|Welcome back my bloody readers! Spring is here but winter is refusing to
give up its grip. I think everyone wants to leave this winter behind and
start fresh with warmer weather and no snow. Well, I have several books
for this change. First is a collection of poems from a different point of view,
a vampire story where vampires are not the most evil thing, a collection of
stories full of beast and demons and lastly a vampire enticing a young lady.
A Quick Look To An Insane Mind by E.N. De Choudens
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not usually a fan of poetry,
even dark poetry. The occasional poem is okay but a collection
is of poems is hard to get through. But De Choudens did some-
thing unique. He has taken a collection of poems with a nar-
rative and ties it all together that makes it feel like a novel.
The collection begins with END, a criminally insane man
who offers to tell his view of his story despite the limitations of
his cell. Through the poems, haikus and narratives, you get a
view of END’s life, what has happened to him and what he sees
as the future of things.
The writing that De Choudens does sets a mood to make
you unsure how you feel about what END does. But just when
you doubt yourself about what his character is, he reminds you that END is a bad
person and is really crazy. It is this off balanced approach that makes you want to
keep reading forward to see what is on the next page. What ties it all together is the
narrative which is used sparingly but effectively
I recommend this books for anyone who enjoys poetry with a little extra
something to keep you on your toes. You can get this book at the usual areas like
Vampire Siege at Rio Muerto at John M. Whalen
I have read my share of vampire books in my time but this is
the first one that has taken place in the wild west. The title and
the cover was cool and gave you the feel of a Quentin Tarrantino
movie. Whalen did a great job in getting you to pick up the book
and he does equally well in telling the story.
The story begins as Mordecai Slate, a bounty hunter of the
supernatural and known for his ruthlessness and to do any job
for the right price. He is hired by Don Pedro, one of the biggest
cattle ranchers to hunt down Kord Manion for killing his daughter.
His only request is that Slate bring Kord Manion to him alive so
that he may kill him. This is not what Slate usually does but
So Slate hunts Kord Manion down and captures him to bring him back to Don
Pedro but this is where things do wrong. On his way back, he rescues a young lady
but get injured and needs to get help. They stop by the nearest town with a doctor
for medical help and then be on their way. But the doctor tricks him and knocks him
Slate knows time is running out because Kord’s brother Dax will be looking for
revenge and will devasted this town just to get to him. Will he be able to escape in
time or will doing it for the money finally catch up to him?
Whalen tells a story full of action and suspense throughout the book. He also
does a great job of setting the mood and time period in which the story stakes
place. His main character, Slate is multi dimensional and not just the money hungry
bounty hunter. He is perceived as one thing but really have doubts about getting
innocents involved. The story has a nice turn at the end that makes it a satisfying
I recommend this book for anyone who likes a good vampire story in a different
type of setting.
What Price Gory? by Terry M. West
This collection of stories by West has quite a list of inter-
esting names for its stories. That in itself made me want to read
further just to see what was behind such names. But West does
a good job matching the content of the stories with the names.
And while there are only a few stories in this collection, he does a
lot with them.
One of the stories that I liked is Held Over. It is about an
elderly man deciding on whether to move on to his second life.
In exchange for handing over and his money when he passes,
he is given a second life and be well taken care of. When he get
too close a look, things don’t turn out like he expected.
Another story that is worth mentioning is Put on a Happy
Face. It’s a story told from the view of a young girl about her and her brother. They
are living on their own in hiding from people hunting them down and them trying to
survive. Her brother wears masks to show the way he feels. But it is not until a
stranger stumbles upon their space that you find out the real reason they are hiding
and the reason for the mask.
Whalen has a nice group of well written stories with each one being different
from the next. As in Held Over, he puts a new spin on an old genre. While in Put on
a Happy Face, he finds a way to make something sinister out of the need to survive.
In each story he leads you to where he wants to take you and you go along for the
I recommend this book for the interesting stories that change with each page.
In The Guest House of the Dead by John Condenzio
Rob Zombie probably couldn’t have thought of a better title
to get you to want to see what’s inside the cover of this book.
We have printed an excerpt of this story in our issue #49. Now
we get the pleasure of reviewing the whole book and Condenzio
does not disappoint.
The story begins with a father and young girl named Sarah
who take in a young lady after a stranger leaves her with them to
deliver a very important message. The young lady, Lilith, be-
comes attached to Sarah almost immediately and they are in-
But since Lilith arrival, strange things begin happening in
the surrounding area as people turn up dead or afflicted with a strange pestilence.
With these event, people start fearing the supernatural. Even Sarah is affected by
the sickness. Is Lilith something more than an innocent girl or is she responsible for
Condenzio shares this gothic story full of ambience as if sitting by the campfire
telling ghost stories. As you are reading it, you feel the tension in the background
as the characters develop and story as slowly revealed. If there is one thing that
could of been done is a clear separation of one scene to the next. But even with
that, it doesn’t take away from the story.
I recommend this book for the person craving the old fashioned story telling that
keeps you on the edge of each word.