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Dylan J. Morgan – The Dead City Review

Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

The Dead City by Dylan Morgan is an exciting continuation of book one, The Dead Lands. It is now four weeks after the initial team entered the Presidential bunker on Hemera. Their mission was to rescue the President after the nuclear war. Now a new army from Erebus consisting of four hundred men and women has arrived. Lieutenant Marshal, along with Ryan, Jayde and the rest of alpha squadron are here to secure the building. They are to retrieve the riches rumored to be hidden in the Presidential bunker. Colonel Paden needs the gold and jewels to fund his army back home and returning empty-handed isn’t an option for him. The city is a disaster and filled with mutants which were created as a result of the nuclear war. In addition the surrounding cities are filled with bandits making this operation even more dangerous.

Dylan Morgan gives us a strong female protagonist, Jayde. She holds her own quite well and doesn’t let the sideways looks and comments of her male counter parts get the best of her. We also have Colonel Paden, who is a piece of work and a great antagonist. He only cares about what he can gain from this mission and has little concern about the welfare of his men and women. The Dead City is a constant battle with crazy mutants and there is no shortage of action. The futuristic weapon technology fits very well within this scifi world created by Dylan Morgan. There are double crosses and backstabbing between the colonel and his lieutenants which had me cheering that the bad apples would be removed from the equation. The action is nonstop, right to the end, as everyone realizes the mission has gone south. The ending left me wanting more and I hope there will be a third installment to the story.

Book Info

Length:  310 Pages

Publisher:  DJM Entertainment

Release date:  August 31, 2016

To Purchase The Dead City Click Here

Nuclear war devastated the planet of Hemera and shattered its main city, Magna. A century later, its sister planet, Erebus, despatched a team of soldiers to the city to rescue Hemera’s president and restore that world to its former glory. What the reconnaissance team found however was a violent mutated population—all they discovered there was death. Now, four weeks after the final mayday call from her decimated soldiers, Erebus has sent a larger force to Hemera’s surface. Colonel Paden is coming with them, but his desires go way beyond the rescue of the surviving recon team. A mountain of jewels and gold is rumoured to lie buried beneath the presidential palace, and Paden is here to claim the wealth he believes is due to him.

Dropped into an unforgiving world, Ryan and the other soldiers of Erebus Superior Armed Forces soon discover everything is not as they thought. Magna’s population is more deadly than they could ever have imagined, their Colonel more corrupt than they’d ever known. Seeking refuge in the president’s underground bunker, the combatants are forced to sacrifice everything just to stay alive.

Bandit clans control Hemera’s dead lands and they’ve surrounded Magna in an effort to claim the fortune that belongs to their planet. Mutants control the city streets, but all they want is the taste of human flesh. Trapped inside the dead city, Ryan must fight against a mutated population—against the greed, betrayal, and hatred of those who stand at his side—in a desperate battle for survival.

Dylan J. Morgan, Biography-

Now living and working in Norway, Dylan J. Morgan was born in New Zealand and raised in the United Kingdom. He writes during those rare quiet moments amid a hectic family life: after dark, with limited sustenance, and when his creative essence is plagued the most by tormented visions.

A member of the Horror Writers Association, he has published 8 books, all available on Amazon.

Maria Dahvana Headley – Magonia Review

Magonia is about a teenage girl named Aza who has a lung disease. Aza is about to turn sixteen years old and was told she wouldn’t live this long. She has a rare, one in a million, disease that affects her ability to breathe. She is fairly grown up about it and deals with it far better than I think most teens would. She has had her breathing issue for her entire life and she hopes a cure will be found in time. On day in class Aza is daydreaming, and sees a ship in the clouds. Aza’s best and lifelong friend Jason tells her she is having a hallucination. He tells her a story from ancient history about people who claim they fell from a ship in the sky called Magonia.

Aza is a character that has great self-awareness about her medical condition.  Her attitude is a bit flippant but I enjoyed that she doesn’t take life too seriously and let it get her down. I really enjoyed the first third of the book along with the very real way the author approaches Aza’s impending death. The author writes with what feels like first-hand knowledge about losing someone very close. It is packed with emotion and heart-felt. I thought the relationship between Aza and her best friend Jason was really well done. They had the kind of friendship you don’t see often. He is the only one who isn’t afraid to speak on the topic of her death.

The history of Magonia and the ships in the sky was interesting. It felt like I was learning some secret part of history believed by an ancient civilization. The relationships between Aza and her family and Jason were really well done. I was really invested in the characters until… well no spoilers here. Without giving away too much of the story, Aza’s time on the ship was where I checked out on the book. The relationship with her ‘Mother’ on the ship in the clouds never worked for me. In addition her relationship with the other crew on the ship felt awkward and didn’t work for me either. I lost interest in the story pretty quickly. The last two-thirds of the book was a strange mix of fantasy and fairy tale along with something else I can’t put my finger on. I’m not sure if I missed the boat, no pun intended, or if this book was just too out there for me.

Book Info

Length:  325 Pages

Publisher:  Harper Collins

Release date:  April 28, 2015

To Purchase Magonia Click Here

Maria Dahvana Headley’s soaring YA debut is a fiercely intelligent, multilayered fantasy where Neil Gaiman’s Stardust meets John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars in a story about a girl caught between two worlds . . . two races . . . and two destinies.

Aza Ray Boyle is drowning in thin air. Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live. So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn’t think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.

Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.

Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—but as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war between Magonia and Earth is coming. In Aza’s hands lies fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?

Adam Howe – Black Cat Mojo Review

Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

In Black Cat Mojo we get a number of funny and sideways novellas to entertain us, the first is Porn Dwarfs. The protagonist, Rummy, is a little person, dwarf, or midget, pick your favorite offensive term, you’ll see him called them all. Rum loves to bet, too much for his own good. He just lost another bet and owes his bookie, Scanlon, fifteen large. Back in the day Rum was a porn star and Scanlon has a plan to put his talent to good use. I couldn’t even imagine what kind of crazy was about to hit the fan. Adam Howe throws so many curve balls it had I my laughing and shaking my head at the shenanigans that Rum found himself wrapped up in.

Jesus in a dog’s ass is the second short story, and what a title this is. Holy crap, I knew I was in for another crazy adventure before I read a single page. A recently out of work man by the name of Hank gets the bright idea to buy a video camera to make some homemade porn. He practices his filming skills on his dog before getting down to business with his wife. While reviewing his footage his wife says she sees an image of Jesus on the dog’s backside, yea there. All isn’t roses and rainbows for Hank or the dog as everything goes south in a hot minute. This is more of Adam Howe’s classic humor at work.

Frank, the snake & the snake rounds out Black Cat Mojo with mobsters, witness protection and an over eager kid, which all spell trouble for Frank. He is living a sad existence as a grease monkey and a snot nosed kid wants him to act as his muscle. Frank is blackmailed into the life he is trying to forget. Too bad for Frank some people can’t let sleeping dogs lie. I’ll summarize it this way, bad news for that guy!

Black Cat Mojo is full of lewd and foul language, expletives, and even a few excellent terms only found on urban dictionary. All this is combined with language as far from ‘pc’ as you can get. This is the kind of writing that some would find excessive or over the top. To me it’s nothing short of great and makes me laugh. I enjoy the hell out of Adam Howe’s sense of humor, as twisted as it is. Anything goes when you enter one of Adam Howe’s books. The characters have the worse luck imaginable, hell I thought mine was bad. If you are easily offended this isn’t for you. For me it is fun and each story will scratch an itch for something not found in many books. Adam Howe seems to have an endless talent for creating characters. They each have their own unique mannerisms and distinct characteristics. I get a kick out of Adam Howe books, plain and simple.

Book Info

Length:  209 Pages

Publisher:  Comet Press

Release date:  March 16, 2015

To Purchase Black Cat Mojo Click Here

In these three novellas of blackly comic crime and creature horror, you’ll go slumming with well-endowed dwarf porn stars, killer badgers, redneck mama’s boys, morbidly obese nymphomaniacs, dumbass dog-nappers, trailer trash Jesus freaks, diarrheic Jack Russell Terriers, not-so-wiseguys, mob-movie memorabilia collectors, junkie blackmailers, and giant man-eating Burmese pythons.

OF BADGERS & PORN DWARFS
To pay back a gambling debt and avoid being castrated, washed-up dwarf porn star Rummy Rumsfeld (of Snow White spoof Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, It’s Up Your Ass We Go) must overcome a geriatric pederast, redneck pornographers, a morbidly obese nymphomaniac with serious personal hygiene issues, the ghost of his religious zealot mother, a dwarf-eating badger, and George Lucas.

JESUS IN A DOG’S ASS
Dumbass desperadoes Hootie and Poke incur the wrath of a trailer trash church group, not to mention God, when they kidnap a Jack Russell Terrier with the figure of Jesus Christ in its butt.

FRANK, THE SNAKE, & THE SNAKE
After testifying against notorious mob boss “Snake” Cobretti, embittered ex-wiseguy Frankie “The Tin Man” Piscopo emerges from Witness Protection to embark on a disastrous drug deal that leaves him fighting for his life against a giant Burmese python with a taste for Italian-American.

Adam Howe, Biography-

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 ShowdownOne Tough Bastard, and a crime/horror collaboration with Adam Tribesmen Cesare.

Find him on Twitter at @Adam_G_Howe.

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