Monday 30 March 2015

Fear the Walking Dead

The title of The Walking Dead companion series was announced this past Friday to many boos and hisses. The title is Fear the Walking Dead, and has suggested forty-three alternate titles that would have been better. (The working title of the new show had in fact been Cobalt, as I indicated in an earlier post.)

The companion series has already been signed up for two seasons and will start airing in late summer 2015.

If you're a Walking Dead fan, you'll probably be more concerned with the quality of the scripts and acting in the new series and less with its title. I'm probably not the only one who thinks the quality of the scripts in the original series has deteriorated since the show first aired. In my opinion, the show has become so focused on "survival of the fittest" themes that the larger issues of coping with widespread devastation while maintaining a semblance of humanity and attempting to rebuild society seem to have gone by the wayside.

And speaking of survival of the fittest, am I the only one who thinks that very strong characters have been eliminated from the show while very weak characters remain? (I won't name names, but I'm sure you can single out the ones.)

All said, I'm still looking forward to the new series, mainly because it will be a chance at a fresh start.

Monday 23 March 2015

Themes of the 2015 World Horror Convention

This is the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Wold Horror Convention to be held on May 7-10 in Atlantic, Georgia. These are the seven themes of the 2015 event:
  • The Weird South:  "Why does the South provide such a rich playground for authors and filmmakers exploring the darker side of humanity?" 
  • Pushing the Diaspora Darkly: Atlantic was the city at the centre of the civil rights movement. The convention will look at "diversity and an emerging global view of horror as it moves into the 21st century with a new generation of writers from different cultural backgrounds." 
  • Terrifying Tropes and Deadly Definitions: "Classic monsters will still get their due, but we’ll be looking for new angles to challenge and inspire, as well as exploring sub-genre definitions and cross-pollination with other genres."
  • YA Rocks: Why is horror so popular for young adults? 
  • The State of Horror, 1991: A look back at the founding of the WHC and the hottest horror topics and authors at that time.
  • The Art of Fear: An examination of the "latest trends in horror art, comics, artist spotlights, the business of art, and other media-related programming."
  • The Business of Horror: How "to maximize the latest developments in marketing and publishing."
For more information, please visit and

Monday 16 March 2015

More New Spring Horror Releases

As promised in last week's post, here are some other horror books to look forward to:


ellendatlow-thedollcollectionEllen Datlow (ed.) – The Doll Collection 

An illustrated anthology featuring all-original dark tales of dolls from bestselling and award-winning authors, compiled by one of the top editors in the field. Among the writers featured are
Joyce Carol Oates, Seanan McGuire, Carrie Vaughn, Pat Cadigan, Tim Lebbon, Richard Kadrey, Genevieve Valentine, and Jeffrey Ford.


joehillJoe Hill – The Fireman

In a world overtaken by a deadly and dramatic new virus, the protagonist is determined to live long enough to deliver her baby. But when it only takes a spark to start a deadly blaze, she’s going to need some help from the mysterious fireman....


sarahlotz-dayfourSarah Lotz – Day Four

Four days into a five-day singles cruise on the Gulf of Mexico, the aging ship Beautiful Dreamer stops dead in the water. With no electricity and no cellular signals, the passengers and crew have no way to call for help. But everyone is certain that rescue teams will come looking for them soon. All they have to do is wait.
That is, until the toilets stop working and the food begins to run out. When the body of a woman is discovered in her cabin the passengers start to panic. There’s a murderer on board the Beautiful Dreamer… and maybe something worse.


christophergolden-tinmenChristopher Golden – Tin Men

Economies are collapsing, environmental disasters are widespread, and war is the backdrop to life. In response the military has developed a force of elite soldiers to keep the peace. A force like nothing seen before … code-named Tin Man, soldiers are virtually transported to inhabit robot frames in war-torn countries.

paultrembly-aheadfullofghostsPaul Tremblay – A Head Full of Ghosts 

The lives of a normal suburban New England family are torn apart when the fourteen-year-old daughter begins to display signs of acute schizophrenia. To her parents’ despair, the doctors are unable to stop her descent into madness. As their stable home devolves into a house of horrors, they reluctantly turn to a local Catholic priest for help....

Thanks to A Fantastical Librarian blog for the selection of new horror books. If you are interested in new science fiction releases, there are also many listed on this site.

Monday 9 March 2015

Upcoming Horror Fiction

 Here are some upcoming horror novels for spring and summer that you might like to check out.

Within These Walls by Ania Ahlborn - This supernatural thriller questions how far an individual would go for success, and what  he would be capable of if the promise of forever was real. (Release Date: April 21)

Also by the same author, Brother, the tale of a teenager trying to break free of his family's deeply-disturbing traditions that involve missing young girls and screams in the night. (Release Date: September 8).
Deep in the heart of Appalachia stands a crooked farmhouse miles from any road. The Morrows keep to themselves, and it’s served them well so far. When girls go missing off the side of the highway, the cops don’t knock on their door. Which is a good thing, seeing as to what’s buried in the Morrows’ backyard.

But nineteen-year-old Michael Morrow isn’t like the rest of his family. He doesn’t take pleasure in the screams that echo through the trees. Michael pines for normalcy, and he’s sure that someday he’ll see the world beyond West Virginia. - See more at:

Dawn of the Dead by George A. Romero and Susanna Sparrow - This novel is based on the cult movie classic of the same name and is being re-issued with an introduction by Simon Pegg. Zombies have overpowered the living and ravaged the world. Society has collapsed as humans race to save themselves. There are four survivors with nowhere to hide who must face a final showdown with these monsters. (Release Date: June 2)

[Adapted from a post on The Baryon Review (Barry R. Hunter) and supplemented by book descriptions from Barnes & Noble]

Stay tuned for more new releases next week!:

Monday 2 March 2015

Bram Stoker Award® Nominees

In case you missed it, the Horror Writers Association announced the final ballot results for the Bram Stoker Awards® on February 24:

Superior Achievement in a Novel
Craig DiLouie – Suffer the Children (Gallery Books of Simon & Schuster)
Patrick Freivald – Jade Sky (JournalStone)
Chuck Palahniuk – Beautiful You (Jonathan Cape, Vintage/Penguin Random House UK)
Christopher Rice – The Vines (47North)
Steve Rasnic Tem – Blood Kin (Solaris Books)

Superior Achievement in a First Novel
Maria Alexander – Mr. Wicker (Raw Dog Screaming Press)
J.D. Barker – Forsaken (Hampton Creek Press)
David Cronenberg – Consumed (Scribner)
Michael Knost – Return of the Mothman (Woodland Press)
Josh Malerman – Bird Box (Harper Collins)

Superior Achievement in a Young Adult Novel
Jake Bible – Intentional Haunting (Permuted Press)
John Dixon – Phoenix Island (Simon & Schuster/Gallery Books)
Kami Garcia – Unmarked (The Legion Series Book 2) (Little Brown Books for Young Readers)
Tonya Hurley – Passionaries (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
Peter Adam Salomon – All Those Broken Angels (Flux)

Superior Achievement in a Graphic Novel
Emily Carroll – Through the Woods (Margaret K. McElderry Books)
Joe Hill – Locke and Key, Vol. 6 (IDW Publishing)
Joe R. Lansdale and Daniele Serra – I Tell You It’s Love (Short, Scary Tales Publications)
Jonathan Maberry – Bad Blood (Dark Horse Books)
Paul Tobin – The Witcher (Dark Horse Books)

Superior Achievement in Long Fiction
Taylor Grant – “The Infected” (Cemetery Dance #71) (Cemetery Dance)
Eric J. Guignard – “Dreams of a Little Suicide” (Hell Comes to Hollywood II: Twenty-Two More Tales of Tinseltown Terror (Volume 2)) (Big Time Books)
Joe R. Lansdale – “Fishing for Dinosaurs” (Limbus, Inc., Book II) (JournalStone)
Jonathan Maberry – “Three Guys Walk into a Bar” (Limbus, Inc., Book II) (JournalStone)
Joe McKinney – “Lost and Found” (Limbus, Inc., Book II) (JournalStone)

Superior Achievement in Short Fiction
Hal Bodner – “Hot Tub” (Hell Comes to Hollywood II: Twenty-Two More Tales of Tinseltown Terror (Volume 2)) (Big Time Books)
Sydney Leigh – “Baby’s Breath” (Bugs: Tales That Slither, Creep, and Crawl) (Great Old Ones Publishing)
Usman T. Malik – “The Vaporization Enthalpy of a Peculiar Pakistani Family” (Qualia Nous) (Written Backwards)
Rena Mason – “Ruminations” (Qualia Nous) (Written Backwards)
John Palisano – “Splinterette” (Widowmakers: A Benefit Anthology of Dark Fiction) (Widowmaker Press)
Damien Angelica Walters – “The Floating Girls: A Documentary” (Jamais Vu, Issue Three) (Post Mortem Press)

Superior Achievement in a Screenplay
Scott M. Gimple – The Walking Dead: “The Grove”, episode 4:14 (AMC)
Jennifer Kent – The Babadook (Causeway Films)
John Logan – Penny Dreadful: “Séance” (Desert Wolf Productions/Neal Street Productions)
Steven Moffat – Doctor Who: “Listen” (British Broadcasting Corporation)
James Wong – American Horror Story: Coven: “The Magical Delights of Stevie Nicks” (FX Network)

Superior Achievement in an Anthology
Michael Bailey – Qualia Nous (Written Backwards)
Jason V Brock – A Darke Phantastique (Cycatrix Press)
Ellen Datlow – Fearful Symmetries (ChiZine Publications)
Chuck Palahniuk, Richard Thomas, and Dennis Widmyer – Burnt Tongues (Medallion Press)
Brett J. Talley – Limbus, Inc., Book II (JournalStone)

Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection
Stephen Graham Jones – After the People Lights Have Gone Off (Dark House Press)
John R. Little – Little by Little (Bad Moon Books)
Helen Marshall – Gifts for the One Who Comes After (ChiZine Publications)
Lucy Snyder – Soft Apocalypses (Raw Dog Screaming Press)
John F.D. Taff – The End in All Beginnings (Grey Matter Press)

Superior Achievement in Non-Fiction
Jason V Brock – Disorders of Magnitude (Rowman & Littlefield)
S.T. Joshi – Lovecraft and a World in Transition (Hippocampus Press)
Leslie S. Klinger – The New Annotated H.P. Lovecraft (Liveright Publishing Corp., a division of W.W. Norton & Co.)
Joe Mynhardt and Emma Audsley – Horror 101: The Way Forward (Crystal Lake Publishing)
Lucy Snyder – Shooting Yourself in the Head For Fun and Profit: A Writer’s Survival Guide (Post Mortem Press)

Superior Achievement in a Poetry Collection
Robert Payne Cabeen – Fearworms: Selected Poems (Fanboy Comics)
Corrinne De Winter and Alessandro Manzetti – Venus Intervention (Kipple Officina Libraria)
Tom Piccirilli – Forgiving Judas (Crossroad Press)
Marge Simon and Mary Turzillo – Sweet Poison (Dark Renaissance Books)
Stephanie Wytovich – Mourning Jewelry (Raw Dog Screaming Press)

The presentation of the Bram Stoker Awards® will occur during the World Horror Convention in Atlanta, Georgia, on the evening of Saturday, May 9, 2015. Tickets to the banquet and the convention are on sale to the public at The awards presentation will also be live-streamed online.