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Friday, March 25, 2016

Kristin Dearborn's Woman in White - Review #WomaninWhite


My thoughts
The author has brought together the perfect pairing of horror and science fiction. We're treated to a mysterious woman in white...seemingly a ghost by the traditional standard. Turns out she is much more. It makes for a spooky story indeed.

The character development in this short novella is extraordinary. Each character had such depth, I could actually visualize them in my mind. Usually in a novella, or even a short story, it's over so quickly, there isn't time to feel anything for the characters. That's not true in this excellent little novel.

Frankly, I couldn't put it down. Dearborn has grabbed my attention with this one. I now plan to check out her past offerings, the novels Sacrifice Island and Trinity, and I look forward to her future work. Well done!

About the book
Woman in White by Kristin Dearborn
NOVELLA
Available: Feb 4, 2016
Publisher: DarkFuse
Format: eBook ($2.99)

Rocky Rhodes, Maine.

As a fierce snowstorm descends upon the sleepy little town, a Good Samaritan stops to help a catatonic woman sitting in the middle of the icy road, and is never seen or heard from again. When the police find his car, it is splattered in more blood than the human body can hold.

While the storm rages on, the wave of disappearances continue, the victims sharing only one commonality: they are all male. Now it's up to three young women to figure out who or what is responsible: a forensic chemist, a waitress struggling with an abusive boyfriend, and a gamer coping with the loss of her lover.

Their search will lead them on a journey filled with unspeakable horrors that are all connected to a mysterious Woman in White.


Praise for the book
"Horror born straight from a nor'easter, Dearborn's Woman in White is a great read for a winter night—with a monster I'll never forget." —Christopher Irvin, author of Federales and Burn Cards

"Kristin Dearborn's Woman in White is a rip-roaring monster tale with sharp-eyed characterization and something to say about the power dynamics between men and woman. Thought-provoking and entertaining as hell!" —Tim Waggoner, author of Eat the Night

"Great stuff! Suspenseful, quickly paced, unpredictable and wonderfully evil tale. Kristin Dearborn’s best yet!” —Jeff Strand, author of Pressure


About the author
If it screams, squelches, or bleeds, Kristin Dearborn has probably written about it. She’s written books such as Sacrifice Island (DarkFuse), Trinity (DarkFuse), and had fiction published in several magazines and anthologies. Stolen Away was recently a limited edition offered from Thunderstorm Books, which sold out. She revels in comments like "But you look so normal...how do you come up with that stuff?" A life-long New Englander, she aspires to the footsteps of the local masters, Messrs. King and Lovecraft. When not writing or rotting her brain with cheesy horror flicks (preferably creature features!), she can be found scaling rock cliffs or zipping around Vermont on a motorcycle, or gallivanting around the globe. Find more on Kristin at http://kristindearborn.com/

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Saturday, March 19, 2016

Glenn Rolfe's Things We Fear - Review


My Thoughts
This book is exactly about what the title states...Things We Fear. Whether it be the fear of drowning, or the fear of being attacked, assaulted and even murdered, these fears can be very profound and affect the way we live. On the other hand, if ignored, they can also prove to be our undoing.

Each character, main and supporting, have a fear that they're dealing with. Aaron's is a fear of drowning due to an experience of near drowning as a child, where he also thinks he saw a monster pulling him under. Emily starts to feel fear when her tires are slashed and she wonders who could have done it. Could it have been Matt, the overbearing co-worker who always comes on too strong? Oh no, he's obnoxious, but a stalker (or worse)...no, surely not. And then there's Heather who works as a hotel desk clerk. Heather, whose friend asks her if she ever fears a guest will lure her up to his room and rape or murder her. This plants a fear in the back of her mind...and yet, she ignores it.

In each of these cases, the fears are either acknowledged or ignored, and in one case, the acknowledgement of the fear leads to tragedy. Of course, I'm not going to tell you what happens. You will just have to read it to find out.

Things We Fear packs a lot of punch in its novella format. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys a short, suspenseful read with likable characters.

Read my reviews of Rolfe's other books:

Blood and Rain
Boom Town

About the book
Print length: 98 pages
Publisher: Samhain Horror
Publication date: March 8, 2016

Summer has just begun, and fear is in season.

School’s out, and the faculty at Fairington Elementary School are free for the summer. Emily Young can’t deny her attraction to Aaron Jackson, the Ed Tech from her classroom, but she’s afraid of being hurt again. Meanwhile, Aaron is determined not to let his phobia of drowning prevent him from enjoying the sun and the sand of Maine’s best beach town.

But they’re about to learn real fear. Fairington is home to a monster. Phys Ed teacher Matt Holmes has more to offer the ladies than a perfect smile. He’s a killer and he’s got his sights set on Emily.

Who at Fairington will conquer their fears? And who will fall to a psychopath’s hellbent rage?

Things We Fear is also featured in Rolfe's novella collection...


Where Nightmares Begin
Print Length: 219 pages; 

A collection of the three novellas Boom Town, Abram's Bridge, Things We Fear

Publisher: Samhain Horror
Publication Date: March 8, 2016
Available Print and Digital

Monsters can hide anywhere. Under a bridge, below the earth…or behind a smile.

Abram’s BridgeWhen Lil Ron realizes the beautiful girl he met under Abram’s Bridge is a ghost, he sets out to make things right for Sweet Kate. His quest leads him into a tangle of small-town secrets as he uncovers a story of heartbreak, violence…and fear.

Boom Town
Thirty years after a notorious UFO encounter, the town of Eckert, Wisconsin, is besieged by mysterious rumbles from deep in the earth. As the earthly tremors grow stronger, two pre-teens discover a dislodged pipe spewing a strange, bubbling ooze. Their curiosity unleashes an afternoon of unbridled terror for the entire town.

Things We Fear
Emily Young can’t deny her attraction to Aaron Jackson, the Ed Tech from her Fairington Elementary classroom, but fears she’ll be hurt again. Aaron is determined to overcome his drowning phobia and enjoy the sun and the sand of Maine’s best beach town.

But real fear lurks closer than they think. Fairington harbors a psychopath seething with hell-bent rage—and he’s got his sights set on Emily.


About the author
Glenn Rolfe is an author, singer, songwriter and all around fun loving guy from the haunted woods of New England. He has studied Creative Writing at Southern New Hampshire University, and continues his education in the world of horror by devouring the novels of Stephen King and Richard Laymon. 

He and his wife, Meghan, have three children, Ruby, Ramona, and Axl. He is grateful to be loved despite his weirdness.

He is the author the novellas, Abram’s Bridge, Boom Town, and his latest, Things We Fear (March, 2016), the short fiction collection, Slush, and the novels The Haunted Halls and Blood and Rain (October 2015). His first novella collection, Where Nightmares Begin, will also be released in March 2016. His next book, Chasing Ghosts, will be coming by 2017.

He is hard at work on many more. Stay tuned!


Praise for Things We Fear 
"Things We Fear is a compulsively readable tale of obsession and dark suspense, with one of the creepiest villains I've encountered in recent years." -- Tim Waggoner, author of The Way of All Flesh 

"Glenn Rolfe's new thriller is addictive. A quick, compelling read. Rolfe creates tension with a minimal amount of words. His characters are so well-drawn they come alive (before they die)." -- Duncan Ralston, author of Salvage

"Fast paced and tense, with one of the most interesting monsters I've read about in recent times." -- Patrick Lacey, author of A Debt to Be Paid

"Glenn Rolfe is quickly establishing a name for himself as one of a number of excellent new writers to ensure the horror genre is kept alive and well. His previous books – Abram’s Bridge, Boom Town and Blood and Rain – have also served to show the extensive breadth of his imagination and Things We Fear carries on that trend. Quite simply, each story is fresh, new, exciting, and unpredictable." -- Catherine Cavendish, author of Dark Avenging Angel

"In this frighteningly real look at true horror, Rolfe manages to up the ante of tension while balancing genuinely heartbreaking moments, while showcasing his talent for creating unforgettable characters placed in equally unforgettable moments." -- David, Beneath The Underground

"There is a definite old school feel about this novella. It isn’t an over the top gore fest. Instead, what we have is a tense, psychological thriller that builds steadily towards a fitting climax." -Adrian Shotbolt, at Ginger Nuts of Horror

Praise for Abram's Bridge (a novella within Where Nightmares Begin
"This is a stellar debut from Glenn Rolfe, a tale that will give you chills as much as it will make you question the hardness in men's hearts and the spirit of redemption." -Hunter Shea, Author of The Montauk Monster and Island of the Forbidden

"If you're looking for a page-turning who-done-it with a touch of the supernatural and a solid all around story that satisfies, then look no further." -David Bernstein, author of Goblins and Unhinged

Praise for Boom Town (a novella within Where Nightmares Begin
"Short and sharp, Glenn Rolfe’s BOOM TOWN packs in in for a novella. An excellent blend of horror and sci-fi, with way more character development than you usually see in a shorter work like this." -Russell James, Author of Q Island

"Boom Town is a fun, fast-paced read packed with action, copious amounts of alien slime and an aura of creepiness that is sure to appeal to both horror and science fiction fans." -Rich, The Horror Bookshelf

Purchase Things We Fear 
Samhain

Purchase Where Nightmares Begin 
Amazon (Kindle edition. Print link coming soon)
Barnes & Noble
Samhain

If you have any questions, would like a copy for review or to conduct an interview, contact Erin Al-Mehairi, Publicist, at hookofabook(at)hotmail(dot)com.

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Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Phillip Tomasso's Wizard's Rise - Guest Post


From Zombies to Wizards
In 2012, I signed a contract with Severed Press for a trilogy of zombie novels. To this day, the three books in that saga are still my best selling books. I wrote two more zombie books after the completion of the series. People love zombies. People love horror novels. No way around it.

As a writer, though, I was ready to write something different.

When I started writing books in 2000, I focused on suspense novels. I landed deals with a few up and coming small presses. By 2006, I was doing very well, winning awards, and making a little name for myself.

Life stepped in, and tore my aspirations apart. My marriage was failing. My ex and I seperated. It was devastating. When I moved out, my world crumbled. I’d just finished writing a mystery novel under a pen name, Thomas Phillips. A larger press had bought it, and spent good money on promoting me and the new book (The Molech Prophecy).

My heart wasn’t in it.

To top it off, in December 2008, after 19 years working at the Eastman Kodak Company, I was laid off. I’d spent the last ten years in the legal department. I worked as an Employment Law Paralegal. I spent a full year unemployed.

In 2009, I managed to land a new job. It was working for the City of Rochester as a Fire / EMS Dispatcher at 911. It was a completely different line of work. I worried I’d never make it past the probationary period.

I did. And a whole new inspiration dawned on me.

I was working again. I was rebuilding my life. I was very unhappy. Angry. My ex had, I thought, ruined my life.

The Walking Dead was just gaining momentum. I wanted to tell a different kind of zombie story. I came up with the idea for VACCINATION. The tale revolves around a divorced 911 Dispatcher. When the zombie apocalypse breaks out, he is at work. He spends the rest of the book trying to travel fifteen miles in order to rescue his children.

It was an emotional book to write. The entire series was. The second (EVACUATION) and third (PRESERVATION) continue that journey as a small group of survivors look for somewhere to survive.

I continued the tale with a fourth book, DAMN THE DEAD, taking one of the main characters from the first trilogy to the next level of survival. (There will be more books in this “new” series).

But by 2015, I just couldn’t do it any more. I had grown tired of zombies. My anger, my grief, was spent. I needed a change.

I wanted something with more . . . promise. Something with more . . . hope.

I had notes stored away for a fantasy novel. Aside from fantasy short stories I had written in the ‘90s, I had never written a fantasy novel before. So I researched how to make this happen.

My energy restored. I became excited about the writing process. I had a different message I wanted to share with readers. While the zombie books focused on family, and surviving, and death, and destruction, my new fantasy series (SEVERED EMPIRE), is also about family, but it is also about hope. It is about strength in unity, and the ability to overcome. The possibility to conquer evil. Good rising above evil.

WIZARD’S RISE, the first in the Severed Empire series, let me explore me more. It allowed me to instill my renewed faith in good and in the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. Do not get me wrong. WIZARD’S RISE has plenty of dark, plenty of tension, suspense, and grim . . . but there is more between the narrative I hope readers will take away from the books.

I live life one day at a time. It is not always easy, and though I smile, it is not always good. However, I sincerely hope that my books (from The Vaccination Trilogy, to the Severed Empire Series) provide more than just entertainment to readers. I hope the story in some way resonates with them, that they can see bits of themselves in the characters I’ve created, in the scenes that unfold, and . . . just want more of it.

I will write more horror novels. I am sure of it. They will just be written from a different perch than they had been written on before. I love telling stories. They mean something to me. If I am lucky they will mean something to those who read them as well.

Phillip Tomasso

If people are interested in keeping up to date on my work (fingers crossed), below are some ways!

Website
Email
Twitter
Facebook


Wizard’s Rise
Print Length: 390 pages
Publisher: Mirror Matter Press
Release Date: Feb. 11, 2016

A war is coming. There is no way to prevent it. The only thing for certain is that there will be one loser. . .and one winner. WIZARD’S RISE (A Severed Empire Novel)

For over two hundred years the Rye Empire enforced drastic measures outlawing the use of magic. To avoid capture a handful of remaining Wizards escaped royal persecution and made it into hiding. Shortly after the decree the empire crumbled, but the laws remained in place. . .

The Mountain King’s ambitions of becoming the next Emperor will be realized. With forced help from an enslaved sorceress, he will stop at nothing until he achieves his dreams. The easiest path to victory can be obtained by retrieving buried talismans. With those enchanted items in his possession he can summon the Wizards, steal, and harness their power.

In an effort to save the Old Empire from a growing, sinister magic, seventeen-year-old farmboy Mykal and five friends begin a desperate journey. They must collect the talismans before the Mountain King. Their trek will force Mykal to face fears, and accept truths he’d never known existed. There isn’t much time. A war is coming.

Their chances of winning will depend on whether they succeed or not. If they fail, a terrible darkness will steal the light from the Grey Ashland Realm. . .forever.


About the author 
Phillip Tomasso is the award-winning author of over 17 novels. He began his career writing mystery and suspense novels in 2000. Since, he has gone on to publish books in a wide variety of genres, including Horror, Young Adult, Science Fiction, and Fantasy.

His first short story was published in 1995, and he was paid a penny a word. It was an 8,000-word western.

However, it being a Canadian publication—and at a time, when the U.S. dollar was worth more—his check was for just under $40. It was a great starting point, and has been selling regularly since then.

Although not a full-time writer, Tomasso works a full-time job as well. After 19 years at Kodak as an employment law paralegal, he’s spent the last six plus years a Fire/EMS Dispatcher for 9-1-1. He works the midnight shift, First Platoon, and has found the hours conducive to his creativity.

Tomasso prefers to both read books in the same genres he writes. He has been inspired by the likes of Walter Mosley, the entire Easy Rawlins series. Anything by Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Robin Cook, John Saul, Warren Hammond, Terry Brooks, Terry Goodkind, Charlie Huston’s Joe Pitt novels, and Jim Butcher’s Dresden series. Just to name a few!

Tomasso lives in Rochester, NY with his 3 kids—who are not little any longer. Aside from reading and writing, Tomasso plays guitar, and is an self-admitted horrible singer. He is always at work on a next novel.

For more information, visit Tomasso’s website.

Praise for Phillip Tomasso~
“This is different … confident, addictive storytelling, great characters, and an intriguing plot. You’ll read it fast but remember it for a long time. ” —Lee Child, best-selling author of One Shot and the Jack Reacher series

“(Tomasso) takes the standard fare of the private investigator genre and adds twists and turns to make it anything but standard. Tomasso’s writing is crisp and clear … thoroughly enjoyable.” —Joseph Nassise, author of Internal Games and King of the Dead

“Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island is one of my all time favorite adventure yarns . . . Tomasso has managed to preserve Stevenson’s characters and pacing as the story enters this terrifying new adventure into the land of the living dead. I hadn’t counted on loving this story as much as I did, but it surprised me and delighted me and terrified me every time I turned the page. Great adventure, great thrills, and a terrifying glimpse into the jaws of death. Highly recommended!” –Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Dog Days and Plague of the Undead

“Blood River is a thrilling blast of cryptozoological fun, a wild ride down tropical rivers in pursuit of a terrifying legend. It will leave you hungry for the next catch!” –David Sakmyster, author of The Pharaohs Objective and Jurassic Dead

Purchase Links~
Amazon

To find out more information about Mirror Matter Press, visit their website.


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