Sunday, August 8, 2010

Another award!

There's another award going around which I've been given by Brandon Sites at Dollar Bin Horror, Venoms5 at Cool Ass Cinema and Petunia Scareum at Deadly Serious. Thanks so much! Now I'm supposed to list 10 things that make me happy and 10 bloggers to pass the award onto.

10 Things That Make Me Happy

1. My cat, Betty
2. Bubble baths
3. Junk food
4. Horror movies and books (obviously)
5. Thrift stores and yard sales
6. Trips to the library
7. Reading
8. Seeing a band I love in concert
9. Vegging out in front of the TV
10. Sleeping in and spending the day in my PJ's

10 Terrific Blogs

1. Too Much Horror Fiction
2. Paperback Horror
3. The Doctor Is In...
4. Dead in the South
5. Midnite Media
6. The Girl Who Loves Horror
7. The Scream Queen
8. Bad Ronald
9. The Spooky Vegan
10. Stoned Horror Critic

Saturday, August 7, 2010

BOOK NEWS: Dorchester Publishing no longer producing mass market paperbacks

It seems that e-readers are doing to books what MP3s did to CDs years ago.

In September 2010, Dorchester Publishing, the publisher of Leisure horror books, will cease publication of mass market paperbacks, replacing them with e-books and print-on-demand trade paperback copies.

I've been a subscriber to the Leisure Horror Book Club for a couple of years now and I'm pretty upset about these changes. First of all, I'm not fond of trade paperbacks. They're more expensive (Leisure has already stated they'll cost $15.00 vs. the $7.99 they cost now), too big to fit in my purse (I always carry a paperback with me) and won't fit on my horror bookshelves, which consist of mostly paperbacks.

Secondly, I don't have an e-reader yet. I was planning on asking for an e-reader for my birthday or Christmas this year, but I don't know how much I will like it. Sure, it has advantages like being able to carry hundreds of books with you, being able to buy and read books instantly without leaving your house, cheaper books (sometimes), saving paper and being more lightweight than most books, but it also has some disadvantages.

First of all, how long do they last? I drop books all the time, splash water on them and they get pretty beat up in my purse. I don't know how long an e-reader could sustain through all the punishment I give to my paperbacks. Secondly, owning an e-book isn't the same as owning a real book. I won't be able to display my books on a shelf with the rest of my horror collection and it will feel like I don't really own them. Thirdly, grabbing a book and reading it is so simple. It doesn't need to be needlessly complicated by having to charge your e-reader or load books onto it.

I don't think that an e-reader could ever replace the feel of a book in a reader's hands. But I guess I shouldn't say that until I try one.

What are your opinions on e-readers? Are my complaints valid? Or are e-readers just as good as reading a regular book?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Images of Werewolf Transformations

Christine from Fascination With Fear tagged me in a meme where "bloggers are urged to come up with a series of screen grabs, all focusing on a specific theme."

The theme I chose is werewolf transformations. I find the moment where the human morphs into a werewolf to be unsettling because it shows a normal person becoming a beast. So here are images of people changing into werewolves.

 The Wolf Man (1941)

 The Wolfman (2010)

 The Howling (1981)

 The Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf (1985)

 The Howling III: The Marsupials (1987)

 The Howling IV: The Original Nightmare (1988)

 The Company of Wolves (1984)

 Trick 'r Treat (2008)

 An American Werewolf in London (1981)

 An American Werewolf in Paris (1997)

 The Monster Squad (1987)

 Cursed (2005)

 Teen Wolf (1985)

 Wolf (1994)

 Bad Moon (1996)

 Ginger Snaps 2: Unleashed (2004)

 Dog Soldiers (2002)

 Silver Bullet (1985)

 Waxwork (1988)

So now I have to tag five other bloggers. Here they are:

Monday, August 2, 2010

BOOK REVIEW: Pressure by Jeff Strand

When I bought Dweller by Jeff Strand, I also got his first paperback published by Leisure Books, Pressure. I'm glad I did because after reading the amazing Dweller, I wanted to read another Strand novel asap.

Pressure didn't disappoint and was just as engrossing and entertaining as Dweller. It was nominated for Best Novel in the 2006 Bram Stoker Awards, but lost to Lisey's Story by Stephen King.

Kids are often confronted with peer pressure to try "immoral" things like drugs, alcohol or sex. But what if your friend was interested in something a bit more dangerous and depraved? ...Like torturing and murdering a person together?

That's what Alex's demented friend, Darren,wants them to do together. When they first meet at boarding school as kids, Darren is a quiet roommate who doesn't say much to the other boys. But he reveals his true nature to Alex and they part on not-so-great terms. They meet again in college and Darren acts as if they're old pals. Eventually Alex forgives him for the horrors he put him through in boarding school - they were just kids after all. Unfortunately, Darren hasn't changed a bit and wants Alex to take part in his gory hobby.

Pressure is known as Strand's first serious novel, but he still manages to inject some humor into the story. Not as much as with Dweller, as the subject matter in this novel is pretty dark, but I still got a few chuckles from it.

The characters Alex and Darren are well-developed. Alex is the relatable, average guy that you end up caring immensely about and easily empathize with. Darren is a charismatic, intelligent psychopath comparable to a villain like Norman Bates or Hannibal Lecter.

The story is suspenseful and tense, keeping the reader on edge with its fast pace and brutal gore scenes.

Pressure is a disturbing read that will make you think twice about who you trust and I highly recommend it. But I still liked Dweller a little more, so I'm giving Pressure a 4 rating. Check out Dweller too, neither of them will disappoint.

Rating: 4/5

Check out this hilarious video where Jeff Strand explains how Pressure can help serial killers.

BOOK NEWS: Necon E-Books

Necon E-Books is a new horror e-book publisher that will be republishing out-of-print horror novels in e-book format. All e-books will feature new artwork and introductions.

Each e-book costs $5.99, or you have the option of joining The Necon Classic Horror Book Club, where you will receive a 20% discount. Once you join, you'll be committed to the club for one year and you'll only pay a total of $115 for 24 e-books.

The first two books released are Winter Wake by Rick Hautala and The Black Castle by Les Daniels (pictured below).

The September titles will be Phantom by Thomas Tessier and The Kill by Alan Ryan.

Other upcoming books include The Face That Must Die and Cold Print by Ramsey Campbell; The Piercing, The Searing and Hobgoblin by John Coyne; In Silence Sealed by Kathryn Ptacek; Welcome Back to the Night and The Fear Report by Elizabeth Massie.

They have over 40 authors contracted, including Charles L. Grant and Craig Shaw Gardner.

More Book/DVD Buys

Yesterday, I went to a used bookstore in Barrie and bought 10 books for $20. Here's what I got:

Shadoweyes by Kathryn Ptacek
Blood Autumn by Kathryn Ptacek
Dreamland by Garfield Reeves-Stevens
Slugs by Shaun Hutson
Anthony Shriek by Jessica Amanda Salmonson
Deathbell by Guy N. Smith
Watchdog by Faith Sullivan
The Howling III by Gary Brandner
Carrion by Gary Brandner
The Surrogate by Nick Sharman

And then I went to the 400 Market, which is like a flea market, and got two DVD sets for $5 each :

Toxie's Triple Terror Vol. 2: Beyond Evil, Chillers and Evil Clutch
Toxie's Triple Terror Vol. 7: Mommy's Epitaph, Play Dead and Death by Dialogue

Has anyone read/seen any of these? If so, what did you think?