertaining and enlightening all at once, author Tamel Wino’s “Ekleipsis” is a must-read book. The author truly is able to showcase the dark psychology of those who are pushed to their limits and those who take the plunge into their darkest desires and gives readers a thought-provoking thrill ride. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Tamel Wino is a horror/thriller short fiction writer from the resplendent British Columbia whose works focus largely on madness and human morality. He attended the University of Western Ontario, majoring in health sciences and psychology which only furthered his interest in human nature.

With inspirations including Alice Munro, Joe Hill, Stephen King, Margaret Atwood and Edgar Allan Poe; Tamel’s expositions are strongly grounded in traditions of dark fiction. Yet, with his bold, evocative narrative voice and incisive plot construction, Wino is paving a new movement within the space.

When he’s not reading or scribbling away on his laptop, Tamel loves listening to jazz, rewatching good ol’ classic movies and travelling.

To get a copy of the book: https://books2read.com/ekleipsis

my website: https://ekleipsis.ca/

instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ekleipsis29/

goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/20895934.Tamel_Wino

book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuiVWiZP13s&feature=youtu.be

Author Interview with Craig DiLouie

Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?

I’d dreamed of being a writer ever since I was very young. Growing up in rural New Jersey, I discovered fiction as a fantastic way to be somebody else and have adventures. After a while, I not only wanted to escape into these incredible worlds, I wanted to create my own for others to enjoy. I produced my first novel back in the 1990s, which never saw the light of day. After lucking out with publication with a small press in 2001, I kept at it until I wrote a zombie novel on a lark before zombies got big, and the rest is history. The success of my zombie fiction got me an agent, which got me into Big 5 publishers like Simon & Schuster and Hachette. I also self-publish series of short, pulpy WW2 actioners, which are a lot of fun and are very popular. It’s been a very long and hard but ultimately gratifying and humbling journey.

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What inspired you to write your book?

The Children of Red Peak is about a group of people who grew up in and survived the horrific last days of an apocalyptic religious group that transforms into a cult. Years later, they reunite to confront their past and the entity that appeared the final night.

I love stories that turn tropes on their head or examine their consequences, and this novel does both, examining a cult from the inside in the past timeline, where the major characters are children, and then showing the pain of surviving a horrific mass death, where it’s now 15 years later. As a psychological thriller with cosmic horror elements, the novel is really about the trauma of survival and how belief can produce a great amount of moral goodness but also madness and evil, with a slippery slope in between.

The original inspiration came from a reading of Genesis, where God tells Abraham to bind his son Isaac on a remote mountain and sacrifice him as a burnt offering. Abraham does it, only to be stopped at the last moment. And I thought, what if that story were told from Isaac’s point of view?

What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

Thematically, it’s about a number of things—family, faith, memory, belonging—but the the overriding theme is that madness and belief are two sides of the same coin, and we have a tendency to think of our relationship with the divine as being on terms we can control and that favor us. Interestingly—and disturbingly—some of the cosmic horror element in the book is really about that cosmic horror being found in conventional religion, which is treated with utmost respect in the book but also questioned by taking its claims seriously. A significant message in the book is that wherever there is chaos and emptiness, humanity’s hunger for meaning will eventually ascribe that chaos and emptiness with meaning and a story.

What drew you into this particular genre?

I’ve always loved speculative fiction—horror, sci-fi, fantasy, dystopian, apocalyptic, you name it—because it lets you take ordinary people and challenge them with extraordinary circumstances. You push somebody to the limit, you really find out what they’re made of, and that revelation also says something about human instinct, which is real, and human morality, which is the story we tell ourselves about who we are and want to be. In The Children of Red Peak, there is a cosmic horror element, but the real horror is in good people doing evil because they believe it is a path to paradise.

If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?

I’d ask one of the characters who possibly ascended where they went and what it was like when they got there. I poured my own yearning for meaning and knowledge of any type of existence after death into the story’s aching soul.

What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

Probably Facebook. No reason for that other than I’m just more comfortable with it. I don’t like creating a persona, which is what you’re supposed to do as a writer to get people to like you as an author distinct from liking your work, but I’ve never been into that. On Facebook, I decided to just be myself, and I value the relationships I have there because they’re real, or at least as real as you can get on the Internet.

What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

Be as prolific as possible, pursue every path to publication with what you do produce, and hope for that X factor in publishing to go your way and create a hit that will lead to more opportunities. The X factor might be described simply as having the right book at the right place at the right time, and there’s unfortunately no way to predict that. Note that success is not an either/or thing, it’s a ladder with dozens of runs, and that there is no objective definition for success anyway. In my view, if you poured your heart out to write a story, you’re a writer and you’re a success, only now you’re ready to challenge yourself to climb the next rung of the ladder.

What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

I’ve been very happy producing these “dime novel” WW2 action series, and I love the model so much I’m looking to produce two such series in 2021, one dealing carrier aviation in the near future, the other dealing with carrier aviation during WW2. At the same time, I’m talking to Hachette to see if I can get some fresh and interesting novel concepts percolating.

Thanks for having me as a guest, Anthony!

(It Was My Pleasure Craig! Thank you for sharing your wonderful book with us.)

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About the Author

Craig DiLouie is an author of popular thriller, apocalyptic/horror, and sci-fi/fantasy fiction.

In hundreds of reviews, Craig’s novels have been praised for their strong characters, action, and gritty realism. Each book promises an exciting experience with people you’ll care about in a world that feels real.

These works have been nominated for major literary awards such as the Bram Stoker Award and Audie Award, translated into multiple languages, and optioned for film. He is a member of the HWA, International Thriller Writers, and IFWA.

http://craigdilouie.com/