Ginger Nuts of Horror
This review of The Terminals: Spark by Michael F. Stewart is the result of a copy sent to Ginger Nuts of Horror in exchange for an honest review.
Everyone who has a Kindle has books on it that they buy and don’t read for months or years. Right? I bought this book in July of last year and although I meant to read it never seemed to get around to it. When it came up for review at Ginger Nuts I thought I would finally give it a go. Why the hell did I leave it so long! Another lesson learnt.
To paraphrase some of the greats, here is your starter for ten, and I've started so now I'll finish. There are those of us out there who like to think that we know it all. Hell I'm one of those people. But when faced with the thousand questions held within this book I quickly realised that I might not know it all.
It's kind of hard to review a book like this, 1000 questions that cover almost every aspect of horror from the populist stuff like good old Freddy to some more obscure corners of the dark realm, this is a comprehensive and well researched book, that doesn't just limit itself to the great and good. I'm sure that no matter what your favourite style or genre of horror you will find something to please you in this book.
It's one of those tomes that not only entertains it also makes you go back and revisit some of those works that have slipped from your memory. This is the perfect book for any fans of the genre. i'm going to take my copy down to Fantasy Con this year and have a quiz off against some the greatest minds in horror. (Of course I'll cheat as I have all the answers, hey this is horror, who says you have to play by the rules.)
Ricardo Bare I hear you ask? Yeah me too. Never heard of the fella but on seeing this short story and reading the blurb I liked what I saw. Turns out I very much liked what I read as well.
Lizzy often plays by herself, having no one she can call real friends. Her mom and dad ask her to go outside to play with their dog Skeebo while they clean the house. This is nothing new. She went to the creek behind her house to play and let the dog roam around. When the dog starts barking and growling she goes to investigate and discovers the dismembered head of a man, floating face up in the water. Her initial thought is to get her parents to call the police. That is until the head starts to sing to her. This is the beginning of probably the most surreal period of Lizzy’s life.
And that’s as far as I can go without totally spoiling things. This is a short story that you could probably read in an hour and a half. It was totally not what I expected it to be but in a very good way.
Mr Bare has written a story that is incredibly dark, surreal and will leave you at times thinking “what am I reading here”. The difference between being a confusing tale that you read with your face scrunched up, and really losing yourself in the story and believing everything you read, is a fine line. I would urge anyone reading it to stay on the light side of that line and just enjoy.
What transpires is a story right out of The Twilight Zone or an old horror flick you might have watched in the 80’s or early 90’s. It has that certain “atmosphere” about it that transports you back to those times and if you enjoyed the films of those days then this is a story for you. You wonder what is happening and then think to yourself “I’ve got it” only to be proved wrong as another little confusing section comes along and gets you wondering once again where it is going.
It looks like this is going to be the first book in a series and I for one would definitely be interested to see how Ricardo Bare is going to expand on this. To me it has the makings of a very cool set of stories almost paying homage to the horror of old.
It has plenty of gore, plenty of “eh?” moments and more than its fair share of old school horror. Well worth the read if you want to kill a couple of hours without taxing the brain too much.
An enjoyable 3 stars from me.
This review of Savages by Christina Bergling is the result of an ARC sent to Ginger Nuts of Horror in exchange for an honest review.
Another new author to me. Christina Bergling is not a name I have heard before but after reading this I reckon I will be looking out for her in the future.
Two survivors battle through everything put in their path in a post-apocalyptic world with only one goal…….to find other survivors. They want to find “normal” humans though. Not the Savages. Travelling alone, they fight, sleep, walk and repeat. Things change dramatically when they come across a new born baby hidden in a cupboard. Their goal now must also include the survival of this new life in the hateful world it has been born into. This does not prove easy.
In a normal, suburban setting, the residents are in the midst of pleasant slumbers following a mid-summer barbeque at Jon' place. Suddenly our hero wakes in the midst of a very strange lightning storm to find his wife missing. As he stumbles around the house and then the immediate neighbourhood looking for her, he comes to realise something is very, very wrong in their close-knit community...
So I land this dream job as a reviewer for Ginger Nuts of Horror. My first “official” job is to review an ARC of Nothing Lasting by Glen Krisch. Who says good things don’t happen?
This is one of those rare occasions that you get 2 reviews from me for one book.
Review 1: It’s Glen Krisch. Buy it. If you have never read him before this will get you hooked.
Review 2: It’s 2009. Noah Berkley’s father has passed away. He has returned to the family home in his father’s hometown of Maple Valley for the funeral and to clear his house. While there he reminisces about the last time he was here, during the winter of 1984 when his life changed forever in ways he could never imagine.....
Please note this book is the second in the A Hollow Dream series, the first being A Hollow Dream Of Summer’s End. This review will have some connections to the first book which could be classed as spoilers so if you want to read it first then check this review out I can understand that. I can also highly recommend reading A Hollow Dream of Summer’s End which is a novella (and currently FREE for the Kindle edition on Amazon and has been for some months), although Eternal Autumn stands up perfectly well by itself.
Aiden Park is 12. He has just died. He knew this anyway. The monsters are coming for him. A stranger appears from nowhere and helps him to escape the monsters through underground tunnels and leads him to the Eternal Autumn and the city of Everland. Aiden’s mind is swimming with questions. Is he really dead? Who are all of the people in the city? Who are the Outlanders and the Dismemberer’s? What magic does the tree give? Does it give a second death or a second chance at life? Aiden needs to firstly discover who is telling him truths and who should never be trusted.
2014 has been a funny old year, one which has seen a lot of mediocre books get way more praise and attention than they really deserved. I have no idea why this is, have we the readers been browbeaten into accepting anything that rises above the vast dung heap of poorly written horror as something that requires heaps of praise? Or have I just become jaded with the whole genre, or maybe it's just me maybe I can't see what everyone else is seeing. Whatever the reason, this was the year I almost gave up on the genre, something I thought I would never do. Thankfully though there were a few shining lights that were published this year that kept me from leaving the genre. While some of these may or may not be true horror these are the books and stories that made my year.
The Exiled by William Meikle kicks off like many a good crime thriller, with its world weary protagonist Detective (Inspector presumably, I must confess I cannot recall, now) John Granger called out to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a young girl from a rough Edinburgh estate. This disappearance may be part of a series. Coming at the investigation from a different direction is Granger's partly estranged brother Alan, an investigative reporter. Both have their various methods and avenues to pursue, but it eventually begins to seem as if there is more than just a child abductor at large. The ominous signs of ritual, the supernatural and the fantastique loom over the events. When the brothers' paths eventually converge, it may already be too late to prevent horrors from being unleashed...
I have made no secret in the past of my love of the writings of Glen Krisch. I make no apologies for it and after reading his latest book, Arkadium Rising, I intend to start shouting it from the rooftops again.
Marcus and Jason Grant are brothers. Jason the sensible one holding down a steady job and doing the chores for mom and dad, Marcus the younger, rowdier one driven by a life of crime and drugs. No one has seen Marcus in a long time when his ex-girlfriend Delany comes looking for Jason. She has heard from Marcus and wants Jason’s help to go get him. When they find him, Marcus seems to be the leader of a band of religious fanatics who all seem to be members of some strange doomsday cult. Marcus and his band are to set in motion a process that will end the world as we know it. Jason has to decide whether to run from Marcus, or run with him.
And there ends what I can say about this book without giving too much away. This is the first book in a trilogy that fans of Mr Krisch like myself have been waiting for with bated breath. The end result is a story that still gets you holding your breath from cover to cover.
It’s a story about the end of the world as we know it. A post-apocalyptic novel if you like. That’s not all it is though. This first part of the trilogy sees us introduced to the main characters in the story but when you start reading, don’t be expecting them to all make it through this first third. This is written in such a way that you grasp the different personalities very easily. There is just the right amount of time taken to introduce each individual so that you think you have known them for years. As it flits back and forwards to different groups at different times, it fits perfectly together. In the run up to the conclusion of this portion of the tale, it reaches fever pitch and raises many many questions leaving you wondering where it will lead to and who will be involved and in what capacity. It’s a wonderful cliff-hanger ending but at the same time would work as a stand-alone novel. One that leaves you thinking about it for a long time when you finish it.
As well as being a novel it raises so many questions about the society we live in today and the type of people we walk amongst. It will make you ask questions of yourself, about your behaviours, your desires, everything that you take for granted and the direction your life is taking you. The biggest question of all is asked near the ending – is what you have believed in all your life the right and true way? I can’t wait for the next instalment to find out.
It’s dark. It’s thrilling. It’s edge of the seat stuff. It’s harrowing at times and enlightening at others. It’s Krisch.
Highest recommendation with 5 big stars.
Reviewed by Nev Murray
ARKADIUM RISING BY GLEN KRISCH
The Arkadium's time has come. A religious cult intent on setting history back ten thousand years, destroying modern man's domination of the planet.
Growing up, the Grant brothers were close, but as they reached adolescence they drifted apart, taking opposite paths into adulthood. Straight-laced Jason works for a small town newspaper. Marcus is into drugs, violence, and self-destruction.
Marcus finds salvation and sobriety when he joins the Arkadium and reaches out to his brother, wanting him by his side to record the new prehistoric era, Arkadium’s era. Jason faces a choice, join his brother in the destruction of humanity, or die like one of the millions of innocents who will fall in the Arkadium's ascent.