Char's Horror Corner

 Welcome to my Corner! I specialize in Dark Fiction reviews including Horror, Dark Fantasy, Splatterpunk, Horror of the 70's & 80's, and Graphic Novels. I also read and review classics, true crime, thrillers and audio books of all genres except Romance.

 

Char’s quotes


 


 

 

 

 

Booklikes-opoly Update!

Way back on July 4th, I landed on Main Street 10.

I finally finished my choice for that space which was Bone White by Ron Malfi.

 

At 384 pages, my bank now stands at: $64.00! 

 

Since it's Friday, I'm going to try to read a book over the weekend, so I can slide one more in before the end of the Booklikes-opoly road! 

Wish me luck!

Bone White by Ronald Malfi

Bone White - Ronald Malfi

In the cold town of Dread's Hand, Alaska, Paul Gallo arrives in search of his missing twin brother. He will never be the same again.

 

“You didn’t arrive in Dread’s Hand, he realized, but rather Dread’s Hand came at you piecemeal, a bit of itself at a time, like someone reluctant to make your acquaintance..."

 

I'm not going to rehash the plot, as the synopsis and several other reviews already do that. I can only tell you how it made me feel. Uneasy. Jumpy. Disconcerted. All these things and more.

 

Ronald Malfi's writing keeps getting better and better. It seemed to me that in this book, the writing disappeared altogether, and the story was directly injected into my brain. Isn't that the best writing of all?

 

Bone White is that feeling you get when you glimpse something out of the corner of your eye, but when you turn there's nothing there. Combine that feeling with the cold isolation and cold people of a small closely-knit, Alaskan town. One that's hiding a secret. Don't expect long drawn out explanations here. Instead, expect crosses, headless bodies and dark shadows.

 

This is the second book I've read this month which will undoubtedly make my best books of the year list. You should read it, so that you can add it to yours.

 

Highly recommended!

 

*Thanks so much to NetGalley and to Kensington for the e-ARC of this phenomenal book, in exchange for my honest review. This is it.*

Norse Mythology written and performed by Neil Gaiman

Norse Mythology - Neil Gaiman, Neil Gaiman, HarperAudio

 

I'm always getting my Gods confused. Roman, Greek and now Scandinavian-I can't keep them all straight! However, this is Neil Gaiman and he reads it himself, so how could I resist?

 

I enjoyed the hell out this! It was hard at first when all the Gods were introduced at once, but there weren't so many that I couldn't keep track. I loved the stories of the time when Thor's hammer was stolen, and when Loki schemed to kill Baldur. My favorite myth, however, was the time when Thor and Tyr were tasked with obtaining a cauldron big enough to brew beer for all of the Gods.

 

Neil Gaiman's reading of these tales was imbued with joy and sadness as the story dictated and I loved it. I've listened to his narrations before, but this was by far my favorite.

 

If you want to learn more about Norse mythology, or if you just want to listen to some entertaining storytelling, this book accomplishes both. Highly recommended!

 

*Thanks to my awesome public library for the loan of this audiobook!*

Bombardier (1944) by Stephen Gilbert

Reblogged from Valancourt Books:

With the release of Christopher Nolan's new hit film DUNKIRK, we thought we'd highlight a title from 2016 you might have missed, Stephen Gilbert's BOMBARDIER (1944). Gilbert, best known as the author of horror classic RATMAN'S NOTEBOOKS (the inspiration for the WILLARD films), took part in the Dunkirk evacuation and describes the experience firsthand in his fascinating, thrilling novel. Check it out here: http://www.valancourtbooks.com/bombardier-1944.html

 

Zomcats! by Jack Strange

Zomcats! - Amanda Horan, Graeme Parker, Jack Strange

 

Zomcats! is the follow up to Celebrity Chef Zombie Apocalypse, (click to see my review),  and one I was happy to discover. The ginger feline, Henderson, was originally brought (back) to life in that book, and he quietly stole the show! This time around, he is the rightful star of the novel. Well, he and the American president which we'll get to in a moment.

 

In this novel, we follow Henderson's travels as the American president visits the U.K., seeking help with the zombie problem. Since the Prime Minister successfully dealt with the celebrity chef zombies in Britain, President Adolf Doughnut wants to see if he can do the same to the zombies in the U.S. Since the two are in an infantile pissing contest, the Prime Minister makes the President come to the U.K. to get the requested aid.

 

President Doughnut is the amalgamation of a few different people and is totally hilarious. Just like in the first book, there are plenty of political observations and commentary here. Even though I thought the first one was a bit sharper, the sarcasm and wit are both evident here in Zomcats! as well.

 

If you are in the mood for a creature feature that contains razor sharp wit as well as bloody, gory and insanely funny zomcat kills, then this is the book for you!

 

You can get your copy here: Zomcats!

 

*I was gifted an e-copy of Zomcats! in exchange for my honest review. This is it!*

Reblogged from Debbie's Spurts:

Nevertheless written and performed by Alec Baldwin

Nevertheless: A Memoir - Alec Baldwin

Nevertheless: A Memoir was exactly what I expected it to be: Alec's life story.  I have always loved his voice and I was thrilled to discover that he performed the audio himself.

 

His childhood growing up on Massapequa, Long Island was interesting. I enjoyed hearing  how his love of books and movies came about and what life was like with 5 siblings. It was also interesting to hear about how his career got started, how his love for politics developed  and what it was like working with various Hollywood actors, directors and agents.

 

He definitely has some choice words for many in the legal field, especially those involved with divorce cases. He explains, or attempts to, the horrible voice mail he left for his daughter and he also talks a bit about his actions towards the paparazzi.

 

Overall, I enjoyed listening to this and learning more about Mr. Baldwin.

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book by Wallace Fairfax

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book - Wallace Fairfax

 

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book , ("How much more black could it be?"), is exactly what you expect and hope it to be-which is FANTASTIC!

 

 

It includes a complete discography and history of the band. It includes close up looks at each individual member, including most of the drummers that are no longer with us.

 

A bio and background information is provided on Marty Debergi, how he came to be turned on to the band, and became interested in making a documentary about them.

 

It has a few tidbits too, such as-remember when David St. Hubbins was talking about the audio books that were read by celebrities of the same last name as the author of the books? The full list is here, such as: The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Anderson as read by Pamela Anderson.

 

Behind the scenes interviews with band members and an entire section on the horrible Jeanine Pettibone who took over as Tap's manager after Ian Faith left.

 

Everything is here: "turn it up to 11", Sh*t Sandwich, the puppet show, "Hello Cleveland!", the Stonehenge monument in danger of being crushed by a dwarf, everything...it's all here. 

 

 

If you are a "Taphead" this book cannot fail to put a smile on your face. If you aren't familiar with the band: buy this book and see the movie, and you soon will be!

 

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book gets my highest recommendation!

 

*Thank you to Edelweiss and to the publisher for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. This is it!*

Reading progress update: I've read 65 out of 128 pages and...

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book - Wallace Fairfax

I've been grinning the entire time! At this point, we are still going through the discography and history of the band. 

 

For instance, the album "The Sun Never Sweats" from 1975. This is the album which featured the lead single "Stonehenge." The band came up with a great idea to have a replica of a stone made as a stage prop. Unfortunately, Nigel got his measurements wrong and Tap ended up with this:

 

 

 

 

The second song on "The Sun Never Sweats:"  "Daze of Knights of Old" 

"elucidates on themes of King Arthur's era and why his table was round, and not rectangular, like most tables."

 

This album came out after "Shark Sandwich." For which Spinal Tap received a two word review: "Shit Sandwich."

 

 

 

Sadly, this was not their first two word review. They previously received one that simply said: "Spinal Crap."

 

 

I am now up to Spinal Tap in the 80's. Of which Nigel said:

 

"The 80's were a blur, really. And not just because I lost my glasses."

 

 

Insane Clown President by Matt Taibbi, narrated by Rob Shapiro

Insane Clown President - Matt Taibbi, Rob Shapiro

 

The only thing I really miss about my Rolling Stone subscription is the reporting of Matt Taibbi. And maybe the scary-ass environmental articles written by Bill McKibben. (I canceled my 25 year standing order because they had the audacity, {stupidity?}, to put the Boston bomber POS on the cover. I'm surprised this Massachusetts girl received her copy intact and not covered in spittle.) When I saw the audio of this book was available at my library, I eagerly put it on hold, but I'm sorry to say I'm a bit disappointed.

 

What I liked about this book was Taibbi's bluntness about the state of our media and the role that it plays in elections. I also liked his exploration of how that role has changed over the years-especially in regards to the 24 hour news cycle that now dominates our airwaves. I also liked the fact that he was hard on Hillary and her campaign. I'm not a Trump fan but I'm not a Hillary fan either. Taibbi went into some depth about how our candidates are selected in this country and it's not by us-America's citizens. It's by money. It's by the press. It's by those powerful people behind the scenes and their machinations. It's disgusting.

 

Regarding the media...all these talking heads and pundits and opinions. What happened to the freaking NEWS? What happened to the facts? I hate to say that Trump is right about anything, but the media is no longer trustworthy, if it ever was. They are out to sell us what they consider news. And guess what? Poverty doesn't sell. No one wants to see homeless people while they're eating dinner. People might turn the channel! No one could go without covering Trump's antics during the campaign, or even now, because people love that stuff! Here we are 6 months into Trump's administration and what has he accomplished? We're all too interested in Russia and Trump's Twitter feed to look too closely. Every time he Tweets the public is distracted. Again.

 

What I didn't like about this book, at least at times, was its flippancy. The campaign drinking games portion could have been funny-if it was done just once. Doing it twice, with lists of rules a mile long was redundant and irritating. The portion about who would play these candidates in a movie was also boring. I love Matt Taibbi's sense of humor and razor sharp wit, but I think these chapters were cheap shots and beneath his abilities and intellect. Then again, the title of the book is Insane Clown President and some of these things ARE insane.

 

Overall, I enjoyed this book and I still love Taibbi. I wouldn't recommend it to Hillary lovers though, unless they are ready to hear some hard truths. I expect that many are not.

On sale

Vision Vol. 1: Little Worse Than A Man (Vision (2015-)) - Mike Del Mundo, Gabriel Hernandez Walta, Tom King Vision Vol. 2: Little Better Than a Beast - Tom King, Michael Walsh
Reblogged from Grimlock ♥ Inhumans:

Amazon daily deal. 

 

Shop here for volume one and here for volume two.

 

It's one of my favorite series!

Reading progress update: I've read 30 out of 128 pages of

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book - Wallace Fairfax

Spinal Tap, The Big Black Book and it's totally hilarious. So far, we have a discography and close ups of the band members. Of course, the drummers must be discussed. For those who don't know, Spinal Tap drummers have a bad record and don't last very long, for one reason or another. 

 

There was a "bizarre gardening accident", a "choking on vomit, (but not his own vomit-"can't dust for vomit"), and two, (count 'em, TWO) spontaneous combustions.

Oh! And one death was a mystery, "best left unsolved."

 

 

"It's just not widely reported."

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book

Spinal Tap: The Big Black Book - Wallace Fairfax

 

I'm happy to be starting this one. This Rock 'n' Roll mockumentary is one of my favorite movies of all time. It's always impressed me that most of it was improvised. Featuring Christopher Guest, (pictured below), Michael McKean, and Harry Shearer, Spinal Tap is a classic comedy with a long list of cameo appearances. It is a MUST SEE! 

 

Gary Gianni's Monstermen and Other Scary Stories

Gary Gianni's Monstermen and Other Scary Stories - Gary Gianni, Gary Gianni

Gary Gianni's Monstermen and Other Scary Stories was a real treat! I knew nothing about what to expect from this volume, (knowing nothing about the Hellboy series, in which these comics were originally released), so I went in with no preconceptions. I was seriously impressed. Here's why:

 

First, I LOVED the stories! The first 2/3 of this are different comics featuring a movie director named St. Lawrence, (who looks a lot like Vincent Price, BTW, and who you would think belonged in the 30's expect for the occasional glimpse of technology), and his friend Benedict a member of the Corpus Monstrum guild. Benedict is an immortal knight and always wears his knight helmet and a tuxedo. (I need to learn more about the background of this character because he was a blast to read about.) Together they fend off plagues of falling skulls, and other monstrous creatures.

 

 

 

 

Second, the last third of the book contains illustrated classic stories by the likes of Clark Ashton Smith, Robert E. Howard, and William Hope Hodgson. I LOVED these! When reading these short stories, I couldn't help but notice how the first 2/3 of the book carried the exact same pulpy, adventure feel that these classic stories originally created. I think Gianni did a beautiful job of carrying on that feel in his comics and in his illustrations of these pulp shorts. In a way, I feel like these were his way of paying tribute to what came before, while also making them his own.

 

Again, I went into this with no preconceptions. I came away with much admiration and respect. I'm going to eventually read the Hellboy comics and I'm definitely going to search out Mr. Gianni and see what else he has on offer, because whatever it is, I'm in!

 

Highly recommended, especially to fans of the classic pulp short stories and to fans of incredible artwork.

 

You can get your copy here: Gary Gianni's Monstermen and Other Scary Stories

 

*Thank you to Edelweiss and to Dark Horse Comics for the e-ARC of this volume in exchange for my honest review. This is it!*

The Necromancer's House by Christopher Buehlman, narrated by Todd Haberkorn

The Necromancer's House - Christopher Buehlman, Todd Haberkorn

 

This book is totally INSANE!!

 

I thought Between Two Fires was crazy, but The Necromancer's House has that one beat. By a mile!

 

Magic is inherent but also can be taught. There are all kinds of spells that may be weaved. There are all kinds of creatures of myth and folklore. There's a meteor! There's a crazy-ass dog... creation. There is the dead founder of AA having conversations through the television. There's a house, filled with many booby traps and spells, and what dark fiction reader doesn't love that? There's also much, much more.

 

I can't even begin to explain this book, nor would I want to try. But what I can say is that I love and respect an imagination that can come up with something this maniacal and satisfying! It was entertaining, but also had parts where the pain was visceral. The characters were well drawn even if many of them were just downright nasty. I have to admit that a few of the characters that I disliked at first became my favorites by the end. I love when that happens.

 

I started with Those Across the River , then read Between Two Fires, and now this one. I'm not sure which of Christopher Buehlman's books I'll read next, but I am definitely going to be reading all of them!

 

I highly recommend this one to lovers of dark fiction, with some magic and myths woven into the narrative fabric. I guarantee you haven't read anything like it! 

A Game of Ghosts by John Connolly

A Game of Ghosts: A Charlie Parker Thriller - John Connolly

 

This time around Charlie Parker is hired to look into the disappearance of Jaycob Eklund. Jaycob is a P.I. that has mysteriously vanished while investigating the history of a group named The Brethren. Louis and Angel get involved and the Collector and his aging father do as well. What FUN!

 

FBI Agent Edgar Ross is the man who hires Charlie and I still don't trust him or his motives. He won't even tell Charlie why he's searching for Eklund. I'm not sure where Mr. Connolly is going with this relationship, but I have a bad feeling about it, for sure.

 

Louis and Angel trade insults as always, but in this book their love became a little more real to me. You'll see why if you read it. (You SHOULD read it!)

 

Also playing a part in this volume are Rachel and Sam, Charlie's ex-girlfriend and (living) daughter, respectively. Rachel, understandably, is still angry and upset after what happened to Sam in the last book and is now taking legal steps regarding Sam's custody. Trusty Moxie, Charlie's lawyer, is on the case. Unfortunately, Rachel doesn't ask Sam how she feels about all this, but Sam makes her feelings known-in a way that is uniquely her own.

 

I loved this book! I believe I am seeing the beginning of the end, off in the distance, and that makes me sad. However, I am hoping that perhaps the series will continue in some other form, I

am hoping for an entire new series featuring Sam and her insane capabilities.

(show spoiler)

But if I don't get I will still be happy, because I believe that the Charlie Parker books have become the best ongoing series out there, bar none. They are consistently interesting, well written and just plain fun-and considering how dark some of them are, that's quite a feat!

 

I love Charlie, Louis and Angel and I love YOU, John Connolly! I can't wait to see what happens next! I highly recommend A Game of Ghosts to fans of the series, and to new fans, (but I strongly suggest you read them in order.)

 

*Thanks to the publisher and to NetGalley for providing an e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review. This is it.*

Currently reading

The Lesser Dead by Christopher Buehlman
Dark Tower: The Drawing of the Three: Lady of Shadows by Peter David, Jonathan Marks, Robin Furth
Progress: 68/128pages
Haunted Nights by Lisa Morton, Ellen Datlow
Progress: 34%
Through A Glass Darkly by Donald Allen Kirch
Progress: 130/292pages

Flag Counter

 

 

Horror Aficionados
Horror Aficionados 11358 members
If you love horror literature, movies, and culture, you're in the right place. Whether it's vampi...

Books we've read

The Stand
Dread in the Beast
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales
Horror Library, Volume 1
Butcher Shop Quartet
Family Inheritance
'Salem's Lot
A Treasury of American Horror Stories
Heart-Shaped Box
20th Century Ghosts
The Revelation
Lowland Rider
Off Season
Neither the Sea Nor the Sand
The House Next Door
The Ceremonies
Nazareth Hill
The Light at the End
Ghoul
Billy


View this group on Goodreads »