Review: An Ideal Vessel by Sarah Hans

An Ideal Vessel by Sarah Hans
Dragon’s Roost Press (May 2018)

140 pages; $9.99 paperback; $7.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Before I get into this, you need to answer a question for yourself: Are you prepared for latter-Victorian automatons possessed by ages-old paladins squaring off against demons? The answer to that question directly affects your interest in Sarah Hans’ debut novella, An Ideal Vessel. Continue Reading

Review: Lost Films edited by Max Booth III and Lori Michelle

Lost Films edited by Max Booth III and Lori Michelle
Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing (August 2018)

226 pages, $18.95 paperback; $6 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

We all love films, both personal home videos and big screen productions. They become a part of our lives. But what do we do when our lives interweave with the celluloid?Continue Reading

Review: Cockblock by C.V. Hunt

Cockblock by C.V. Hunt
Amazon Digital Services (June 25, 2018)

108 pages; $2.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Sonya and Callie just want to go out for a date. What they don’t want is to find themselves surrounded by men who seem incapable of doing anything but spout lame pick up lines and force themselves on anyone or anything they come across. What follows is a surprisingly harrowing ordeal of survival that reminded me quite pleasantly of Jack Ketchum’s Ladies’ Night.Continue Reading

Review: Nightly Owl, Fatal Raven by Jessica McHugh

Nightly Owl, Fatal Raven by Jessica McHugh
Raw Dog Screaming Press (June 14, 2018)

220 pages, $15.95 paperback; $4.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

You know what I was just thinking we don’t have nearly enough of? Hyper-violent, dystopian, post-apocalyptic sword and sandals-style fantasy with a hefty seasoning of Shakespearean drama. Luckily, we have Jess McHugh’s Nightly Owl, Fatal Raven swooping in to pluck out our eyes.Continue Reading

Review: Like Jagged Teeth by Betty Rocksteady

Like Jagged Teeth by Betty Rocksteady
Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing (April 2017)

118 pages, $11.95 paperback; $3.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Betty Rocksteady appears to be a bit of a newcomer on the scene. I hadn’t seen her name or work prior to this year. However, if Like Jagged Teeth is anything to go on, she’s kicking the door right off its hinges.Continue Reading

Review: The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion by Margaret Killjoy

The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion by Margaret Killjoy
Tor Books (August 2017)

130 pages, $10.39 paperback; $3.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Brace yourself for this one, friendos, because it gets pretty weird here. I know. I know. Whodathunk a book about crustpunks that summon a demonic deer to protect their squat only to have the demondeer turn on them would be weird. Odd how that works.Continue Reading

Review: Witches by Donna Lynch and Steven Archer

Witches by Donna Lynch and Steven Archer
Raw Dog Screaming Press (March 2018)

66 pages, $23.06 paperback
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

I never read Daughters of Lilith, the previous literary/artistic collaboration between Donna Lynch and Steven Archer. Why have I never read it? Seriously, because Witches is a wonderful, odd bit of joy in the world.

Let’s start with the obvious: $25 is a bit intimidating when looking at a book of poetry, especially one this short. But, as much as it feels weird saying these words in this specific order, this is more than just a book of poetry. It is also more than just a book of art. It’s the combination of the two and how they mesh and interact to create something that, to beg forgiveness for the cliché, is much more than the sum of its parts.Continue Reading

Review: If You Died Tomorrow I Would Eat Your Corpse by Wrath James White

If You Died Tomorrow I Would Eat Your Corpse by Wrath James White
CLASH Books (February 2018)

100 pages, $13.95 paperback; $5.95 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

I know poetry fans are a fairly small subset. Fans of extreme horror poetry even more so. Once we cut (CUT—Ha! See what I did there?) that down to fans of extreme horror erotic poetry, we’ve got Steve. Maybe Jessica. Clearly, Leza is. But I’m pretty sure those three bought this the second it came out. The question is how to convince the rest of you.

Because If You Died Tomorrow is just solid poetry, regardless of your personal proclivities.Continue Reading

Review: It’s a Weird Winter Wonderland edited by Robert Bose and Axel Howerton

It’s a Weird Winter Wonderland edited by Robert Bose and Axel Howerton
Coffin Hop Press (October 2017)

276 pages, $14.95 paperback; $4.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Call me a grinch, or whatever. I’m cool with it. I’m just not that into Christmas themed stuff. The fluff and crass commercialism bugs me. At the same time, I love weird stories and I’ve been on a crime kick lately, so I was still drawn to this one.Continue Reading

Review: ‘Cry Your Way Home’ by Damien Angelica Walters

Cry Your Way Home by Damien Angelica Walters
Apex Publications (January 2, 2018)

240 pages, $14.95 paperback; $4.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

I’m hoping by now that you already know who the esteemed Ms. Walters is. The queen of deft, delightfully flowing, yet quietly unobtrusive words, and the wielder of one hell of a wicked blade aimed right at your weak spots, is back with another handful of slender needles to poke holes in the red lump of knotted muscle. It doesn’t disappoint.Continue Reading

Review: Henry & Glenn Forever & Ever: Completely Ridiculous Edition by Tom Neely

Henry & Glenn Forever & Ever: Completely Ridiculous Edition by Tom Neely
Microcosm Publishing (September 2017)

288 pages, $17.,64 hardcover; $11.99 paperback; $5.39 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

It seems like a silly idea at best. At worst, a bro-heavy homophobic mess masquerading as satire. You take the two loudest, virulently masculine icons of the early Hardcore movement, Henry Rollins and Glenn Danzig, and make a series of comics about them in a relationship. Heck, the standard Odd Couple tripe pretty much takes care of itself. Who would have thought it would turn into something much more over the decade-plus long run collected here?Continue Reading

Review: ‘Buffalo Soldier’ by Maurice Broaddus

Buffalo Soldier by Maurice Broaddus
Tor (April 2017)

144 pages, $9.57 paperback; $3.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

So, we’ve got Desmond Coke, right? He’s a former James Bondian spy (full of all the expected baddass, class and Dapper Dan style that goes with the title) who found out a little too much. There’s also this boy, Lij Tafari, stuck at the center of the “too much” I just mentioned. They strike off from their home to find a place where the boy can live a normal life in peace, without being the pawn of political figureheads.Continue Reading

Review: ‘Goat Song Sacrifice (Death Metal Epic II) by Dean Swinford

Goat Song Sacrifice (Death Metal Epic II) by Dean Swinford
Atlatl Press (May 2017)

201 pages, $13.00 paperback
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Welcome back to the continuing adventures of David Fosberg, intrepid aspiring purveyor of the metallic arts most black. If you read Book One (The Inverted Katabasis), that is. If not, you’ll probably still be okay. We start off with Davey living la vida nekro in Belgium with his new bandmate, Svart. Surfing couches, drinking beer and playing only the most kvlt riffs as a part of Desekration. New members are discovered and more things happen.Continue Reading

Review: ‘Night Moves’ by Mary SanGiovanni

Night Moves by Mary SanGiovanni
Post Mortem Press (July 2017)

216 pages, $16.00 paperback; $3.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

Fair warning: you may be disappointed to find out that Night Moves is not themed around the works of Bob Seger and his hallowed band of Silver Bullet miscreants. However, it does contain seven short stories and two novellas by one of the finest purveyors of weird horror in the business. Continue Reading

Review: ‘Boy’s Night: An Extreme Horror’ by Wrath James White and Matt Shaw

Boy’s Night: An Extreme Horror by Wrath James White and Matt Shaw
CreateSpace (June 2017)

91 pages, $7.99 paperback; $2.99 e-book
Reviewed by Anton Cancre

I generally dig Wrath James White. Both The Ressurectionist and 400 Days of Oppression held sly, unique takes on what usually qualifies as “Hardcore” or “Extreme” horror. I don’t really know anything about Matt Shaw, but this is the book Amazon dumped from their catalog until the cover was redesigned, so I had to buy it, though it has been returned with a different cover.

Unfortunately, it failed to live up to my expectations. Continue Reading