Category: Geek Lit (page 1 of 14)

Anything book or literature related

The Vinyl Detective – The Run-Out Groove

An Atomic Moo Book Review!

Alright, El Moochadores! It’s the holiday weekend, and I’ve done some summer read’n. So, let’s kick today off with a couple of Atomic Moo Book Reviews courtesy of the good peoples over (yonder?) at Titan Books.

First up is a book I enjoyed the hell out of. figuratively speaking (of course), but I really enjoyed the first Vinyl Detective novel by author Andrew Cartmel and I was stoked to get to review the sequel. Though my opinion of hipsters is still pretty negative (what with their crusty beards and thick framed glasses), Cartmel’s mysteries are uniquely quirky and deeply engaging. In The Run-Out Groove The Vinyl Detective is back to suss out what happened to the lost child of a dead 1960’s rock icon. Here’s a the proper synopsis:

His first adventure consisted of the search for a rare record; his second the search for a lost child. Specifically the child of Valerian, lead singer of a great rock band of the 1960s, who hanged herself in mysterious circumstances after the boy’s abduction.

Along the way, the Vinyl Detective finds himself marked for death, at the wrong end of a shotgun, and unknowingly dosed with LSD as a prelude to being burned alive. And then there’s the grave robbing…

The mystery Cartmel lays out has a great mix of humor and danger that just sucks readers in. I think I finished this book in a day or two, and that was during a heavy work week. Though the Run-Out Groove has a similar beat to the first Vinyl Detective novel, this is very much its own story and readers who may have missed the first book won’t be left behind. I thought there was something very satisfying in reading the exploits of music geeks who find themselves in danger while uncovering a fifty year old mystery. Cartmel also does a brilliant job of writing outlandish characters, that can be humorous and deadly, but not cliches or tropes. Death to all hipsters, but not before another Vinyl Detective novel.

The Vinyl Detective: the Run-Out Groove can be found in all major bookstores, or you can get your copy online at Titanbooks.com.

Cheers.

The High Ground

An Atomic Moo Book Review

Way back in 2016 (if I can remember that far back) Titan Books sent me a pile of novels and “art of books” to review here on the Moo (heh). Anyways, 2016 was also a very tough year chuck full of scary personal problems. Notice how there hasn’t been a Moocast in a while? Well, probably not, but in the history of my life 2016 will go down as “not fun”, and that is despite going to comic book conventions as a vendor for the first time and kicking off both Atomic Moo #1 and Atomic Tails! However, things are getting a little better, and this pile of books sitting atop my Con Pile, is getting really annoying. Like a sort of silent guilt trip. Yeah, I took the books, I should read and review them. Which I’ve started to do again. Also, there’s a lot of creativity in these books, and we’re a geek creative website. It is very important to me to figure out how to be a creative professional, and peeking into the imagination of authors and artists I think can help. So, we’re back with another Atomic Moo Book Review! Better late then never, right?

First up is a paperback novel by writer Melinda Snoodgrass, a veteran SF and fantasy writer who has written for Star Trek, and worked with George (where’s the new damn book?) R. R. Martin. Keen.

The High Ground: Imperials Saga is a military SF novel set in a future galaxy conquered by humans and ruled by a mostly chauvinistic society. The story kicks off when, in a move to preserve power, the emperor’s daughter (Mercedes) becomes the first woman admitted to High Ground – an elite orbital military school. There she meets the son of a tailor (Tracy) who, despite his poor background, has won a scholar ship to the academy and hopes to one day rise above his “intitulado” (untitled) station in life. Then there’s some romance, political backstabbing, and all the cool stuff that goes along with alien subjugation, class warfare, and sexism. Keen.

For the most part, I did enjoy this book. Snodgrass creates an interesting future where humans have conquered a galaxy, yet (somehow) also reverted to an imperial government controlled by a patriotic aristocracy. Way back when I was napping through college I remember one of my anthropology professors discussing similar situations in world history. The idea being that as humanity has room to expand, and possibly compete with others, non-reproductive activity and rights take a back seat to baby making. In High Ground, Snodgrass presents a story where humans are desperate to fill planets with more humans so the rights of women and homosexuals take a backseat. I’m not saying I agree with this, but unconscious social decisions have always fascinated me. Like, cars. How the fuck did we all agree the car was a good idea. It sucks. It “Force Awakens” sucks, but somehow we all go along with it and spend way too much time starring at the ass end of a SUV with “Trump” bumper stickers all over the back of it! Digression aside, I also enjoyed how the current ruling families of her book evolved from the capitalism of today. The idea of Pepsi, McDonalds, and (gods helps us) Disney going on one day to spawn a ruling class of oligarchs, is really interesting. Also, this is a very feminist book. As a fully equipped dude, I think this should have bugged me a little more, but it didn’t. I think Snodgrass did a good job of introducing a bit of feminism into a military SF book without scaring guys away.

As far as criticisms of this novel go: I don’t think I dug the teen romance aspects of the book. Not that it wasn’t written well, or that others wouldn’t enjoy it, but I’m way past my teen years, and the “space high school” romances, and competitions, were tough for me to care about. My only other criticism would be that the book (mostly) sticks with the perspectives of Tracy and Mercedes, which gets claustrophobic at times. In a reading sense. Getting away from the protagonist and into the heads of some of the other characters would’ve been a nice trip at times.

So that’s the review El Moochadores! If you’re interested in checking out The High Ground you can currently find it in most bookstores or you can get your own copy online at Titan Books!

Cheers!

Anno Dracula 1899 and Other Stories

An Atomic Moo Book Review


I’ve been trying to write this review for about a week now, but I just keep tripping over my own life. Actually, I think I owe Titan an apology. They’ve sent me a stack of books to read and review, but personal, “my life’s a mess” stuff has kind of kept me occupied. However, things are getting better, and (as hard as it may be) I’m working to focus more on this site and exploring being a creative. Which means that hopefully, I’ll also get back my reading time. Hopefully.

Anyways, now out through Titan Books is a pretty niffty (yeah, “niffty”) collection of short stories by Kim Newman. This collection of short stories takes readers through the in and outs of 19th century macabre, old Hollywood, and even the life and times of a Martian movie star (I kind of especially dug that one). Anno Dracula 1899 and Other Stories is a collection of twenty-one short stories by a master story teller. Newman’s versatility as a writer is on full display here as he effortlessly switches gears from the late 1800’s to the 1950’s in such a way that totally engulfs the reader. Which is pretty damn amazing (for the books of his I’ve read) how he can perfectly capture the tone of the selected era when he writes. I think what enjoyed most about these books though was he hit (on almost every story) my kind of geeky fandom. I love old horror films, and when he wrote about American International Pictures being cursed by Vincent Price, or “Jack the Ripper” murder mystery based on the fall of EC’s Comics (not called EC comics in the story, but totally EC), I was digging it! Even his short stories that dealt with classic horror tales like Jekyll and Hyde, or a brilliant take on the Invisible Man, were incredibly entertaining to me. There’s not a lot of people I think I can go to (in my small circle of friends) and discuss my love of old Christopher Lee/Peter Cushing flicks, or how I have Treasure of the Sierra Madres and Casablanca pretty much memorized (not that there’s a lot/any of Bogart in this book, just saying…), but I think Newman would get it, and that’s kind of cool getting some of that fandom coming back at me through his short stories.

I honestly don’t have a lot of criticism for this book. Well, maybe that Newman’s enthusiasm for fandom can go extremely deep and it is possible to get lost in the references and parodies, but that only if you’re kind of in the know. For any casual reader, this a collection of really fun stories, and I highly recommend it. Also, go rent the Raven, and I hope you dig Price, Karloff, and Lorre and their best(?). Yeah, matter of opinion, but check it out all the same!

Anno Dracula 1899 and Other Stories is available in bookstores now, or you can get your copy online at Titan Books!

Cheers!

TOYS THAT TIME FORGOT

Kickstarter for a Book About Unproduced Toys!

I think I was about five or six years old when Dark Crystal came out, and there is no f***ing way I would have ever wanted to play with any toys from that creepy (weird) movie. However, I’ve always had an interest in toys and action figures. Maybe it is due to a bit of arrested development, or some head trauma, but I just never gave up on collecting figures from the stuff I liked. So, getting a book on toys that never were, would actually be really cool. There’s something about the mix of history and childhood that just seems right. Except Dark Crystal. Seriously. I still hate that movie and the nightmares it gave me.

Anyways, the The Toys That Time Forgot Kickstarter is about to end and I just wanted to give the Moochadores a heads up about a project (I think) is really interesting. Written by journalist Blake Wright this 200 page volume (when funded) will feature 20 + stories of toys that never made to the shelf. Stuff like Krull action figures, and Osmosis Jones, which may have made it to the prototype stage, put not to production. As of this post, the Kickstarter has hit all of its funding, but there’s still time to contribute and collect some cool rewards, plus get what looks to be a really cool book.

Check out the KS promo trailer below, along with a few sample images pulled from the Kickstarter page. Click here for more information about the book and contributor rewards.

Cheers!

Invasion!

invasion

An Atomic Moo Book Review of Luke Rhinehart’s New Novel!

Aliens have come to Earth and they’re here to play! Seriously, just play. Well, not seriously at all, but weird and funny in this new novel from Titan Books by author Luke Rhinehart where in fuzzy – shape shifting aliens from another dimension have come to Earth to change human attitudes towards money, power, sex, and everything else through the art of fun and play. The book is collection of fictional narratives most of which surround one alien (Louie) and his adoptive family, The Morton’s. Louie, and a few thousand of his fellow FF’s (funny fish), hop into of all sorts of trouble with the establishment until they are eventually declared a national threat and labeled as terrorists. Hilarity ensues. Here’s the books proper synopsis before the mostly half thought review:


It’s pretty weird. That’s what old codger Billy Morton thinks when “Louie” lands in his fishing boat and follows him home. He, his wife and two boys come quickly to love this playful alien, but when “Louie” starts using their computer to hack into government and corporate accounts, learn all that the NSA knows, and steal millions from banks to give to others, they realize that Louie and his friends mean trouble. The life of Billy and his family begins a roller-coaster ride of fame, fortune, jail, death, resurrection, and a distinguished ranking high on the FBI’s “Most Wanted” List.

When people (readers) go into book stores, they are going to find Luke Rhinehart’s Invasion in the science fiction/fantasy section of the store. Which isn’t where the book should be. The book is more of a political satire that uses aliens to tell readers of our own political and social errors. So, yeah there are aliens in the book, but this novel is about as much science fiction as Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five is about time travel. Though like Slaughterhouse Five, Invasion is chuck full of satirical intelligent humor.

Although I did enjoy the satire, and I agree with most of the authors sentiment toward our ruling political parties, I thought the book was way too long and often redundant. Also, many of the chapters that were supposed to be written by different characters often read similar (the Billy Morton chapters being the exception) and had a very “preachy” quality. It’s like the novel had a weird decision making problem of either being a funny satire, or going full sci-fi with its weird dimension hopping aliens. All of that aside; I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to readers. Part of me hopes this’ll be read by others who will then go out and end evil things like private prisons, the war and drugs, and Disney’s control of Star Wars, but I mostly think the book is above the heads of our current generation of bearded-man bun sporting hipsters, that already have a solid handle on blowing off the real world for play.

You can find your own copy of Invasion in book stores now or get a copy online at Titanbooks.com

Cheers!

The Age of Treachery!

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An Atomic Moo Book Review!

Okay, I’ve been trying to get this review done for about two weeks, but life just keeps getting in the way. So, I’m just going to start typing, and hopefully somewhere in the blathering that follows will at least pieces of a meaningful review. Here goes…

Gavin Scott’s Age of Treachery is an extremely entertaining suspense novel set in post World War II London. The story follows history professor Duncan Forrester, who has to prove that a friend did not commit the murder of a rival colleague in his history department. Trying to prove who murdered David Lyall is really tough though, because every one hated the man. Seeking the murderer takes Forrester across all of northern Europe and to some pretty fantastic encounters with some of the 20th century’s best fiction writers!

Usually, I don’t pick up mystery novels. So, I am a little grateful to Titan Books for introducing me to the genre and getting me this book to review. It kind of made up (a bit) for all the schlock entertainment flooding our televisions and movie theaters these days, and shows what a true art writing can be. I don’t know how a person even starts to write a mystery, but (by what ever method) Scott created a suspense filled story that was also thrilling and fun to read. The book takes a deep dive into post world war II history, and keeps a very “English/Sherlock Holmes” manner in its narrative. Which added a lot of charm to the story. I don’t think this will go down as one of the best mystery novels ever, but it definitely deserves a lot of credit for its unique mystery and incredible use of historical events (and literary assets like J.R.R. Tolkien) of the time. This is honestly one of the few novels where I don’t have any criticism after having read it. It was an intriguing, memorable, page turner. I was so into the book that I finished it in two days and I’m looking forward to future adventures of Duncan Forrester.

The Age of Treachery is available in all major book stores or you can get your copy online at Titanbooks.com!

It is the winter of 1946, and after years of war, ex-Special Operations Executive agent Duncan Forrester is back at his Oxford college as a junior Ancient History Fellow. But his peace is shattered when a hated colleague is found dead: stabbed and pushed from an upper window.
One of Forrester’s closest friends is arrested for the murder, but Forrester is not convinced of his guilt; the dead man had many enemies, and there are rumours that he was in possession of a mysterious Viking manuscript. A manuscript that may have been owned by a German spy…
Travelling from Oxford to bombed-out Berlin and to the fjords of Norway in his search for the truth, Forrester must use all his wartime skills to find the true killer.

Star Trek: 50 Artists 50 Years!

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An Atomic Moo Book Review of an Amazing Tribute Book!

Hello my fellow El Moochadores! As many of you know, we (the brothers moo) dabble in a little art. You may also know that the both of us are Trek fans. Well, classic Trek. Not that Jar Jar Abrams trash… and may rabid Tribbles gnaw off his testicles. The point is: We like art and Star Trek! Which means that the Star Trek: 50 Artists 50 Yearsimage_5 hard back book (Titan Books, 2016) is really, kind of, sort of, the exact book we want to read! And yes, I’m drinking well writing this! Wait. Anyways…

To celebrate the 50th (FIFTY!) years of Star Trek, Titan Books put together an amazing collection of art in one spectacular hardback cover! Fantastic. Heh. This book was specially commissioned by CBS and kicks off with a forward by Nicholas Meyer. Yeah! Wrath of frigg’n Kahn Meyer! Following that; Each chapter beautifully shows off the various pieces of art work along with artist interviews about the piece and how they made it. What’s great is the massive variety of art. Artist show off their talents for photography, painting, sculpture, and digital art all through the Trek spectrum! I think one of my favorite pieces is an OTS poster featuring every character from the show! It’s awesome! Okay, I know Titan sends us a lot of stuff, and I really try to be as honest as I can about the books we get, but I’m not lying. I Frigg’n love this book! I actually skipped it ahead of a bunch of other books (I’m way behind on my reviews. Sorry Titan) just to post about this book, and drink. Okay, I didn’t have to drink, but at least it’s something green.

I posted the official synopsis below along with a few sample images, but the book is way more than just some sample images. Go check it out and get an actually good piece of Star Trek while it’s out there! Again: go suck a dick Mr. Abrams.

Enjoy!

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Duskfall

Duskfall

An Atomic Moo Book Review of Christopher Husberg’s New Novel!

Okay El Moochadoes, I just finished reading Duskfall (Titan Books, 2016) by author Christopher Husberg, and… I dug it. So get in a mode for magic and fantasy as I review a book about folksy elves, religious zealots, and an amnesiac pulled from icy waters only to start kicking ass across a whole continent. No, not Bourne.

So, I was only half joking about that “Bourne” comment. The book follows three main characters and begins with Knot, a man found floating in an icy lake with a few arrows sticking out of him. Knot has no memory of his past life, and is named “knot” by the elves that found him, because of his remarkable ability to… tie knots. The elves of this story have fallen on hard times, and are considered by most to be second class citizens, but Knot lives with them for awhile and even agrees to marry the daughter (Winter) of the elf that found him, which would have been great if strange men hadn’t shown up on the wedding day and started to kill everyone. During this attack Knot shows that he can do much more than tie knots, by quickly killing the attackers, and then just as quick, abandons his new elf-wife to go figure out why he’s so good at killing. When Winter learns of his leaving, she tries to follow, but on her journey she also learns she can do a type of magic, but only at the cost of a horrible addiction. Meanwhile, in another city a priestess learns that her sister has discovered some ancient scriptures and has been communicating with their goddess. Which would be all good and well, if that didn’t mean a holy inquisition wasn’t about to hit her and her family full in the face. The story follows from there and eventually brings the three main characters together on an adventure that will bring them all face to face with old gods and dark daemons! Which I think is a demon or maybe a goth kid with shitty parents… I don’t know.

For the most part I think Husberg did a great job of creating a new fantasy world. His spin on elves (called Tiellan’s) as a down trodden, and forgot folk was unique. I also really enjoyed his new take on magic as special mental abilities, and I think Winter’s story, of learning to use this magic while fighting addiction, were my favorite parts of the book. Husberg did a wonderful job a creating a dark, and cold, vibe for this story, and because of this the story had a feeling (for me at least) of a world where magic was sort of dying out, but you could still trip over the odd vampire every now and again. Then the weird stuff happens with Jane and Cinzia, and POW! World chuck full of magic again. Oh, yeah. About the vampire; I should also mention that I enjoyed the character of Astrid. As far as Draculias go, she’s pretty cool.

The only criticisms I have for this story (just two) are minor ones. First: I felt Knots back story, when revealed, was a little convoluted. I’m trying not to spoil much here, but I think he would’ve been a better character without the amnesia and later reveal of what makes Knot a Knot. I can’t say what it takes to make a believable character in fiction, but in a lot of these stories I read it seems (to me) like writers make way too many excuses to explain why their protagonist is an ultimate bad ass, and also a heck of a good guy. I think a vivid memory, and free will, would’ve made a much better hero for this story.

The other criticism is more of personal one, and though I’m totally going to muck it up, I still kind of wanted to explain why it soured this book for me a bit. At a certain point in this story I suspected the author was LDS (Mormon), and although his being religious doesn’t bug me, having his religion pop in the story kind of does. I was raised in an LDS family, and I even did my missionary work in Brazil. Shortly after which I left the church. I’ve spent the better part of twenty years getting as far away from that religion (or any) as I can, so having it swing around again (even in the form of fantasy story) kind of left a bad taste in my mouth. Well, brain. Anyways; I don’t think these elements would hurt the story for any other reader, and it shouldn’t, but… eh, kind of took me out of the story, and it was hard to get back into it after that. It also has me pondering my personal biases and how I’ll expect enjoyment from any off the shelf fantasy novel I’ll pick up, but how quickly I turn my nose up at stories that contain any of my own past/personal religious myths. Which means that since reading this fantasy story, I’ve been spending too much time in the dusty parts of my brain, and I don’t like that. Though, Husberg did do an amazingly progressive spin on the Joe Smith story, and using priestesses, goddesses, and a little inquisition, made for a better story than the crud I had to sit through in Sunday school.

All the same though, readers can find of copy of Duskfall at all major book stores now, or you can get your own copy online at Titanbooks.comM. Check out a complete synopsis below!

Cheers!


Stuck with arrows and close to death, a man is pulled from the icy waters of the Gulf of Nahl. As he is nursed back to health by a local fisherman, two things become very clear: he has no idea who he is, and he can kill a man with terrifying ease.
The fisherman is a tiellan, a race which has long been oppressed and grown wary of humans. His daughter, Winter, is a seemingly quiet young woman, but behind her placid mask she has her demons. She is addicted to frostfire – a substance that both threatens to destroy her and simultaneously gives her phenomenal power.
A young priestess, Cinzia, hears the troubling news of an uprising in her native city of Navone. Absconding from the cloistered life that she has kept for the last seven years, she knows she must make the long journey home. The flames of rebellion threatening her church and all that she believes in are bad enough, but far worse is the knowledge that the heretic who sparked the fire is her own sister.
These three characters may have set out on different paths, but fate will bring them together on one thrilling and perilous adventure.

The Vinyl Detective: Written in Dead Wax!

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An Atomic Moo Book Review of Andrew Cartmel’s New Novel!

Andrew Cartmel’s The Vinyl Detective almost abates my hatred for hipsters. Almost. I don’t think anyone can stop hating hipsters. It’s just too easy to despise those bearded, coffee obsessed, man bun toting, shit bags that clog our beach streets with Fiats and Vespa scooters, but somehow (weirdly) Cartmel crafted a story that makes a coffee chugging – vinyl obsessed – hipster kind of cool. With a solid mystery to boot! Wow.

Written in Dead Wax begins when the nameless vinyl detective (later nicknamed “Chef”) is hired to find a rare Jazz LP by a now defunct 1950’s publishing label. Up until this point, Chef has eeked out a living by scouring London’s charity shops (I’m guessing that’s either like a pawn shop or a 2nd hand store…?) for rare records to sell online, or add to his vast collection. Then one day he is contacted by a foreign company’s very beautiful representative, Nevada, to help track down an incredibly rare jazz album, Easy Come, Easy Go, but finding the record won’t be easy. There just happen to be a pair of murderous blonde athletes also hunting the album and then there’s the dark mystery hidden in the record it self!

The thing is, I really enjoyed this book. Cartmel did a wonderful job of making his characters (though still disgustingly hipster-ish) likable and fun. Chef is an excellent detective, in a sort of not being a detective kind of way. He’s the total underdog hero, and as a geeky outsider myself, I can’t help but root for the underdog. I think the stories unique way of unfolding a mystery is also what makes the book such a great read. Written in Dead Wax takes it’s readers deep into the world of music, and (even better for geeks) collecting. I honestly have no opinion on what sounds better, CD or LP, but I’ve got a closet full of vintage Star Wars figures. I could easily tell you about the backing card, year produced, or existing variants of any of the collectible action figures (not dolls!) safely sealed away in the many containers which are piled to the ceiling in my closet. I can even spot reproductions and cheap knock offs. I don’t know why, but reading about collectors, and a mystery that goes deep into their respective world, was really refreshing. I honestly think this is one of the best mystery stories since The Big Lebowski! And yes, that was a mystery too. In fact; I’m almost willing (grudgingly) to consider the likes of Chef and Tinkler as geeks. Almost. ‘just have to lose the cats and any opinion about coffee.new16oz-coffee-cup Seriously!? What grown man keeps cats and gives a shit about the taste of coffee!? Coffee should be black and burn just as hard going out at as it did going in! That’s it. Its there to get the job done. You drink it, stay awake, and lose a year or so of unwanted life expectancy. When I put a $1.29 of hard earned cash down on the counter for my 7-11 what ever brew, I need it to do its goddamn job of keeping me upright and lucid for the next few hours. Not brag about its “aroma”, or what part of India a child laborer had to pull it out of. Coffee should be burly, stalwart, and humble. Just like my women. ‘merica.

Anyways… I’m very much looking forward to the release of the next book (The Run-Out Groove), and even if Titan doesn’t send me a review copy I’ll probably go pick one up. Yeah, I’m willing to spend my own money on the next edition. That’s how much I enjoyed this. Below I posted a copy of The Vinyl Detectives official synopsis. However, visit Titanbooks.com to get a copy of your own.

Cheers!

He is a record collector — a connoisseur of vinyl, hunting out rare and elusive LPs. His business card describes him as the “Vinyl Detective” and some people take this more literally than others.
Like the beautiful, mysterious woman who wants to pay him a large sum of money to find a priceless lost recording — on behalf of an extremely wealthy (and rather sinister) shadowy client.
Given that he’s just about to run out of cat biscuits, this gets our hero’s full attention. So begins a painful and dangerous odyssey in search of the rarest jazz record of them all…

Dead Letters!

DeadLetters

An Anthology of the Undelivered, The Missing, The Returned…

An Atomic Moo Book Review

The Dead Letter office is a real thing. According to Wikipedia (never a real source), the dead letter office is “is a facility within a postal system where un-deliverable mail is dealt with”. A lot of countries have dead letter offices, but I think the US is the only one to actually use the name. According to 99percentinvisible.com – over “90,000,000 items were marked undeliverable-as-addressed (UAA) and entered the dead letter and parcel system.” This is all really cool, and (of course) it is also the prefect premise for dozens of stories the likes of which can be found in a new anthology from Titan Books! See how I brought that around. I think I’m good at this…

Anyways… Now out through Titan Books is a fantastic new collection of stories centered around the (mostly) sinister idea of unwanted mail! Okay… on the surface you wouldn’t think that was such a scary idea, but think about it: The wrong addressed letter, the misplaced package, that message that just disappeared, represent an idea of mystery. Opening a strangers mail is like a starting off point to the unknown! A possible leap into an unknown mystery! The shadowy secrets of your apartments former resident’s credit history suddenly laid bare! It’s possibly a goddamn ticket to the Twilight Zone, people!

Exploring the vast ocean possibly within 90 + million undelivered messages are eighteen writers (list below) who contribute their literary talents to this idea. Now I don’t want to give the idea that Dead Letters is all spooky horror stuff. The variety of stories cover everything from horror to mystery to the kind of mundane. One of my favorite stories in the book is actually one of the first stories and deals with a mysterious green envelope. Not necessarily an evil green letter (could be), but definitely a very bizarre green letter. Then other stories take you through painful personal histories or to mythical places. It’s this variety of ideas all based on the one premise that makes this book a fun read. There’s even an H.P. Lovecraft-esque story by Andrew Lane that reads incredibly spooky, and I think would have made Lovecraft proud. Overall, I really dug this book. Though, I thought it was weird every person in the story had a moral dilemma about opening a piece of lost mail (really? Not one guy/gal was like, “free shit!”), all of the stories take an unexpected journey and some of them are even kind of touching. I think this would be a much better book to read in the fall, closer to Halloween, but if you’re looking for an overall eerie vibe in your summer reading, then The Dead Letters would be a great place to start!

Dead Letters is available now in all major book stores, or you can get your copy online at Titanbooks.com. I posted the official synopsis below along with a complete list of contributing authors.

The Dead Letters Office: the final repository of the undelivered. Love missives unread, gifts unreceived, lost in postal limbo. Dead Letters: An Anthology features new stories from the masters of horror, fantasy and speculative fiction, each inspired by an inhabitant of the Dead Letters Office, including tales from Joanne Harris, China Miéville & Maria Dahvana Headley, Adam LG Nevill and Michael Marshall Smith.

Conrad Williams , Joanne Harris , Michael Marshall Smith , China Miéville , Nicholas Royle , Ramsey Campbell , Pat Cadigan , Nina Allan , Angela Slatter , Alison Moore , Kirsten Kaschock , Maria Dahvana Headley , Steven Hall , Lisa Tuttle , Muriel Gray , Claire Dean , Christopher Fowler , Adam LG Nevill , Andrew Lane

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