Short Story Collection

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Writer Wednesday: Hellscapes Review

Published July 23, 2014 by administrator

Mornin’ kids… I’m on a roll!

So y’all know I like to read. A lot. And then I like to talk about what I read so other people can read it too. Today’s post is all about something I read. My good friend, Stephen Zimmer, published a collection of short horror stories last year entitled Hellscapes. (By the way, he totally doesn’t know I’m doing this, so his reaction will be big fun!) When it went on sale earlier this year, I snapped up my copy, and over the last few months I’ve been reading the stories one at a time.

One at a time is good for this collection. Trust me. More than one will give you nightmares.

 


 

 

First, let’s talk about the book:

Hellscapes by Stephen Zimmer

Release Date: September 3, 2013
Publisher: Seventh Star Press
Cover Artist: Matt Perry

Journey into realms of darkness and explore the regions where angels fear to tread! Welcome to the Hellscapes, featuring tales of the infernal in settings where the horror never ends and the inhabitants experience the ultimate nightmare.

In “Blood Dreams” follow the tale of a woman who knew great political authority and influence in life, as she discovers the reward awaiting her in the next world.

“The Grove” welcomes a new arrival, a wealthy man who is looking forward to a weekend of indulging in lust and libation, as he has for many years in this secluded convocation for the elite. Something is different this time, though, and he soon finds that his visit will be taking a very different turn.

In “The Smallest Fish”, the story is told of a ruthless business mogul who finds himself in an abandoned, ruined version of the city he knew well, in life. This city won’t be remaining vacant for long.

“Drowning in Tears” tells the story of a young man’s unhealthy obsession for a suicidal girlfriend that leads him on a path of severe transformation.

The final tale of Volume 1, “Lords of War”, follows the story of a man who wielded military power on a worldwide scale as a Secretary of Defense, who now learns the deeper nature of war and what kinds of monstrosities it breeds.

Hellscapes, Volume 1 is the first release in an exciting new themed horror collection from Stephen Zimmer.

BUY IT:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |iBookstore


And now…my thoughts.

In a word: TWISTED. This book is dark, kids. It’s creepy, it’s scary, and it’s deeply poignant. Psychological and situational horror combine to bring you a brand new set of nightmares. Just as the title promises, each story is a glimpse into the personal Hell of its main character. There’s chaos and destruction, debauchery, and even a little bit of a sad love story. Human emotions are powerful things, as is evidenced in every story in this collection.

If I had to pick a favorite, I think it would have to be The Grove. I knew what was happening long before the main character did, but that just made the anticipation even sweeter. A close second would have to be Drowning in Tears. It’s a horrifically beautiful display of obsession. To be honest, there isn’t a bad story in the bunch. They’re all good, all frightening, and all perfectly executed.

The reason I said reading them one at a time is wise is because they truly are frightening.  More than one is almost guaranteed to induce nightmares in even the strongest of minds.

Overall, an excellent display of literary terror.

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Where Are They Now: Toy Davis

Published August 5, 2013 by administrator

Mornin’, Creeps. We’re back for another round of Where Are They Now, sponsored by the now defunct No Boundaries Press. Today’s victim guest is the lovely Toy Davis, here to tell us a little bit about where she has been and where she’s going.

*****

From the Mouth of Toy:

“Since I left NBP I was picked up by Nevermore Press. one if the co-owners was an editor for NBP, and worked on my book. Since she knew my work she happily welcomed me into their family, which was good because I was crushed when NBP closed. included is the book information of my first release with Nevermore Press :)”

Author Toy DavisAbout Toy

Toy Davis has always used writing as an escape from the boring reality she found herself in. She writes stories she enjoys, and hopes others will enjoy it as well. A lot of her stories and novels begin with a ‘what if’, and then become so much more. She loves food and dancing as well, and this is usually reflected in writing. Today she lives in California with her long time boyfriend, and two bratty cats.

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About Secrets & Sins

Secrets and Sins is a collection of dark tales, where you can take a look into the minds of beings that would rather remain in the dark. Join us and visit worlds you may not want to know about, but once there you will get lost in it. Follow a tale of a girl whose sickness can end a life with a simple touch, or so she thinks. Fall into Not Again twisted world where humans are not in charge. Find the Darkness Within where you learn the errors of your ways, and see what the evil within can really do to someone.

SecretsSins

Excerpt

Not Again

The cold concrete pressing against Jerry’s flesh woke him up. With a heavy head, he pushed himself up. “What the?” He didn’t remember going outside. He was surrounded by plastic buildings and walking animals. “What the fuck?”

The dog couple walking past him stared as if they had never seen a human before. His brows frowned when a cat sniffed the air as it walked passed him. This can’t be real– he shook his head. It can’t.

Costumes, he told himself as he placed a smile on his lips. “Of course, it’s one of those hidden camera shows.” Feeling better, he rose to his feet.

Another cat slowed its pace when it saw the human. Arching an intrigued eyebrow, it continued on its way. Jerry pulled his shoulders back as he faced the striped being. “Great costume.”

“Excuse me pet,” he hissed. His lids lowered with disgust.

He took a step forward to face him. “You heard me, great costume.”

“Costume?” His head fell to the side in thought. “What’s a costume?”

“This is.” Without warning, he lunged forward to rip the head off the costume. Hissing, he extended his claws. Jerry felt them dig into his upper arms. “Shit,” he cursed. He desperately searched for the bottom of the mask. There was no bottom. Zipper, there has to be a zipper, he told himself. Fear gripped him.

The cat’s hair stood on end as it snapped at his neck. Ducking, he circled around it. No zipper appeared. Before he could rip off his shirt, he bounced around to face him. “You shall pay for that human. How dare you touch me!” His eyes filled with burning silver fury.

“Human? We are both human man,” he smiled, shock numbing him.

“How dare you!” He rose to his full height to tower over him. His claws rose into the air, ready to strike. “You shall die.”

Swallowing his fear, he had no idea what to do. His blood was already dripping down his arms. “There he is,” a deep voice yelled. Jerry heard footsteps rushing towards him. He was too scared to turn away from the enraged cat before him.

“He attacked me,” the cat pointed at him.

With his brows frowning, he finally turned. Stern dogs in uniform and carrying nets, glared at him. “We’ll add it to his charges,” one assured the cat.

Pleased, the cat nodded.

“Charges? What,” stunned he stared up at them. “Where am I?” It’s a dream, he thought, still refusing to believe.

One of the dog cops tightened its hold on the net. “So human,” he snarled the title. “Are you going to come along with us easy or not?”

“Come easy?”

He smiled, making him appear scarier than before. “Good.”

Slowly, they moved in on him. They’re going to take me in, he realized. Fear shot through his body, making him move. He ran the other way.

The dog cop’s smile dropped from his lips. “He’s going to make it hard.”

“Don’t they always?” The other one sighed.