02 Jun 2010
by Jeffrey Thomas
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Naturally, when you’re a writer you end up making the acquaintance of other writers — in these cyberpunkish times, usually through the likes of email, Facebook and whatnot. It’s very rewarding, and often in a literal sense: I tend to exchange copies of my own books with these fellow scribes. And in addition to having the pleasure of reading the work of some author you hadn’t encountered before, chances are he/she is going to tell others about you, whether it be in a review at Amazon or a mention on their blog. And so it is that I’d like to give a little plug here for two such authors of my recent acquaintance, who gifted me with stories that were entertaining indeed!
TEMPORARY MONSTERS, Ian Rogers
This is a chapbook from Burning Effigy Press, out of Ian’s native Canada. It’s nicely produced, with a very effective cover image of an ominous-looking Toronto, and streaking tailights like a spray of arterial blood. The story involves private investigator Felix Renn, who has the unfortunate knack of running into vampires and werewolves at every turn. See, this is an alternate reality, alongside which exists an even weirder reality called the Black Lands, a supernatural realm peopled by untold species of nasty creatures. TEMPORARY MONSTERS revolves around Toronto’s motion picture business, and has plenty of mystery, action, and intriguing characters, with a nicely textured relationship between Renn and his estranged wife. This definitely feels like an introduction for Felix Renn, who deserves a much larger story in which to conduct his sleuthing and monster-fighting, but Ian has just such a project up his sleeve and I’d advise some publisher out there to pick it up. This could be a series with a lot of commercial potential. And the story in this chapbook might make a good movie, too.
You can order TEMPORARY MONSTERS here: https://www.horror-mall.com/TEMPORARY-MONSTERS-by-Ian-Rogers-chapbook-p-20283.html
A FISTFUL OF HOLLERS, featuring Whitt Pond
This is a trade paperback collection of humorous stories of the Wild West, from CyberAliens Press and edited by Crystalwizard, Lyn Perry, and Y. B. Cats. To give you an idea of the proceedings, the cover features a steampunk robot with a tea kettle head, a T-Rex, and a tentacled critter. This last beasty is represented in a story by Whitt Pond, who like me lives in Massachusetts, like me is married to a Vietnamese woman, but who hails originally from Texas — hence his having written his contribution to this anthology, entitled LAW WEST OF THE MISKATONIC. Yep, the Miskatonic River, so you know this one’s going to bring that old Yankee Mr. Lovecraft out West for a spell. It’s a very fun read — involving necromancy and a thingie called the Lurker, and a saloon that doubles as a courtroom — and left me wanting to see more of what Whitt can do in the future, be it crazy humor like this or something straighforward. Either way, I’m game.
You can order A FISTFUL OF HOLLERS here: http://cyberaliens.webs.com/apps/webstore/products/show/1474938