Alarums by Richard Laymon

Posted on 13th July 2011 in Reviews

I’ve loved reading Richard Laymon’s horror novels since, as a teenager, I picked up a copy of his horror novel Flesh. That book totally engrossed me with its riveting, and at times quite shocking, sci-fi-tinted, story of alien infestation and zombie-like menace. Here was a horror writer who knew how to distil his words and ideas down into sharp and scary texts, time and again, to great effect.

Alarums is equally punchy and precise. Its focus is upon a pair of sisters, Melanie and Penelope Conway, who couldn’t be more different. Melanie is a concert violinist, and is quiet with a slightly retracted and passive personality, whilst her sister Penelope is the opposite; she’s very attractive and quite outgoing, and is bold and assertive where her sister is more restrained. Click here to read more.. »

The Seven Days of Peter Crumb by Jonny Glynn

Posted on 16th May 2011 in Reviews

Jonny Glynn’s The Seven Days of Peter Crumb is a real horror novel. That’s not to say it’s non-fiction, for this is a lovingly crafted, thankfully invented, tale of debauched serial-killer-style madness. And by that we’re talking genuine ‘chaos in the pre-frontal cortex’ type-stuff, not just ‘two pencils up the nose and boxer-shorts on the head’-inspired fakery.

It’s also a book touched with moments of brilliance, but equally counterbalanced with an at times misdirected, overabundance of violence.  When it was published in 2007, more than one comparison was made to Brett Easton Ellis’ stunning psychological thriller/horror An American Psycho, and it’s not hard to see how such comparisons were drawn. Click here to read more.. »

Loss of Separation by Conrad Williams

Posted on 8th April 2011 in Reviews

Broken, scarred, and mentally and physically fatigued following a hit-and-run accident, things couldn’t get much worse for Paul Roan. He and his girlfriend had moved to the coastal village of Southwick to open a B&B following a near-calamitous accident in his old job as a first officer on a Boeing 777. That dream is now soured, as after six months spent in coma he awakens to find his partner has vanished.

That’s not all. Something strange is happening here; on the beaches things aren’t what they seem, and the townsfolk see Paul as a kind of sin-eater, purging the shadows of their past by putting their personal objects to the flame. But it’s not just the detritus of the locals he must contend with, as he struggles to regain a sense of balance in a world in which the boundaries appear to be blurring. Click here to read more.. »