Writer of Horror Fiction

Archive for October, 2010

Review of Tony Monchinski’s “I Kill Monsters: Fury”

I have read Tony Monchinski’s take on zombies in his Eden books and was intrigued by the opportunity given to me to check out his particular slant on vampires with his new series, ‘I Kill Monsters’, of which Fury is the first book. Tony is apparently confident that he will be writing this series for a while, because he has nine titles listed in total on the list of books he has written at the front of this novel. I have no doubt that Tony will complete these other books and credit him for having the vision to have them all lined up and titled already.

Fury is urban fantasy, with all the monsters of myth coming to life on the page, although the focus on this novel is the vampire. While other monster archetypes are hinted at, including Furies among others, a Genie out of its bottle is the only other creature we get to see in this tale. Most of the world doesn’t know about these strange creatures, as they remain hidden, although they are definitely a part of every day life in the world Tony has created here. This story takes place in New York City, and the author has a knack for working in that environment and breathing life into the characters that inhabit the city. I admire his skill at creating dialog that feels natural and unforced and is unique to the Big Apple. This story starts out with a group of thieves that work the vampires of the city-stealing blood from one clan and selling it to another. Though they are dealing with vampires, these guys are just like any other thieves you might meet-they do their jobs and then fade into the background, until the next job comes along. All except Boone, who is the muscle for the squad, and a guy who everyone wonders about-even other members of his crew. He doesn’t seem to have any restraints-he is a hardcore drug user, including steroids, which have turned him into a rage machine. The crew boss likes having him around, while just about everyone else doesn’t. Boone presents the reader with a great anti-hero. He is sort of like having a wild animal as a pet-they behave because you feed them, but you never know when their disposition may change. Boone is articulately drawn, intriguing, and fierce.

Tony has done what I believe he set out to do, which was to pushing vampires back into the darkness, making them the despised, wretched leaches on humanity that they actually are, versus the sweet, loving, romantic figures they have become in popular culture these days. Whether or not future installments in this series remains focused on vampires or stretches things to include other creatures of darkness remains to be seen, but I am anxious to see what Tony has in store for us next.

My only grumble here is that we are left hanging, with only hints at what Boone is to become. Given his personality and the name of the series, we can guess where things are headed, but I think we are in for some significant twists as he discovers his path in life.

You can find I Kill Monsters: Fury at Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/I-Kill-Monsters-Tony-Monchinski/dp/1453677437/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1288218294&sr=8-1

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A few updates on my new book and other stuff

I thought it would be a good idea to pass along a few updates on things.  First off, I wanted to thank Frank and the other folks at That Book Place for their hospitality this past Saturday.  The book signing with Ben Rogers was a great experience and their book store is a fantastic place.  If you are ever near Madison, Indiana, you HAVE to check it out.  Great used books and they can order up any new ones that you are interested in as well.

In other news, the second book in my trilogy, Into the Dark, has been sent off to be formatted.  Yep, the editing is complete and my obsessive-compulsive need to read it fifteen times in an attempt to catch every last mistake (which you simply cannot do, no matter how hard you try) is done.  It is now in the extremely capable hands of Kody Boye, who is a formatter extraordinare.   Philip Rogers is currently working on the cover and has passed along a rough draft of the back cover of the book, which looks great.  While I have not seen the art for the cover, the theme will be similar to what was on the first cover.  The back also retains that same flavor and to say that I am excited to see what Philip comes up with is the understatement of the year.

I will be working on another “Dark Story”, which is actually a continuation of the previous one, and will be about George and Jason again, very soon.  I am hoping to have something posted within the next week or so.  I am presently going to focus on a short story that has been nagging me for a while and try to get it done in the next few days, then I will be editing the next DS for the blog.

And for you folks who have not seen the back cover synopsis for Into the Dark, here it is again, for your viewing pleasure:

Six weeks ago, the mysterious virus came out of nowhere and engulfed the world.  Everyone infected seemed to die … then rise again.

Jeff Blaine did his best to hold his family together and to protect them from the horrors scratching at their door, but in the end, they were ripped away from him like everything else that ever mattered.

Lost and alone, Jeff decided his only option was to destroy as many of the monsters that stole his life away before they destroy him as well.  But when he discovers Megan, George, and Jason, three other survivors not interested in giving up just yet, he reluctantly accepts that there might still be a reason to fight and live to see another day.

Traveling through the blasted landscape their world has become, the quartet discovers that the living dead aren’t the only danger with which they must cope.  Even other survivors who promise safety and security from the hordes of ghouls roaming the wastelands will test loyalties and their faith in humankind.

Jeff and his small band of newfound friends must forge a semblance of life in the newly blighted world.  And they will have only the light of their own humanity by which to navigate as everything around them descends into the dark.

More updates as they come up.  As I have already mentioned, Into The Dark will be released between Thanksgiving and Christmas, so it is coming soon!


Book Signing this Saturday

Ben Rogers and I will be taking part in the Books of the Dead Signings at That Book Place in Madison, Indiana.  It is located at 337 Clifty Drive and will run from 12-3.  There will also be an opportunity for customers to dress up as zombies for this event, so it should be a real blast!  I will be signing copies of my book, Comes The Dark, and Ben will be signing his book, Faith and The Undead.

You can check out That Book Place on the web, and become their fan on Facebook, at http://www.thatbookplace.com/.  They did an interview with me back in July, which is posted on their website, and they do a lot of other great interviews and reviews of books.  Please help support independent book stores like this one, because they bring you a lot of great books and authors that bigger chains seem to pass over.

Thanks!


Commercial for Library of the Living Dead!

Check out the commercial for Library of the Living Dead Press that was shot at Horror Realm last month.  A lot of folks were involved with this and I had the privilege of being one of the zombies in the commercial.  It was a blast!  I’m the guy with the bloody face, by the way.  Wait…everyone had a bloody face, heh.  I’m the guy with the red shirt, if that helps.  Well, it doesn’t matter if you can’t find me in the crowd, because we’re zombies-we’re sorta supposed to be hard to tell apart.

Enjoy watching the video.  I know I enjoyed being a part of the making of it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuBxKOEcVMQ

 


Back Cover Description for the sequel to Comes The Dark and some other news.

I just wanted to pass on my first update on the sequel to Comes The Dark.  The original plan was to release it in January, but with sales for Comes The Dark going as well as the have been, the publisher wants to strike while the iron is hot and push up the release of the next book to somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  I was flattered by this, as it is a major vote of confidence in my trilogy.  Given that the final edits are complete on the manuscript and I am about to send the book off to be formatted, once we have a cover, the book will be ready to go.  So for now, it looks like we might have an early December release, just in time for Christmas!  I feel all retail-y and stuff with having the book ready by then!

It is also about time that I revealed the name to the sequel to the second book in the trilogy, since I haven’t officially mentioned it before.  Heck, I can reveal the title of the third book as well, while I am at it.  Again, the entire trilogy is already written, so while I currently don’t have a firm date for the third book’s release (because we bumped up the second book’s release date), but my guess is that it will be in late spring of 2011, best estimate.

So here they are.  The second book will be entitled:  Into The Dark and the third book will be called Beyond The Dark.  The artwork for all three covers is being done by the incredible Philip R. Rogers and the second and third cover will retain the same feel as the first one, though I am not exactly sure what either will look like.  I think I will know pretty soon about the second cover-at least a rough sketch, and I am excited about checking that out.  Philip’s work is awesome and if you ever need an artist, check out his work at philipr.deviantart.com/gallery/.

Okay, so here is the back cover description for Into The Dark:

Six weeks ago, the mysterious virus came out of nowhere and engulfed the world.  Everyone infected seemed to die … then rise again.

Jeff Blaine did his best to hold his family together and to protect them from the horrors scratching at their door, but in the end, they were ripped away from him like everything else that ever mattered.

Lost and alone, Jeff decided his only option was to destroy as many of the monsters that stole his life away before they destroy him as well.  But when he discovers Megan, George, and Jason, three other survivors not interested in giving up just yet, he reluctantly accepts that there might still be a reason to fight and live to see another day.

Traveling through the blasted landscape their world has become, the quartet discovers that the living dead aren’t the only danger with which they must cope.  Even other survivors who promise safety and security from the hordes of ghouls roaming the wastelands will test loyalties and their faith in humankind.

Jeff and his small band of newfound friends must forge a semblance of life in the newly blighted world.  And they will have only the light of their own humanity by which to navigate as everything around them descends into the dark.

Again, the book should be released sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  I am already getting excited about it!


Great review for Eye Witness: Zombie

If you are looking to check out a great zombie anthology, there are plenty I could recommend.  I am excited about the fact that Eye Witness: Zombie got a detailed review over at Zombiephile that talks about each story in detail that is included within its pages.  Terrific review and I am proud to be a part of this one.  Check it out over at:  http://www.zombiephiles.com/zombies-ate-my-brains/may-december-publications-releases-new-zombie-anthology-eye-witness-zombie


Book Signing this weekend in Dayton!

It is great to have friends who are willing to let you tag along with them!  I get the opportunity to be at the Halloween Express up in Dayton, Ohio this Saturday with my good friend Ben Rogers, thanks to Beth LaFond, his publicist, who always sees if I am available for anything they plan in the area.   Many thanks to Beth and Ben for allowing me to take part in this event.

We will be selling and signing copies of our books.  I have reviewed Ben’s Faith and the Undead here on my blog not so long ago, so check that out, and if you live in the Dayton/Cincinnati area and haven’t had the chance to pick up a copy of either Ben’s book or mine, stop by!  Even if you have already and want to get us to sign your copy, we would love to do so.  It should be a lot of fun, so check it out!

Here is the posting that Halloween Express made for this event on their Facebook page:

Halloween Express/Dayton/Columbus Benjamin Rogers, author of “Faith and the Undead” and Patrick D’Orazio author of “Comes the Dark” will be at our Beavercreek location on Saturday October 16th for book signings. 2750 suite B. N. Fairfield Rd. Beavercreek Ohio 45431

So definitely check it out!  We will be there officially from 11-4, but ya never know, we might just stick around after that