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Five Deaths by AJ Brown

Five Deaths is a story about just that, Five Deaths. The story is told by Andrew from his early childhood and first encounter with a ghost to his adult life and continued ghostly encounters. Andrew is a sensitive child that I would classify as empathic. Andrew takes on the responsibility of giving the ghosts he sees peace by killing those that murdered them. This is his story on how they were wronged and what he does to make it right.

AJ Brown went into exquisite detail on how the ghosts were murdered. I could see the gore and imagine their pain and suffering as they died. I had to stop and take a moment a few times because his descriptors had my imagination firing on all cylinders. It felt like I was in the story watching as these tragedies unfolded. I found myself rooting for Andrew to impart his vigilante justice.

Brown’s writing is brutal to its core but thrilling at the same time. He has a way of telling a story that escalates and makes the reader not want to stop turning those pages. Brown even delves into Andrew’s mind to explore some of the psychological ramifications for his deeds. I read this in essentially two days because I could not put it down. This is a great story that explores the darkness of a man that could be lurking in any one of us!

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Encyclopedia Sharksploitanica by Susan Snyder

I started reading this excited to learn more about sharks! Susan Snyder is a marine biologist and surely would have some great insight right? She’s got some insight alright, into some of the worst movies ever made about sharks.

The Encyclopedia Sharksploitanica is essentially a guide to movies about sharks and how they’ve evolved (haha) as technology has progressed. I had no idea how many movies out there ripped off Jaws! She goes into this along with reviewing each movie she watched; the good, the bad, and completely awful.

I decided to give the Sharknado movies a go based on this book. I watched movies 1-3 and I just can’t watch anymore. My husband entered the room about halfway through movie 1 and said I’ve lost brain cells for watching the movie! It’s so bad that it’s funny.

Susan gives us reviews of several other shark movies I’d never heard of. There are a few I’d like to find because of her hilarious reviews. She is candid with her readers and doesn’t mind making fun of herself while reviewing the movies. She incorporates her outrageous sense of humor and has fun with this. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

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The God Provides by Thomas R. Clark

The God Provides is a fun collection of stories based on a fictional family, the McEntires. Known in the Old World as Mac Tires, they settled in the New York area at the dawn of our young nation. Clark shows us the importance of tradition, ritual and loyalty to family and extended family in these tales. Clark creates a world that the reader can easily immerse themselves into and feel like they are in the story watching the action unfold.

The God Provides starts in the present time with two sisters, Rose and Erin McEntire who return home for the last harvest of their parent’s family owned apple orchard. Each subsequent story then goes further back in time expounding more on what we learn about the family in the previous story. Clark successfully weaves us tales that incorporate myth, folklore, supernatural and alternative historical fiction involving the Mac Tire family and their closest kin.

I did not want to put this novella down. I was captivated from the start due to the descriptive depth of the scenery and characters. I hope Thomas R. Clark continues writing about this family and their adventures in the near future. I feel he has a winner with this one! I absolutely loved this book and I know you will too! Grab your copy today!

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3:33 AM by Luke Hindmarsh

3:33 AM is a story that will take you on a wild ride through grief, guilt and exploration. Saffron is a young nurse who experiences a traumatic event while driving home from a late shift. This event “haunts” her by replaying in her dreams and interfering with her everyday life. Her free spirited friend, Lucy, tries to help her cope and suggests some alternative therapies to assist overcoming this event.

Saffron then meets Jack who is unknowingly going through his own challenges with grief due to the same traumatic event. Saffron and Jack learn more about each other and begin a journey that will lead them though mysticism, occultism and fear as they start to put all of the pieces together. They have a connection, but don’t understand why. Can they figure it all out without loosing each other, or themselves to the powers they don’t yet understand?

3:33 AM is an enthralling work of fiction that will travel through some serious twists and turns! As stated previously, there is some alternative medicine, mysticism, religious symbology and occultism intertwined in this tale. Hindmarsh has done a fantastic job pulling all elements together to keep the story briskly moving. I had a hard time putting it down because I had to know what happened next! I loved it! Check it out!

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Oblivious by Howard Carlyle

Scott Harper is in an abusive relationship….with his parents. The repeated patterns of abuse have force Scott to create an alter ego as his defense mechanism. His alter ego, Tommy, is manipulative and harbors hate and ill will toward anyone that tries to harm Scott.

Oblivious is the story of how Scott battles with his inner demon, Tommy. The more Scott gets stressed or under pressure, the more manipulative Tommy gets to be which always ends up getting Scott into trouble.

Carlyle paints us a picture of how abuse can start a chain of events that are almost impossible to come back from. I will not lie, some of the abuse scenes made me uncomfortable. But I grew to like Scott and was rooting for him throughout the book. Although this is a work of fiction, the actions and manipulation of Scott are grounded in facts. I can tell Carlyle did his research on Scott’s particular condition. This book shines a spotlight on Mental Health and “the system” that drives how those patients are cared for. It’s a tough read, but well with it!

Content Warning: this book contains some serious abuse and brutal kill scenes.

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Trench Mouth by Christine Morgan

Trench Mouth is underwater horror that is set in a tropical tourist destination. While celebrities and tourists visit the destination, they have no idea that an underwater base named Fathom 5 sits just offshore in one of the deepest parts of the ocean.

Fathom 5 houses some of the “cream of the crop” scientists and doctors who have built and discovered technology that could possibly make human civilization in the sea a reality. To test their theories, a group of super human test subjects have been recruited to see if the technology can help them evolve into what is necessary to survive in an under sea environment.

We have very little knowledge of the deep oceans and its horrific inhabitants. Myths and legends come alive within these pages. I love how Christine Morgan gives us glimpses into the sea creatures thoughts and feelings as they too become characters in the story!

If the trenches of the deep weren’t already scary enough, Christine Morgan takes it to a whole new frightening level! The anticipation and creepiness she builds works fantastic with this underwater setting. The story is told so well that it fuels the imagination to go wild. Gore, under pressure with teeth, oh my!

**Release date: June 15, 2021 from Madness Heart Press**

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Stillborn Gallery by Axl Barnes

Stillborn Gallery is a collection of short stories that depict characters dealing with depression, low self worth, pain and chronic illness. Each story also featured a unique piece of art at the end that I thought was really cool.

The stories are told from a Canadian point of view and I will be honest and say, I had a hard time understanding some of the phrasing and word usage. For those of you with queasy stomachs, be aware there are some gruesome scenes in these stories. If you love Splatterpunk, you will like this collection.

For me, the story that stuck out the most from this collection was “Natasha Suicide.” Natasha deals with her chronic illness in her own way. I understood this character well because I too suffer with a chronic illness.

This collection was an interesting read in character perspectives. It’s different, possibly due to the subject matter, than any book I’ve read this far. Check it out!

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Time Ripper by D.E. McCluskey

Time Ripper is a fantastic tale that cleverly winds past and present together. If you like science fiction, horror, and alternate history, you have to check this book out!

The setting is the near future. Rival teams work on a machine that will help them transcend time. Team A finds out someone from Team B has succeeded and gone back in time to wreak havoc on unassuming Londoners. Team A decides to send a group back through the rift to bring this person back to pay for their crimes. There’s only one catch, they still aren’t sure they can come back to their present time once they travel the rift.

The team travels to London at the beginning of the Jack the Ripper murders. McCluskey brilliantly finds ways to weave future technologies into historical settings. His cunning storytelling gives us an alternative history of what we think we all know about the Jack the Ripper murders.

I don’t want to give too much away so I will stop there, but I really liked this book! It is a fresh retelling of a turbulent time of world history that I think any reader will enjoy. Yes, there’s some gore peppered in there, but it works within the storyline. D.E. McCluskey has a winner with this one!

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Graymatter by Nicholas Gray

Graymatter is a collection of short stories that I really enjoyed. Gray did a fantastic job with his descriptors and made me feel as I was watching the stories unfold on film. I could see the horror and feel the tension in his characters as the stories progressed. My favorites were Highway to Hell, The Pale Man, and That Thing In The Ward.

This is my first read by Nicholas Gray. He definitely has a talent in storytelling and I look forward to reading more from him! Check out this awesome collection!

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The Witching House by Brian Moreland

The Witching House is the story of three people that like to go check out creepy places. Dean had heard about this house and decided to talk his friends, Meg and Casey into checking it out. He also decides to bring his current girlfriend on this excursion and she has no idea what she’s being dragged into…literally.

The group discovers the house is alive with evil intentions. As they explore the house, we get flashbacks of the story of the house and all that took place there years before. Some evil never dies. This group is about to find out what it wants and if they can make out before they too become part of the house’s history.

I really liked this story. It’s the first book by Brian Moreland that I have ever read. It was a fast read and kept me turning the pages to find out what happened next. Check it out!