Friday, July 22, 2016

Mayan Blue by Michelle Garza & Melissa Lason - Review #MayanBlue

My thoughts
Okay, Eli Roth, James Wan, Rob Zombie, or perhaps Guillermo Del Toro, you need to read this book and make it into a movie. Because it already reads like a movie. A really good scary, gory movie. (I think Eli Roth would be good fit for this one, but that's just my opinion).

I have always been fascinated by the Mayans. I long to visit Chichen Itza and the other Mayan archaeological ruin sites. Mel Gibson's Apocalypto is one of my favorite films. Many people are interested in the fact that the Mayans practiced human sacrifice. Yes, that is interesting...and horrifying. However, I find the fact of their vast knowledge to be far more interesting. The creation of their hieroglyphic script, the only known fully developed writing system of the pre-Columbian Americas, as well their art, architecture, mathematics, calendar, and astronomical system, is what I find truly amazing.

The authors, known as The Sisters of Slaughter, have created a unique premise here with one of their characters, a professor and archaeologist, having a theory that some of the Mayan's scattered and found refuge in the mountain regions of the state of Georgia. I find this an interesting and even plausible theory. The Mayan's were so advanced...why couldn't some of them have broke away and migrated elsewhere?

The professor decides to explore his theory, along with his research assistant and a group of college students, traveling to the Blood Mountain area of Georgia. As you can probably imagine, it all goes down hill from there. I keep telling these archaeologists in movies/books...don't move or remove things, damn it. They don't listen. (and that's as spoilery as I'm going to get).

As I mentioned at the beginning, reading this is like watching a good horror movie. Edge of seat, nail biting terror at what is steadily revealed as the story progresses. Forget zombies. These entities (to use a nice word that doesn't even begin to describe them) are grotesque almost beyond description. Also, I love owls, but after this book,..I may have to think on that more. Oh, and don't forget the gore. This is a journey into Xibalba, the Mayan underworld. What can be expected but blood, gore and endless suffering in the world of Ah Puch, the god of death.

All I can say is that Mayan Blue is the BOMB. I was thrilled through every minute of reading it and I read it very fast...and I'm not a fast reader. I can't wait to read more from The Sisters of Slaughter.

About the book
File Size: 488 KB
Print Length: 149 pages
Publisher: Sinister Grin Press (May 25, 2016)
Publication Date: May 25, 2016


Xibalba, home of torture and sacrifice, is the kingdom of the lord of death. He stalked the night in the guise of a putrefied corpse, with the head of an owl and adorned with a necklace of disembodied eyes that hung from nerve cords. He commanded legions of shapeshifting creatures, spectral shamans, and corpses hungry for the flesh of the living. The Mayans feared him and his realm of horror. He sat atop his pyramid temple surrounded by his demon kings and demanded sacrifices of blood and beating hearts as tribute to him and his ghostly world.

These legends, along with those that lived in fear of them, have been dead and gone for centuries. Yet now, a doorway has been opened in Georgia. A group of college students seek their missing professor, a man who has secretly uncovered the answer to one of history’s greatest mysteries. However, what they find is more than the evidence of a hidden civilization. It’s also a gateway to a world of living nightmares.

About the authors
Melissa Lason and Michelle Garza have been writing together since they were little girls and were dubbed The Sisters of Slaughter by the editors of Fireside Press. They are constantly working together on new stories in the horror and dark fantasy genres. Their work has been included in FRESH MEAT published by Sinister Grin Press, WISHFUL THINKING by Fireside Press, WIDOWMAKERS a benefit anthology of dark fiction.

Find them on Facebook!

Praise for Mayan Blue
“From the outset, Garza and Lason let the blood spill, plunging their small cast of characters into the depths of Mayan hell. There’s plenty of action to go around as the group is confronted with a number of horrors, from the labyrinthine and booby-trapped maze of the newly discovered Mayan temple to the angry gods and their owl-headed, sharp-clawed servants.” –Michael Hicks, Author of Convergence

“Their short works are wonderful to read. However this book proves that they can tackle longer works without missing a beat.” –Tom, GoodReads

”These two show no quarter dragging the characters--and by extension, the reader--into the depths of the Mayan version of Hell. There's vividness to the scenes they craft that made me want to make sure I was reading in full daylight, or at least with most of the lights on.” –John Quick, Author of Consequences

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Friday, July 1, 2016

Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet by #AdamHowe - Review

My thoughts
Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet is a book of three horror novellas that really takes you on a ride...and what a wild ride it is!

Damn Dirty Apes is a little yarn about a washed up boxer turned bouncer, who reluctantly joins the hunt for a skunk ape, a local legend (sort of like Bigfoot, but much more stinky, apparently). This one was pretty funny and suspenseful at the same time. I could totally see it as a movie on the SyFy Channel. Yeah, I have a thing for those movies. What can I say...

In Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet, we get a bit of The Deliberate Stranger mixed in with The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, or maybe Wrong Turn. I haven't decided yet. Just when you think Ted Bundy emulator, Terrence Hingle is the worst ever, here come the Ritter brothers. Who is worse? Well, you'll have to read to find out. Let me just say that if you like the afore mentioned movies, then this is the story for you.

Gator Bait is the final novella and what a finale. Hammond has a thing for the ladies, but after his latest encounter with the husband, he is sworn off dames until...would that he had listened to himself. Finding himself working for a backwoods mafioso with a giant gator for muscle, he soon finds himself ignoring his own advice about messing with dames. His boss has a looker of a wife, and she's a damsel in distress. Men. Try thinking with the right head. Might not be a bad idea.

This trio of novellas is damn good pulp fiction/horror. The stories are quite graphic and twisted, but any lover of horror worth their salt will recognize the brilliance in this book. Damn fine writing too.

About the book
Publication Date: Nov. 2, 2015
Publisher: Comet Press
Publication Length: 250 pages

From Adam Howe, winner of Stephen King’s “On Writing” short story contest, comes three original novellas of hardboiled crime, graphic horror and pitch-black gallows humor.


Washed-up prizefighter Reggie Levine is eking a living as a strip club bouncer when he’s offered an unlikely shot at redemption. The Bigelow Skunk Ape – a mythical creature said to haunt the local woods – has kidnapped the high school football mascot, Boogaloo Baboon. Now it’s up to Reggie to lead a misfit posse including a plucky stripper, the town drunk, and legend-in-his-own-mind skunk ape hunter Jameson T. Salisbury. Their mission: Slay the beast and rescue their friend. But not everything is as it seems, and as our heroes venture deeper into the heart of darkness, they will discover worse things waiting in the woods than just the Bigelow Skunk Ape. The story the Society for the Preservation of the North American Skunk Ape tried to ban; Damn Dirty Apes mixes Roadhouse with Jaws with Sons of Anarchy, to create a rollicking romp of 80s-style action/adventure, creature horror and pitch-black comedy.


Escaped mental patient Terrence Hingle, the butcher of five sorority sisters at the Kappa Pi Massacre, kidnaps timid diner waitress Tilly Mulvehill and bolts for the border. Forcing his hostage to drive him out of town, it’s just a question of time before Tilly becomes the next victim in Hingle’s latest killing spree. But when they stop for gas at a rural filling station operated by deranged twin brothers, Dwayne and Dwight Ritter, the tables are turned on Hingle, and for Tilly the night becomes a hellish cat-and-mouse ordeal of terror and depravity. The meat in a maniac sandwich, Tilly is forced against her nature to make a stand and fight for survival. Because sometimes the only choice you have is to do or die…to Die Dog Or Eat The Hatchet.


Prohibition-era 1930s… After an affair with the wrong man’s wife, seedy piano player Smitty Three Fingers flees the city and finds himself tinkling the ivories at a Louisiana honky-tonk owned by vicious bootlegger Horace Croker and his trophy wife, Grace. Folks come to The Grinnin’ Gator for the liquor and burlesque girls, but they keep coming back for Big George, the giant alligator Croker keeps in the pond out back. Croker is rumored to have fed ex-wives and enemies to his pet, so when Smitty and Grace embark on a torrid affair…what could possibly go wrong? Inspired by true events, Gator Bait mixes hardboiled crime (James M. Cain’s The Postman Always Rings Twice) with creature horror (Tobe Hooper’s Eaten Alive) to create a riveting tale of suspense.

Listen to this sample reading from the book over at YouTube from the folks at Manor House:

About the author
Adam Howe writes the twisted fiction your mother warned you about. A British writer of fiction and screenplays, he lives in Greater London with his partner and their hellhound, Gino. Writing as Garrett Addams, his short story Jumper was chosen by Stephen King as the winner of the On Writing contest, and published in the paperback/Kindle editions of SK’s book; he was also granted an audience with The King, where they mostly discussed slow vs. fast zombies. His fiction has appeared in Nightmare Magazine, Thuglit, The Horror Library, Mythic Delirium, Plan B Magazine, and One Buck Horror. He is the author of two collections, Black Cat Mojo and Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet, plus the eBook single, Gator Bait. Future works include Tijuana Donkey Showdown, One Tough Bastard, and a crime/horror collaboration with Adam Tribesmen Cesare.

Find him on Twitter at @Adam_G_Howe.

Praise for Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet
"It's an explicit, hard-hitting, twisted funhouse ride into pulpish horror wrapped loosely in a tattered skein of irreverent, jet black humor. In short, it's a freakin' blast." --Walt Hicks, author of Dirge of the Forgotten

“With Die Dog Or Eat the Hatchet, Adam Howe hasn’t written one of my favorite books of the year, he’s actually written three of my favorites. Stories that are tight, toned, and genre-confounding. Horror fans and crime fans are going to come to blows over who gets to claim Howe as one of their own, but they’re both going to be wrong because Howe’s his own thing.” – Adam Cesare, author of Tribesmen and Mercy House

“The recipe for Adam Howe’s DIE DOG OR EAT THE HATCHET is: Two parts Joe Lansdale, One part Justified, and a heavy dose of WTF. The result is a swampy cocktail darker than any backwoods hayride, stronger than the meanest Sasquatch, and crazier than anything you’ll find chicken-fried at your local state fair.”—Eryk Pruitt, author of Hashtag and Dirtbags

"Adam Howe proves with the three stories in this book that he can basically write anything. And write it very well indeed. To summarise: A three novella collection that you absolutely must have in your collection. I give this one the highest possible recommendation that I can." -Nev, Confessions of a Reviewer

"Adam Howe’s “Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet,” is equal parts terror and fun, his dark comedic voice dances through each of the works in this collection to create engaging stories filled with bars, dames, rabid dogs, and an ape with one hell of a right hook."(Nathan Crazybear/Splatterpunk Zine)

"Once again this author has sucked me into the darkness of his stories and unleashed the twisted, disgusting and stomach churning madness that I come to expect. In fact, I would have been very disappointed if this book was not even more mind-blowing than Black Cat Mojo. And he did not disappoint. Hats off to Mr Howe for creating this magnificent novella of pure horror. I would definitely recommend this to readers of horror and make sure you buckle up as you will be in for the most twisted ride of your life!" -Crime Book Junkie

"I'm pretty certain that whatever genre you like to read, be it pulp, noir, horror, anything really, you will find something to enjoy here. It's fast paced, action packed and brilliantly written. Comet Press has got a diamond on their hands! 5 stars" -Adrian Shotbolt

Buy the book
Barnes and Noble

Want to Feature Adam Howe?
If you would like a copy of the book for review or to conduct an interview with Adam Howe, please contact Erin Al-Mehairi, Publicist, at Hook of a Book Media:

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