Erik Hofstatter – Amaranthine and Other Stories Review

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

The birthing tub is the first short and has all the makings of a heartbreaking story. Sean is devastated after the love of his life left him. Now life is an endless and monotonous routine, each day he struggles to survive, not really living, just existing. But wait! The title is the birthing tub and what is birthed is so foul I wished I hadn’t just eaten only moments before. Sean eats the same meal every day, chicken and rice, and always eats it before it is fully cooked. What happens next was shocking and unexpected and pretty gross. Sean now has a new friend to keep him company, I’ll let you think on that… The stories are short, fast paced and at the last possible moment take you by surprise. I loved the twists, and at times, the shocking turns that I had no chance to see coming. Erik Hofstatter uses many realistic everyday situations and makes them horrifying. The loss of memory, drowning in a pool, killing in the name of music, loosing your child. Using natures own biology to cause death, voodoo, and the art of using human skin to make books, what more can you ask for in a horror book!

Book Info

Length: 63 Pages

Release date: May 14, 2016

To Purchase Amaranthine and Other Stories Click Here

Amaranthine and Other Stories serves up nine schlock horror slices, sprinkled with quirk and humor.

Forget vampires. Forget werewolves. Forget ghosts. Humans are the ultimate grotesques. Variant flavours of woe sift through these pages. The results are sometimes hilarious, sometimes outright hair-raising!

As a bonus, the collection also includes story notes, offering the reader a rare glimpse into the inspiration behind each tale.

A compelling anthology of horror and dark fantasy short stories, Amaranthine is an impressive collection from one of the new promising British horror authors, Erik Hofstatter.

Scott Warren – Vick’s Vultures Review

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

It’s refreshing to find a book with as many or more female characters than male. It’s not only the quantity but the strength of the females characters that I enjoyed. Victoria, or Vick to her crew, is the captain of the Condor and they desperately need to find some valuable space salvage. Fuel and supplies are running low and the crew needs a good score. Her crew, the Vultures, are some of the best around and know what to look for. They pick up on a distress signal and hope the ship is worth investigating since the signal is only two days old. As they arrive at the ship they know it will have some great technology they can sell and get them the money they need.

The Dreadstar has been badly damaged and they find several Malagaths survivors onboard. They were on the run from a Dirregaunt cruiser and now the salvage mission has become a rescue mission. The Springdawn notices the Condor and now Vicks hopes they can slip away before their ship becomes the next victim. It turns out the Vultures found something more valuable than advanced technology onboard the Dreadstar. The commander of the ship is the First Prince of Malagath. Vick hopes this rescue will allow the humans to forge a much needed new ally and, if lucky, some new technology.

I enjoyed the power struggles that Scott Warren worked into the story. It seems that even in the world of space travel and multiple races everyone wants to be the top dog. There are interesting characters, both human and xeno that filled the story. The political complexities in the plot are well written and I love the multiple strong female characters, including the protagonist. We are also given a steady stream of action and interesting dynamics between the races. In the universe created by Scott Warren the human race is at the bottom of the technology ladder, which is an interesting juxtaposition since we like to think we are always at the top.

Book Info

Length: 226 Pages

Publisher: Parvus Press

Release date: October 4, 2016

To Purchase Vick’s Vultures Click Here

In the far future, alien technology captured by the Union Earth Privateers has fueled Earth’s tenuous expansion from a single planet to a handful of systems across the Orion Spur.

Victoria Marin, captain of the U.E. Condor, and her crew of Vultures have been running dry for months. In danger of losing her command and her credibility if she can’t locate fresh salvage, she locks onto the distress signal of an alien ship in hopes of valuable cargo. What she finds instead is First Prince Tavram, the heir apparent to one of the largest empires in known space. Tavram’s ship has been crippled after narrowly escaping an ambush and his would-be assassin is coming to finish the job.

The Vultures launch a high risk mission to rescue the prince and recover every last scrap of xenotech they can before the hunter catches up to his prey. But there are more dangers than notorious interstellar assassins when it comes to ferrying an alien prince across the stars, and Victoria must contend with dangerous alliances, old grudges, and even her own government if she means to bring her crew home alive. Whether she succeeds or fails, the consequences of her choices will affect the path of all humanity.

Scott Warren, biography

Scott Warren is 26, and lives in Central Oregon where he splits his time between writing, aviation, and art. One of his dreams was to someday write a novel and illustrate the cover, and he has accomplished this with the release of his debut novel, The Sorcerous Crimes Division: Devilbone. He writes as a hobby, favoring self-publishing and never having expected such a positive reaction to his work. A small, but growing number of readers offers constant encouragement.

“I just sat down one day and said, ‘There’s no reason I shouldn’t have already written a novel’. That’s really all it took. That, and being too stubborn to quit. I started writing from 11 PM to midnight every night, and whenever else I had time, and in three months I had a rough draft. It was another year before I was confident in self-publishing my work, and despite the roughness of my novel work the reception has been amazing. I’ve been reading voraciously all my life, and my hope is that my favorite authors, Erikson, Pratchet, Gaiman, Jordan, Scalzi, and others will have a deep influence on my work while I explore my own style and stories.”

Teresa Hawk – The Zen of Horror Review

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

I’ve read Teresa Hawk’s books and love the humor I find in her horror stories. I had no idea what The Zen of Horror was about before I opened it up. Was I going to find a healthy dose of humor mixed with horror as I had before? The Zen of Horror isn’t your typical book, it is filled with thoughts, nuggets and excellent phrases that would fit nicely in a horror story or as a stand alone idea. The concept of so many bits of related horror expressions brought together is entertaining. This is the kind of book you can flip to a random page and get your daily inspiration of horror.

The Zen of Horror is filled with thoughts that are deep and cause you to pause, take a step back and say, oh crap. It is filled with concepts to think about, absorb and hold on to when you are in need of a reminder of why you love the genre. Anyone who loves horror and has been a fan of the genre will find what lies inside the pages fun to revisit. The Zen of Horror also contains some excellent quotes from classic horror movie and books, this was a great little surprise and a fun reminder from where they originated.

This book could be enjoyed like a page a day calendar with a fun little doses of horror for each day. We get reminders of what it is that defines horror and how we envision it to be or how others see it. The reader is given questions to make us think about what we fear and why. Thanks for the journey through your horror landscape, Teresa!

Book Info

Length: 378 Pages

Release date: September 15, 2014

To Purchase The Zen of Horror Click Here

The Zen of Horror fuses your favorite horror villains, monsters and themes with the philosophy of Zen Buddhism, giving rise to a whole new beast. One nihilistic and challenging koan awaits on each page of this dreadful collection. Inspire your creativity. Tap into your dark and twisted potential. Discover the simple beauty of silencing your wretched mind. Delightfully creepy, The Zen of Horror offers a surreal perspective unlike any other.