Tuesday, July 22, 2014
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Just wanted to give you a quick heads up about a cool kickstarter campaign. Steam Crow is producing t-shirts of some of their coolest designs. They have Poe, Lovecraft, Tesla and Rasputin "altered ego" shirts.
Are those awesome or what? I have the silk screen print of the Lovecraft design on my living room wall. Now I need a Poe shirt for myself and a Tesla for my science nerd hubby.
The kickstarter runs just until the end of this month! So get on over there now before it's too late!
Here's the link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/steamcrow/altered-egos
Not familiar with Steam Crow? Check them out at their website.
They are a family-owned small business that makes one-of-a-kind monster-themed art. They are regulars at Comicons here in Arizona and just super nice people in general.
Monday, July 21, 2014
Release Date November 2014
Sunday, July 20, 2014
Saturday, July 19, 2014
Friday, July 18, 2014
The first full trailer for the new series of Doctor Who is finally here!
Check it out:
What do you think? They said Capaldi's Doctor would be darker, and you definitely get that vibe from the preview. Also, I saw Madame Vastra! Yea! Oooh and dinosaurs? Heck yeah!
So excited. So excited. Happy dance. Happy dance.
Doctor Who returns August 23rd!!
Thursday, July 17, 2014
For fans of gritty in-your face crime-fiction graphic novels, there is no comparison."
So, this edition of The Hunter is a tribute to the original. It is the complete novel, accompanied by full color illustrations by Darwyn Cooke. Cooke has previously adapted the Parker novels into comic form, and so this illustrated edition is another way he has chosen to pay homage to the Westlake novels that he loves. And the illustrations here are very gorgeous. The style captures the 1960s feel perfectly and so it compliments the book in just the right way.
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
P. N. Elrod, author of the Vampire Files series, started her career writing game manuals for TSR, the company that created Dungeons and Dragons. If you’ve played D&D, you may remember the Ravenloft campaign setting, a realm of haunted castles, vampires, werewolves, and other vintage horror motifs. That setting originated with a game module called “Ravenloft,” in which player characters confront an awesomely powerful vampire lord, Count Strahd von Zarovich of Barovia, D&D’s Dracula figure. After publishing several of her Jack Fleming “Vampire Files” novels, Elrod was commissioned to write Strahd’s autobiography. In I, STRAHD: MEMOIRS OF A VAMPIRE (1993), the Count narrates his early life and transformation into a vampire. He does not start out evil, and Elrod skillfully portrays his descent into darkness.
In life, as a noble warrior, battle-hardened and sometimes harsh, but honorable, Strahd hasn’t had time for a family. At the beginning of the story, he welcomes his much younger brother, Sergei, to his castle. Never having had the chance to know his brother in the past, Strahd sincerely rejoices in this new relationship. At first, he doesn’t resent Sergei’s youth, attractiveness, and pleasure in life. But then both of them fall in love with the same woman, Tatyana. She becomes engaged to Sergei, while thinking of Strahd only as a cherished elder brother. Strahd’s love for Sergei transforms to bitter jealousy of the young man’s enjoyment of all the happiness the Count’s warrior life has barred him from. Making a pact with the powers of darkness, Strahd slays his brother and rises as a vampire nourished by Sergei’s blood. The Count’s declaration of love to Tatyana, naturally, has a tragic outcome. Horrified, she leaps from the castle balcony to her death. The vampire lord Strahd evolves into a bloodthirsty tyrant, while an enchanted mist springs up to wall off his realm from the other planes of the multiverse. For the rest of his undead existence, he seeks Tatyana’s reincarnation in one maiden after another, although every such relationship ends in disaster. This obsession and his craving for power become his sole passions.
Elrod makes Strahd an interesting, rounded character whom we can sympathize with even though he eventually becomes a monster of supernatural evil. She infuses his voice with hints of dry humor and wry wit that help to individualize him. Despite his tragic fall, he retains a sense of responsibility for the domain he rules with stern justice. Strahd develops into a credible combination of the tormented Byronic anti-hero of Gothic vampire tradition, the romantic vampire perpetually seeking his lost love, and the Dracula-like undead lord dominating terrified subjects from his haunted castle.
As well as a short story about Strahd, “Caretaker,” in the anthology TALES OF RAVENLOFT (1994), Elrod also wrote I, STRAHD: THE WAR AGAINST AZALIN (1998). In this sequel, framed by a scene in which Dr. Rudolph Van Richten, Ravenloft’s Van Helsing figure, discovers Strahd’s memoirs, the vampire lord forms an unstable alliance with the powerful lich (undead wizard) Azalin. Their eventual shift to open hostilities, of course, doesn’t destroy either of them, since media tie-in fiction has to “return the toys to the box” intact. Even so, the book is an exciting horror-fantasy tale that reveals a bit more of Strahd’s character. Readers don’t need any acquaintance with D&D to enjoy these Ravenloft-based novels. All the information required to understand the stories is included in the texts, so they stand on their own as dark Gothic adventures.
Margaret L. CarterCarter's Crypt
Sunday, July 13, 2014
A rash of grisly serial murders plagued Seattle until the infamous "Beacon Hill Butcher" was finally hunted down and killed by police chief Edward Shank in 1985. Now, some thirty years later, Shank, retired and widowed, is giving up his large rambling Victorian house to his grandson Matt, whom he helped raise.
Settling back into his childhood home and doing some renovations in the backyard to make the house feel like his own, Matt, a young up-and-coming chef and restaurateur, stumbles upon a locked crate he’s never seen before. Curious, he picks the padlock and makes a discovery so gruesome it will forever haunt him… Faced with this deep dark family secret, Matt must decide whether to keep what he knows buried in the past, go to the police, or take matters into his own hands.
Meanwhile Matt’s girlfriend, Sam, has always suspected that her mother was murdered by the Beacon Hill Butcher—two years after the supposed Butcher was gunned down. As she pursues leads that will prove her right, Sam heads right into the path of Matt’s terrible secret.
A thriller with taut, fast-paced suspense, and twists around every corner, The Butcher will keep you guessing until the bitter, bloody end."
The book starts with a punch and they just keep coming. You are introduced to Edward Shank and right from the beginning the author tells you that he's "The Butcher." That is not the surprise here, so no spoilers. Edward is a bad, bad man. He was chief of police for years and basically he framed a guy- a bad guy in his own right, but not the serial killer Edward was- for his crimes. He retired, and he left his house to his grandson, Matt, who is a successful restauranteur, and he is moving himself into a retirement home.
Matt is a rising star in the food community and he's getting his own show on the Fresh Network. But all of his success is creating a rift between him and his girlfriend, Sam. He is becoming more distant, and is having trouble controlling his anger issues, and he's basically being a lousy boyfriend.
Sam, is struggling with her frustration with Matt and her burgeoning feelings for a long-time friend named Jason. She's also researching the Butcher case, because she believes her mother was one of his victims- after the supposed "real killer" had already died. She knows that most people won't believe her, but she is finding evidence that suggests that maybe Seattle PD got the wrong guy all those years ago.
Obviously, when Matt learns who his grandfather is, he is faced with a huge dilemma- turn the guy in or not? And as Sam is getting closer and closer to the truth, she is in more and more danger. Both from Edward, as we might expect, but also from Matt. It isn't clear if Matt is going to go the way Edward has, or if he's going to save his soul before he lets darkness overtake him.
There are twists and turns along the way, and moments that made me actually gasp, so it is a pretty suspenseful read. Do be aware though, that the content could be disturbing for some- we are talking about a man who killed, tortured and raped women for decades. There are no graphic depictions of these acts, but plenty of references to them.
But if you want a book that will shock you and keep you flipping pages right to the end, then this is a good one. Five stars from me.