Thursday, July 8, 2010

New Reviews

Most of these are available now from the sources listed. THE CALLED is available for pre-order and should be ready soon.

ISLAND LIFE, Willie Miekel, www.GhostwriterPublications.com, $1.99 ebook, 261 pages, ISBN: 9781907190018, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

Sometimes we think technology has gone too far and other times we wonder why it’s still ages behind what we expect. With the advent of e-publishing, writers are able to rescue their out of print works and make them available to a new group of readers at a low cost. This will allow them to discover a new audience without either of them having to invest a lot of cash into the process. In this economy, it’s a win/win situation.

ISLAND LIFE is pleasing tale that starts off well and then descends into a horror tale as the students working on a dig descend into their find. Off the Scottish coast lies the Outer Hebridean Islands and it is here that Duncan McKenzie is seeking the reason the fish are becoming scarce; a group of student are excavating a burial mound; and, one of the old timers has a feeling of dread.

Duncan is developing an interest in Meg McTaggart, daughter of Anne and Jim who run the pub and post office. Anne and Jim are the only remains of a hippie colony that remained on the austere island. Tom and Dick are the lighthouse keepers and John Jeffries is the farmer who thinks the students are the cause of his sheep mutilations.

The problem arises when the students open the mound and release Calent and his followers – a group of barbarian cannibals that have been sealed underground for almost 5000 years. Calent is a follower of “The Father” and has been around since he caused the destruction of Atlantii.

There is plenty of action as the islanders seek to defeat Calent and resume their “normal” lives. The body count rises as the action moves along with a surprise or two thrown in. Many thanks to Miekle for getting this available again, it’s available on Amazon or www.smashword.com.

THE INNSWICH HORROR, Edward Lee, Cemetery Dance, 190 pages, out of print, limited to approximately 700 copies, mentioned by Barry Hunter.

This is an odd review. The book is already sold out and it will not add any money to the coffers of the publisher or the writer, but it is a very interesting and enjoyable book. Hopefully, it will get picked up for a paperback edition (are you listening Leisure?).

Lee has entered Lovecraft territory with this one and has made himself at home with it. Foster Morley is on a tour of northern Massachusetts when he discovers the town of Innswich Point. It’s not on the map and he wonders if this might be the origin of Lovecraft’s Innsmouth. As he searches to find out the secret that lies under the wharf and how much Lovecraft incorporated into his work, he finds more horror than he can bear.

Lee makes an interesting tale of Marley’s adventure and makes a home for himself in the Mythos Canon. He leaves me wanting more about this quaint town and Lovecraft’s adventures there.

TAXPAYERS’ TEA PARTY, How to Become Politically Active – and Why, Sharon Cooper and Chuck Asay, Baen, $12.00, 192 pages, ISBN: 9781439133637, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

Like it or not, these are political times and a lot of people are concerned with the way this country is headed. This is a revised edition of a 1994 release with updates to bring in the politically super charged atmosphere we have today.

Chuck Asay is a political cartoonist and the first part of the book uses his talent to put across a lot of points in a fun but serious way.

Sharon Cooper then makes her points and has plenty of suggestions on how to get on “The Road to Rebellion”. It is chock full of examples and resources so that you can make your voice heard. There are addresses for the major networks, commentators, and a list of all the current members of the House of Representatives and Senate which includes phone, fax and email addresses.

Even if you don’t agree with what the Tea Party stands for, this is a good book to use for reference and will make you more informed. Who knows, you may find yourself agreeing with them after you finish the book.

ONE FOR THE ROAD, Stephen King, Illustrated by James Hannah, PS Publishing, $120 – 500 copy edition, $280 -100 copy edition signed by James Hannah, 44 pages, ISBN: 9781848630536, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

This is one of the more unusual books in the varied career of Stephen King. This is a picture book of one of King’s short stories about the town of Jerusalem’s Lot and a stormy night in Maine.

Booth and Herb Tooklander are about to close down Tookey’s Bar, when Gerarld Lumley stumbles in after walking six miles in a blizzard to get help for his stalled car and his wife and daughter he left there.

Lumley was lost and took the road to Jerusalem’s Lot and got stuck in a snowdrift. He convinces the two men to go help him rescue his family, even though they know it is probably useless.

The story fills in their journey and the things they find when they arrive at the stalled car. It is typical King and makes for an interesting book. It’s a good story and an unusual book to add to your collection.

THE CALLED, Warren Rochelle, Golden Gryphon, $24.95, 367 pages, ISBN: 9781930846630, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

Rochelle has written an interesting tale that starts with the closing of the gateway between the worlds of the humans and the faerie. When the door was closed, there were many changelings and now there is trouble brewing on Earth. The events depicted here lead up to the events of December 2012 and Rochelle has written an exciting and action packed novel.

Malachi and Hazel are half faerie and half of the tetrad with Russell and Jeff. Malachi and Hazel returned to Earth to help those left behind on Earth while Russell and Jeff remain in the White City. There are rumblings of problems that will affect not only the changelings, but the human race as well.

Magon, one of the Fomorii – enemy of the faerie, has come to earth and formed an alliance with radical religious extremists to destroy the changelings and anyone who gets in their way. President Gore’s government is overthrown and the extremists start their campaign to rid the world of their enemies.

Rochelle keeps his story set in North Carolina where Malachi has been kidnapped and Russell, Jeff and Hazel have joined forces with the Cherokee to rescue Malachi and prepare the world for what is to come in December.

There is plenty of action, personal and political backstabbing as no one knows who to trust. Rochelle ties in Cherokee and faerie myth along with the lost Roanoke Colony. This is a well written tale that has a cast of interesting characters and some unusual ideas about what to expect when the Mayan Calendar ends.

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