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The Havoc Tree by Layden Robinson

The Havoc Tree is a fun, quirky set of stories that describe different situations of madness. In each tale, the characters have a choice and must suffer the consequences of that choice whether it be good or bad.

The stories are packed with colorful characters that get into some sticky situations. My favorite story in the book is The Suit. Robinson has written some wild stories that will take your imagination on an exquisite trip! Go check it out!

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Try Dying by Rajeev Singh

Try Dying is a story of a man named Aiden who wants to fulfill his carnal desires while watching a person be brought to the brink of death. It’s not something he can ask of just anyone…he has to find that perfect person. So he searches the Dark Web and finds videos featuring Nikita Cleaver that look too real to be fake. He decides he has to find her because she could be his perfect person.

Their meeting is not what Aiden expects. Nikita reveals to Aiden she has the unnatural ability to cheat death. Excitedly, he wants to push her to her final limits and she wants him to help her get there and end her life for real.

Singh weaves us a fantastic tale of horror, eroticism and an understood loyalty between the two main characters. This story can definitely be characterized as Splatterpunk and is full of blood and gore! I enjoyed reading about the escapades of Aiden and Nikita and I think you will too! Singh does not disappoint on this one!

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Halloween Land by Kevin J. Kennedy

Halloween Land is a fun tale that is a throwback to our childhood of old school pop-up traveling carnivals. Zak and Wendy are young kids who are best friends and share a lot of the same interests. They bond with horror movies and their favorite season, Halloween!

Halloween Land takes us back to the magical sights, sounds and scents of those days when we were innocent children without a care in the world, looking for an evening of fun. The whole town is excited about the coming of Halloween Town. But what they don’t realize is Halloween Town is open to all, but some will pay a hefty price; for it keeps what it needs so the carnival can thrive.

This novella is a super quick read. I read it in an evening and got sucked into it almost immediately. Kennedy did a fantastic job bringing back the excitement, fascination and fears every kid has on this thrill ride. Relive a piece of the magic and get your copy of Halloween Land today!

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Header by Edward Lee

I purchased this book a few years ago at KillerCon and just got around to reading it. I’ve read some seriously messed up stories from Edward Lee, but this one takes the cake!

Deep in the dark backwoods of rural America, rednecks and white trash go about their daily lives. They believe in God and take to heart the saying, “An eye for an eye.” When someone is wronged, they take justice into their own hands to right the wrong. It’s an unspoken justice and cops turn a blind eye because they know this has gone on for generations. But, one cop is determined to solve the string of “Header” murders that are going on right under his nose.

I got about halfway through the novella and had one of those “did I just really read that” moments. Yea…I did! Holy smokes! This story pushes past boundaries and may make the reader seriously uncomfortable. This is definitely not an angle I have ever read before. Lee gives us a unique view into his perplexing mind and shows us how he can go where others have never gone before. I was shocked and stunned at the same time as I read. Bravo Mr. Lee, Bravo! Looking forward to Header 2 that I also got at KillerCon that year! Oh and there’s a movie that was made from this book! Gotta check it out! Be ready to be aghast and bewildered when reading this novella. This is what Splatterpunk is all about!

Also, I kept looking at a collage of photos I have on my wall from Killercon 2018 of me with Ed Lee and other authors. He’s such a nice person to talk with and you would never know that the madness he writes came from such a nice man!!

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Poisoned Candy: Bite-sized Horror for Halloween

I never thought I could enjoy drabbles as much as I have until being introduced to the twisted and raucous minds of Pippa Bailey and Myk Pilgrim. These bite-sized horror books go so fast because of the multiple shorts. These two authors hold nothing back in vulgarity and always get their devious points across in 100 words or less.

I read this in its entirety while sitting at a doctor’s office waiting to be seen. It really reads that fast and keeps you wanting more! My favs were “Glory Hole,” “Free Porn,” “Witches” and “It Waits.” Check out this gloriously disgusting humor from two of horror’s best at drabbles!

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Buried Memories  by Kelli Owen

Kelli Owen has done it again with this novella!  She has a way of evoking deep feelings and emotions to those reading her stories. This time was no different and to me, it was powerful. This novella was originally marketed as one of a set of four novellas. Each are stand alone stories and are fantastic quick reads!

Ben Danski is a man that pretty much keeps to himself. He decided to undergo hypnotherapy sessions to help him quit smoking. The sessions are causing vivid dreams to enter his psyche and he’s not sure whether what he sees really happened or not. He must decide to continue down this dark path to see where it leads him or try another  therapy to quit smoking. 

I was quickly invested in this character and his story. I think you will be too! 

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Grave Wax by Kelli Owen

Kelli Owen gives us a beautifully haunting story in this novella. I read it in one sitting as the suspense grabbed me from the start and I had to finish it!

George and Rose share a life of ups and downs with one constant…they truly love each other. George will do anything to save his beloved wife. George is the town’s gravedigger and is asked by the local witch for some special ingredients that only he can obtain. Just how far will he go to ensure he can be with Rose for eternity?

February is the celebration of Women in Horror! Kelli Owen is one of the best of the genre! Grab your copy of Grave Wax and read it today!!

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Farewell to Dave Barnett

It’s a sad day in the Horror World to hear of Dave Barnett’s passing. This man has done so much for the horror community with his company Necro Publications. Dave helped put the stories of great Edward Lee and others in all of our hands! He was great to talk to. He will be missed. Travel well friend.

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The 2021 Splatterpunk Award Nominees are…congrats to all of the nominees!!

—For Immediate Release

February 17, 2021

Best-selling authors and Splatterpunk Award founders Wrath James White and Brian Keene are proud to announce the nominees for the 2021 Splatterpunk Awards, honoring superior achievement for works published in 2020 in the sub-genres of Splatterpunk and Extreme Horror.

The nominees are recommended by readers, fans and peers. The nominees are as follows.

BEST NOVEL

  1. Pandemonium by Ryan Harding and Lucas Mangum (Death’s Head Press)
  2. Tome by Ross Jeffery (The Writing Collective)
  3. Dust by Chris Miller (Death’s Head Press)
  4. Slaughter Box by Carver Pike (Self-Published)
  5. Gone To See The River Man by Kristopher Triana (Cemetery Dance Publications)
  6. They All Died Screaming by Kristopher Triana (Blood Bound Books)
  7. The Magpie Coffin by Wile E. Young (Death’s Head Press)

BEST NOVELLA

  1. The Slob by Aron Beauregard (Self-Published) *
  2. Bella’s Boys by Thomas R. Clark (Stitched Smile Publications)
  3. Juniper by Ross Jeffery (The Writing Collective)
  4. Red Station by Kenzie Jennings (Death’s Head Press)
  5. True Crime by Samantha Kolesnik (Grindhouse Press)
  6. The Night Silver River Run Red by Christine Morgan (Death’s Head Press)
  7. How Much 2 by Matt Shaw (Self-Published)

BEST SHORT STORY

  1. “The Incident at Barrow Farm” by M. Ennenbach (from Cerberus Rising, Self-Published)
  2. “Full Moon Shindig” by Patrick C. Harrison III (from Visceral: Collected Flesh, Death’s Head Press)
  3. “Phylum” by Tom Over (from The Comfort Zone and Other Safe Spaces, NihilismRevised)
  4. “Footsteps” by Janine Pipe (from Diabolica Britannica, Keith Anthony Baird)
  5. “Next In Line” by Susan Snyder (from Devour the Earth, Madness Heart Press)
  6. “My Body” by Wesley Southard (from Midnight In the Pentagram, Silver Shamrock Publishing)
  7. “The God In The Hills” by Jon Steffens (from The God In the Hills, Filthy Loot Press)

BEST COLLECTION

  1. War of Dictates by John Baltisberger (Death’s Head Press)
  2. Cerberus Rising by M. Ennenbach, Chris Miller and Patrick C. Harrison III (Self-Published) **
  3. The Essential Sick Stuff by Ronald Kelly (Silver Shamrock Publishing)
  4. Rhapsody In Red by Peter Molnar (Stitched Smile Publications)
  5. Visceral: Collected Flesh by Christine Morgan and Patrick C. Harrison III (Death’s Head Press) ***
  6. The Comfort Zone and Other Safe Spaces by Tom Over (NihilismRevised)
  7. Blood Relations by Kristopher Triana (Grindhouse Press)

BEST ANTHOLOGY

  1. Chew On This edited by Robert Essig (Blood Bound Books)
  2. Brewtality edited by K. Trap Jones (The Evil Cookie Publishing)
  3. Welcome To the Splatter Club edited by K. Trap Jones (Blood Bound Books)
  4. Worst Laid Plans edited by Samantha Kolesnik (Grindhouse Press)
  5. Crash Code edited by Quinn Parker (Blood Bound Books)
  6. If I Die Before I Wake Vol. 3: Tales of Deadly Women and Retribution edited by R.E. Sargent and Steven Pajak (Sinister Smile Press)
  7. Psi-Wars: Classified Cases of Psychic Phenomena edited by Joshua Viola (Hex Publishers)
  • Qualifies due to being significantly revised from its original edition.

** Qualifies as a collection, rather than an anthology.

*** Qualifies as a collection, rather than an anthology.

A panel of judges composed of professionals, critics and scholars in the field will now begin the process of reading each nominated work, and selecting a winner for each category. Winners will be announced at KillerCon, taking place in Austin, Texas this August. If national health concerns prevent a physical convention, then the winners will be announced in an online ceremony instead.

In addition to the winners, author and editor John Skipp will receive the annual J. F. Gonzalez Lifetime Achievement Award honoring his significant contributions to the sub-genres of Splatterpunk and Extreme Horror. Previous recipients are David J. Schow, David G. Barnett and Edward Lee.

Three notes of interest regarding this year’s awards:

While each category normally has five nominees (six if there is a tie), press will note that each category for this year contains seven. That is due to the overwhelming response in recommendations from the public this year. More new readers were engaged with Splatterpunk and Extreme Horror in 2020, leading to an increase in public response. As such, Wrath and Brian decided to extend the nominees to seven for each category, to better serve the community.

Building on a trend we pointed out in 2019, this year saw a continued significant increase in the number of women and authors who identify as female writing Splatterpunk and Extreme Horror. The recommendation process evidenced readers and fans mentioning a number of new female voices.

Splatter Westerns (which combine elements of Splatterpunk or Extreme Horror with the traditional Western genre) were clearly a favorite among readers in 2020, as evidenced both in the nominees and in the recommendations.

Press inquiries can be sent to Wrath James White or Brian Keene

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Gods of the Dark Web by Lucas Mangum

Lucas Mangum has successfully managed to take us to a place that’s so dark that I feel like I need a shower to reset from his horror imagined. This novella is full of suspense and takes the reader down a path that may be hard to come back from for some readers. Be warned, this is not a typical horror story. It goes much deeper. I really enjoyed this trip down the dark side.

We’ve all heard the stories about the Black Web. Basically anything you can think of can be found there whether it’s legal or not. Leon is a teenager who manages to get sucked into the allure of being able to express himself without boundaries. Little does he know, he’s been targeted and being tracked by unknown forces that seem to know everything about him. Can he get out? Will the Gods of the Dark Web show him mercy?