“There’s a time to live and a time to die
When it’s time to meet the maker
There’s a time to live, but isn’t it strange
As soon as you’re born you’re dying”
Bruce Dickinson-Iron Maiden Clairvoyant 1988
A true milestone for any budding author is to pen a tale that forces the reader to re-evaluate their own life and learn something about himself. Granted we all embark upon literary journeys for an assortment of reasons as unique to the aspiring individual itself. Without doubt a crowning achievement is to make our tales noticed and ultimately memorable.
Having the esteemed honor to review last year’s remarkable collection: “Warped Words For Twisted Minds,” One can certainly appreciate my maniacal enthusiasm, tearing through our latest volume of demented madness. Chocked full of impressive authors that consistently push the barriers of reality and fear as we know it, how could it go wrong? And then the unspeakable transpired. This was not your run of the mill, sub-standard and collection of terror tales. No this compilation boasted a menu vast in variety for every appetite. Fantasy, paranormal, young adult submissions cascaded the pages in subgenre rain of enchantment. Then from page one the words swirled in and out of focus before me, taunting me: science fiction.
I’ll first go on record as stating I have not a discrimination for Sci-Fi fans or even its Highly imaginative creators. My abrasions with science fiction come from a place of personal limitation and limited comprehension. Riddled with foreign jargon, lingo and self-indulgent syntax I get lost within a science fictional tale faster than Russell Brand at a clothing beach. Previous endeavors with Star Wars and Star Trek novels had crippled
me with perplexed ignorance and lack of understanding. Scores of pages were turned, words scanned with an epiphany that not a single thought had been absorbed in three consecutive chapters. Frustrated with my borders and limitations I buried futuristic folklore once and for all.
Now presented with the dilemma of reviewing material for a publishing house I hold in the highest of regard and respect I had no other alternative than to embrace my intimidation.
Plunging into LaRue’s prize winning Dead Already, Golden’s Acapulco Blue, it dawned upon me. These stories are phenomenal! They weren’t subservient, pretentious or self indulgent at all. In fact their elements of rising tension, whimsical and witty characters and empathetic conflict truly mirror that of any horror based genre.
I especially appreciate the opportunity to expand my preferred reading pallet. This collection of tales will always be memorable to me for expanding my imagination.
Each story holds a common theme uniting all genres as one. Of course there is the countdown to expiration alluded to in the book’s cover and a symbolic lock of hair. To me the hair embodies life itself, a paradox of the impending doom to come for each of our protagonists. Watch for it in each tale as it will surely create a hair raising experience.
A wonderful, eye opening read and thank you for humbling this cynical critic.
DEAD ALREADY: (Sci Fi) By John LaRue-an intergalactic panic ensues as two astronauts grapple with survival.
GODFORSAKEN: (Horror) By Brad Carpenter-Ronald Scanlan’s cinematic expertise is exhumed to unlock the origins of a mysterious director.
ACAPULCO BLUE: (Sci-Fi) By Bruce Golden-125 year old great grandfather Glcorde, Amber and Shon conspire to thwart the stifling political prowess of a futuristic civilization.
THE WRITER: (Horror) By Jeffrey Wilson- Author Brad Reynolds learns his talent for the macabre is stranger than fiction.
AN EYE FOR AN EYE: (Horror) By Brett J. Talley-Lewis is buried alive in a redemption tactic for the unspeakable horrors he had fought to leave behind.
HOUSE OF ROSES: (Horror) By Jasmine Cabanaw-Kevin and Justine realize engagements clearly are not for everybody.
CITY OF FIRE: (Sci-Fi) By Timothy Miller-Colton and Lina race against time to flee from the hellacious villa.
THE GLADE (Fantasy) By Peter Orr-Cain unearths a lesson in salvation and resurrection
BABY GIRL (Paranormal) By: Nu Yang-Julia battles Trich with spells, curses and
Supernatural powers to release her abducted father.
UNINVITED: (Young adult) By: JG Faherty-Bev Pietro and Kit Bannon discover a
porthole from one galaxy through their personal computer.
MACK AND STRETCH SAVE THE EARTH (Young Adult) By: David Pelmutter-
Two adolescent girls thwart an alien invasion.
IN THE SHADOW OF THE BANYAN TREE: (Honorable Mention) By: Jennifer
Phillps-A quadriplegic reflects on a life lost in ruin.
Book Review: 90 Minutes to Live – Editors Joel Kirkpatrick, Bill Patterson