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Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Crabian Heart by Erik Hofstatter [4 stars]




From the Description
 
Irena and her thirteen-year-old son Aleš are refugees living in a lonely seaside town of Dover, England. Aleš has never seen an ocean, let alone one that glows purple when he’s nearby. On a local beach, he befriends the ostensible Mother of Crabs, an amputee with rigid demeanour and unequivocal warnings. Soon, purple crustaceans crawl behind his every step and women with pincers threaten to recondition his sensitive heart.

Erik Hofstatter is a dark fiction writer and a member of the Horror Writers Association. Born in the wild lands of the Czech Republic, he roamed Europe before subsequently settling on English shores, studying creative writing at the London School of Journalism. He now dwells in Kent, where he can be encountered consuming copious amounts of mead and tyrannizing local peasantry. His work appeared in various magazines and podcasts around the world such as Morpheus Tales, Crystal Lake Publishing, The Literary Hatchet, Sanitarium Magazine, Wicked Library, Tales to Terrify and Manor House Show. Other works include The Pariahs, Amaranthine and Other Stories, Katerina, Moribund Tales and Rare Breeds.
 
Publication Date: November 12, 2017
Publisher: Parallel Universe Publications
Publication Length: 100 pages
 
I received a copy of this book from the author for review consideration. This is in no way reflected in my opinion of this novella. I did not receive any form of compensation for my review.
 
The Crabian Heart is a creepy little tale of a boy finding his first love only to discover that she’s not quite who or what she seems to be. Aleš is a thirteen year old boy who comes to Dover with his mother. You can feel Aleš loneliness as he struggles to find his place in this strange new town. Then he meets Enola, a young girl who steals his heart. He is surrounded by characters that are slightly odd and menacing, purple crabs that swarm and follow him, giving this tale an aura of danger and uncertainty that keeps you on edge. I thoroughly enjoyed the creeping sense of dread that permeates the melancholy atmosphere of this novella. A solid 4 star read.
 
Buy the Book
 
 
About the Author
 
 
 
 

Erik Hofstatter is a schlock horror writer and a member of the Horror Writers Association. Born in the wild lands of the Czech Republic, he roamed Europe before subsequently settling on English shores, studying creative writing at the London School of Journalism. He now dwells in Kent, where he can be encountered consuming copious amounts of mead and tyrannizing local peasantry. His work appeared in various magazines and podcasts around the world such as Morpheus Tales, Crystal Lake Publishing, The Literary Hatchet, Sanitarium Magazine, Wicked Library, Tales to Terrify and Manor House Show. Other works include The Pariahs, Amaranthine and Other Stories, Katerina, Moribund Tales and Rare Breeds.
 
You can find him at erikhofstatter.net or follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and GoodReads
 
 
Praise
 
"Like Stephen King and Clive Barker, Hofstatter has a voice that is distinctive and highly engaging, and, like those maestros, is certain to become a major writer in the world of horror." ~ Starburst Magazine
 
 

"Erik Hofstatter certainly shows talent." ~ Scream Horror Magazine
 
 
"Hofstatter is that rare type of genre writer who’s willing to take a risk, a trait that works in his and his readers favor." ~ Shotgun Logic
 
 
"Hofstatter continues to impress with stories that pull no punches, and travel to some genuinely dark places." ~The Eloquent Page
 
 
"An audacious exercise in schlock-horror, gleefully twisted." ~ Gary McMahon, author of The Concrete Grove Trilogy
 
"Erik writes the kind of old school horror fiction that is rarely seen these days, making him a rare breed himself." ~ Paul Kane, author of The Rainbow Man
 
"This tale of mounting dread and unusual horror creeps in like a night fog and wraps itself around your throat, and when its icy tendrils recede, what is left behind will shock you." ~ Mary SanGiovanni, author of The Hollower Trilogy


Thursday, February 8, 2018

The Nightmare Room by Chris Sorensen [5 stars]




From the Description
 
A boy in a basement, a man in a booth and a darkness that threatens to swallow them both...

New York audiobook narrator Peter Larson and his wife Hannah head to his hometown of Maple City to help Peter's ailing father and to put a recent tragedy behind them. Though the small, Midwestern town seems the idyllic place to start afresh, Peter and Hannah will soon learn that evil currents flow beneath its surface.

They move into an old farmhouse on the outskirts of town—a house purchased by Peter's father at auction and kept secret until now—and start to settle into their new life.

But as Peter sets up his recording studio in a small basement room, disturbing things begin to occur—mysterious voices haunt audio tracks, malevolent shadows creep about the house. And when an insidious presence emerges from the woodwork, Peter must face old demons in order to save his family and himself.
 
Publication Date: January 23, 2018
Publisher: Harmful Monkey Press
Publication Length: 274 pages
 
I received a copy of this book from the author for review consideration. This is in no way reflected in my opinion of this novel. I did not receive any form of compensation for my review.
 
The Nightmare Room is one creepy little gem! This fast paced ghost story will have you hanging on every word as you try to solve the mystery surrounding the eerie old house. Peter and Hannah are both believable and likeable characters thrown into a nightmare inducing situation. Chris Sorenson has created a haunting that was terrifying without being clichéd interspaced with moments of levity and sorrow and enough twist to keep you guessing until the horrifying end. This novel had me looking up to make sure that nothing was lurking in the shadows and dying for more when I turned the final page. I highly recommend this fantastic 5 star read!
 
 
Buy the Book
 
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About the Author
 
 

Chris Sorensen spends many days and nights locked away inside his own nightmare room. He is the narrator of over 200 audiobooks (including the award-winning The Missing series by Margaret Peterson Haddix) and the recipient of three AudioFile Earphone Awards. Over the past fifteen years, the Butte Theater and Thin Air Theatre Company in Cripple Creek, Colorado have produced dozens of his plays including Dr. Jekyll’s Medicine Show, Werewolves of Poverty Gulch and The Vampire of Cripple Creek. He is the author of the middle grade book The Mad Scientists of New Jersey and has written numerous screenplay including Suckerville, Bee Tornado and The Roswell Project.
 
You can follow Chris on his WEBSITE, Facebook, Twitter, and GoodReads
 
 

Praise for The Nightmare Room
 
"This is one haunted house that had me running for the door! Blood frozen. Spine chilled. A must read." - Hunter Shea, author of We Are Always Watching and The Jersey Devil


"Chilling one moment, terrifying the next, The Nightmare Room will have you shopping for a nightlight." - Nick Sullivan, author of Zombie Bigfoot


"The Nightmare Room pulled me in right from the start with believable characters and a central mystery that forced me to keep reading to learn more. Prepare for all night reading once it enters its second act and then prepare to stay up all night hearing the sounds in your own house! A real delight for horror fans!" - Kendal Sinn, screenwriter of Nailbiter, Shadow Falls Memorial