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Thursday, 3 December 2015

Review: N is for Nightmare

N is for Nightmare N is for Nightmare by Iain Rob Wright
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Like all of the a-z stories. This was a fun quick read.
These stories always have a bit of a goosebumps feel to them, I like it.
Truth be told I did guess the outcome of this story almost immediately, having said that, the tension building was still very good and it gave off a good creepy vibe.

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Review: Darkness, Tell Us

Darkness, Tell Us Darkness, Tell Us by Richard Laymon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a great read. This book had me gripped from the very beginning. Who doesn't like a creepy story with a ouija board? But this was more than just a ghost story, it had a pretty epic game of cat and mouse and the brutal back story really made you feel for the characters.
Great story, definitely check it out.

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Monday, 26 October 2015

Exciting News

I am pleased to announce that I have signed with literary agent Keith Chawgo. This is a big step for me, but after talks with Keith, I have decided this is the best move for me going forward. Keith will be representing me for my future work and also be looking into my back catalogue with the possibility of some TV Shows/movies based on the likes of DADDYS GIRL & FAMILY MAN.

Keith has worked on some very big projects including the HOSTEL movies and TV shows such as SUPERNATURAL & THE X FILES. So I think that I will be in pretty good hands.

So what does this mean for me? Well, a lot more writing for a start. I will be pushing myself a lot harder now to keep Keith as busy as possible. As I said, this is a big step for me, but I am ready to put everything into it to make sure it is the right step.

Exciting times ahead. Watch this space.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Review: Cine

Cine Cine by Stuart Keane
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

That was a cracking read. Keane has a talent for thinking up some pretty unique things.
The story itself is solid, it's a good story.
But let's be honest. What did you come here for? The violence, the blood and gore.
This book is full of it. It's brutal! i've read and seen some pretty extreme horror.
If this book was to go to screen then half of it would have to be censored out.
If you think you can handle it, give it a try. You'll love it.

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Sunday, 13 September 2015

Review: Ravenous: Car Nex Collection Book One

Ravenous: Car Nex Collection Book One Ravenous: Car Nex Collection Book One by Terry M. West
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a great collection of stories. It's about time that someone came up with something original. Car Nex is a completely new monster, it's brutal and violent. It's great!

All of the stories are completely unique, some have a bit of comedy, some give you quite a bit to think about, but overall this is a great collection and finally some originality hitting the scene. Well worth checking out

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Friday, 4 September 2015

Review: Brutality

Brutality Brutality by Ian Woodhead
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this story a lot. With a name like "Brutality" I was expecting the normal mindless violence (which is good, I like that) but this story was far more in depth. brutality is the name of the town and its residents are different from other people. Each one has its own dark streak.
This leads on to a very in depth and dark story. The only reason I gave this four stars and not five is because I felt like it could have gone further. Ian Woodhead has created a very unique universe with this story and I think the potential is massive.
I really hope that there is going to be more.

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Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Review: Whispers - Volume 1: A Collection

Whispers - Volume 1: A Collection Whispers - Volume 1: A Collection by Stuart Keane
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a great collection. It's very hard to find a book of short stories in which every single one is a good, solid story. I really enjoyed all of these. They say that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover. With this one you most certainly should! Such a fantastic cover, just look at it. Well the content is equally as good.

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Review: Waiting For The Bee Stings

Waiting For The Bee Stings Waiting For The Bee Stings by Calvin Wade
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another cracking read from Wade.
I keep saying that these are not usually the sort of books I read, but after enjoying another one so much I think Wade is starting to make me change my mind.
This is the third book I've read from him, I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. It made a great holiday read. Now I look forward to the next one.

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Friday, 28 August 2015

Review: Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Invasion of the Body Snatchers Invasion of the Body Snatchers by Jack Finney
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

That was a great read. I've seen lots of the movie adaptations so I had an idea of what was going to happen anyway, but that didn't take anything away from the story.
I was concerned that the book was going to feel dated, with it being written in 1955. It's not. This guy was well ahead of his time! Reading this felt the same as reading something written now a days.
Really good read. I know Finney hasn't written much more than this but I will be taking a look at his other stuff.

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Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Review: Seeing Evil

Seeing Evil Seeing Evil by Jason Parent
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow! That was just brilliant!
Every single chapter straight from the very beginning had me gripped. I'm exhausted today because I stayed up late last night reading because I just didn't want to put it down.
I would go as far as to say this is probably the best book I've read so far this year. Absolutely loved it.

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Monday, 24 August 2015

Review: Dreamworld: Extreme Horror

Dreamworld: Extreme Horror Dreamworld: Extreme Horror by Sam West
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked this story. It felt like an adult version of a goosebumps story. The death scenes were pretty brutal and fun, but then all of a sudden it seemed to be rushed to the end.
Overall three stars, but if the end had been a little bit better it would have been four.

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Sunday, 23 August 2015

Review: ASHES: A novella of horror, gore and cannibalism

ASHES: A novella of horror, gore and cannibalism ASHES: A novella of horror, gore and cannibalism by Matt Shaw
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Don't you just love happy endings?

I really enjoyed that book. It did exactly what it said it would do in the introduction.
A full on old school cannibal horror story.
You won't be disappointed

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Saturday, 22 August 2015

Review: All or Nothing

All or Nothing All or Nothing by Stuart Keane
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

That was bloody brilliant! It kept me gripped for the entire read. If you too "the running man" "saw" and "battle royale" and mashed them together, this is what you would get.
Bloody, violent & gripping. Definitely recommend

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Sunday, 16 August 2015

Review: Dead Harvest

Dead Harvest Dead Harvest by Mark Parker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a great collection of stories. Probably one of the best I've read. Will all collections you will have some stories you like and some that you don't
This collection had some stories that I thought were so good they could probably be listed on their own.
I have to metion Hodmedod by Stuart Keane & Nails by Jeff Strand. Those two in particular were just fantastic.

Just go check it out. It's a massive collection and the stories are great.

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Saturday, 15 August 2015

Review: Whisper

Whisper Whisper by Michael Bray
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a cracking read. Had an eery feel to it throughout the whole book. I really enjoyed it and I will be checking out the other books in the trilogy.
My only complaint is that in parts it was a little bit slow, that's why I gave it 4 stars and not 5.
Overall, a great read and a good old school ghostly tale.

Definitely recommend.

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Saturday, 1 August 2015

Review: House of Reckoning

House of Reckoning House of Reckoning by John Saul
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I listened to the audiobook of this, the performance itself was very good, no complaints here.
This story was quite good. I wouldn't say it's anything fantastic, but it's was enjoyable.
It had its brutal parts which I enjoyed and I also love a good dose of karma so the ending pleased me as well.

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Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Review: The Scarlet Gospels

The Scarlet Gospels The Scarlet Gospels by Clive Barker
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Sorry to say but DNF.
I was really, really looking forward to this, but it just didn't do it for me.
I got to page 100 and still felt quite bored. Maybe some hardcore Barker fans will enjoy it but for me this was a bit of a flop.

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Monday, 13 July 2015

Review - Finders Keepers by Stephen King

The last hundred or so pages of this book were really good. So good that I was up reading until 2am! I just didn't want to stop.
However, getting the that last hundred pages was a really big struggle. I think had it been another writer, or if I hadn't already read the previous book in the trilogy I may have given up.
I'm glad I stuck through it because the ending really was good, but it was a looong journey getting there. 
Just too much unecessary filler which seems to be occupying more and more of Kings books lately.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Review - LONDON'S BLEEDING by Matthew Cash & Matthew Hickman

Cash & Hickman certainly have a thing for torturing people. 
It's quite frightening really at how much they have obviously thought about this.
I don't know who wrote which bits, but I thoroughly enjoyed this story.
I actually cringed and flinched at some parts so job well done!

Review - WHY CAN'T I BE YOU? by Matthew Cash

That was short and sweet (no pun intended).
This was a fun quick story. Brutal, but fun. Definitely unique. One way to kill someone is with their favourite addiction.
Good read, I enjoyed it. I'll be checking out more from Mr Cash.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Review: M is for Matty Bob by Iain Rob Wright

That was both terrifying and really funny at the same time. Thoroughly enjoyed it! Then I enjoyed the alternate version just as much. Reading them back to back made the story even more funny.
Knowing matty Bob personally, I could actually see him doing half of this stuff.
He's one of the reasons I'm holding myself back as a writer. I don't want him to become infatuated with me.

Seriously though. Check it out,it's a great laugh

Monday, 22 June 2015

Review: L is for Lamia by Iain Rob Wright

That was brilliant. Each one of these are getting better as the collection goes on.
This one was fast paced and brutal! It felt like I was only reading it for about five minutes. It had me hooked straight away. Definitely recommend.

Review: The Auld Mither by William Meikle

I really enjoyed the last 20% or so of this story. That was scary and fast pace, but getting there was a bit of a struggle. I felt a little bit bored.
I'll be checking more out from the author as the bits I enjoyed, I really enjoyed! 
The rest was just a bit too dull for me I'm afraid.

Friday, 19 June 2015

Review: K is for Klutz by Iain Rob Wright

Definitely the best one in the series so far. Just brilliant, it had me gripped from the beginning. You knew what was going to happen, it was just a case of when. I think this short could actually be made into a very, very good movie

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Review: Nunslinger - Book 1 by Stark Holborn

This was ok, but I'm definitely glad that I have the complete collection and not just this book as a stand alone.
It's done enough to make me want to carry on to the second book. But as a stand alone, it's just not good enough.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Review: J is for Jaws by Iain Rob Wright

Another cracker in the A-Z series.
These quick fun stories just seem to be getting better as they go along.
I was almost expecting this one to be a bit cheesy. Oh Jaws, here we go. But I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. It's unique and an enjoyable read.

Review: Aftertaste by Kyle M Scott

This was a great story. It had me cringing almost from the off.
It had a quite clever way of showing just how horrible the human race can be with just a little push.
It's violent, it's gory, it's gross.

Definitely worth a read.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Review: A Good and Useful Hurt by Aric Davis

That was really, really good!
I listened to the audiobook for this, it actually came free with the Kindle Unlimited download.
This is a brilliant read. The story itself is very unique and really quite gripping.
It had me from the start and didn't let go till the end.

Well worth a read, check it out.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Review: I is for Ice by Iain Rob Wright

I enjoyed that story. Another great addition to the A-Z collection.
At one point I thought I had guessed the ending, I sort of came close, but then another twist through me off completely.
Definitely worth a look. Go read!

You can find this book here Amazon UK or Amazon US

All reviews can be found at

Friday, 29 May 2015

Review: CAR NEX by Terry M West

I enjoyed that story.
It was short and quick paced. A good introduction to the Carnex series.
I'll be checking out the others. Definitely

You can download this book from Amazon UK or Amazon USA

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Review: H is for Hell by Iain Rob Wright

That was definitely my favourite out of the collection so far!
Reminded me a bit of a short story from creepshow. Not going to go into details as I don't want to ruin anything.
Very good, check it out

You can download this book from Amazon UK & Amazon US

All reviews can be found at

Monday, 25 May 2015

Exclusive Fans of Modern Horror - Author Interview - Andrew Lennon - Interviewed by Matt Hickman

So, this week on the fans of modern horror page, we bring you another exclusive interview with me and fairly new, up and coming author, and a good friend of mine. I take pleasure in introducing Mr Andrew Lennon.

So, welcome. First off, Andrew or Andy?

The standard, please introduce yourself, tell us where you live, work, family etc. please include anything that you feel we need to know.

Ok, well my "Author" name is Andrew, but being honest I don't really like my name. Most people tend to call me Andy. Only my Mum and Dad call me Andrew. I live in Runcorn in the North West of England, just outside of Liverpool. 
As you've probably guessed I am a big fan of horror. But until about the age of 25 I had only ever been interested in horror movies. Books had never really interested me. Once I started getting into them, I really, really enjoyed them. My wife is a very avid reader and has a huge Stephen King collection so I guess I owe it to her for pushing me in the right direction. 
I've always had quite a vivid imagination, but the more I was reading, the more ideas for stories started to pop into my head. So I thought I would give it a shot myself. My wife was really encouraging, I think she was actually more excited about it than I was to start. I think that without her I would probably still be left with a few scribbled notes for an idea somewhere lying around the house.
I'm still very new to this game, but I feel so far that the feedback I have received has been very good so I like to think that I'm doing something right. 
You can follow more updates on both books I'm reading and books I'm writing at my blog

How would you explain your writing style to a potential reader?

I like to think of my writing style as quite simple. I personally am not a fan of over descriptive books. I think sometimes the story can be lost in too much detail. To me the beauty if books is that you make them grow and you picture them they way you want it to be. So if I feel description is needed then I will give it. If it's not necessary then I try and stick to the story to keep it flowing smoothly. You don't need to me to tell you that the protagonist has green wallpaper with purple spots. You will picture the surroundings yourself based on the characters and the events happening at the time. No amount of writing will beat the power of your own mind.

What made you first think that you wanted to start writing books?

Like I said, I have always had a pretty vivid imagination. The push that actually made me think "hey I wanna give this a go" was actually two books. The Summer I Died by Ryan C Thomas, which is a fantastic book. If you haven't read it then I highly recommend it. While reading that, there were certain things that happened which just made me think. "If I wrote something like this then I'd do that to the guy and I'd to this to the victim."
The second book was Forever is Over by Calvin Wade. I actually heard about this book from one of my old school teachers. It turns out that Calvin went to my old school and the book was based in Ormskirk where I grew up. These reasons alone made me try the book. It's completely different to anything I usually read, but it was fantastic. I really enjoyed it. I ended up finding Calvin through mutual friends on Facebook and asked him for advice and giving it a go myself. He was really helpful, he told me about createspace & kdp etc. It really just gave me the push I needed to get going.

What is your main style / genre. And would you ever consider writing in others?

My main style is definitely horror/thriller. I have written one short story Time which held the number 1 spot for free short stories on Amazon USA for quite a while. Time is more of a romance story, but it still has that scary element in there. It's just more of a "real life scare".
I think I'll probably write something away from horror again at some point in the future, but until the idea for the story enters my head then I couldn't say it's a definite.

What was the last book that you read?

The last book I "read" was Ratings Game by Ryan C Thomas, but I've also just finished SickER B*stards by Matt Shaw. Very good by the way.

What will be the next?

Right now I'm reading Angel Manor by Chantal Noordeloos & a short story collection called Dead Harvest. I've had a lot on lately so I'm a lot slower than I'd like getting through them, but when I finally finish I think my next will be Finders Keepers by Stephen King. I think that's actually due out next week?

Judging by your Facebook statuses, you do like to watch a good horror movie. Can you elaborate on what ticks the boxes for you?

I love pretty much all horror movies being honest. Being scary doesn't matter too much because I can't remember any movies that actually scared me. I do prefer horror films with a good story. A good ghost story is always fun. I'm also a big fan of the slasher movies, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street etc. When I'm feeling tired I like to watch some cheesy horror movies. The good old fashioned take your brain out to watch this and just forget about everything for a while. These movies are usually so poorly acted and cheesy that I'm left to watch them alone in my room.

You let me have an early read of your upcoming release "Keith", could you tell us a little about what readers can expect from the book?

I'd like to think I've taken a bit of a step up with Keith. I personally think that it's surpassed anything I've written previously and I hope that readers will think the same. It's a dark story and it's quite psychological. Hopefully it will give people something to think about while reading.

The main character in Keith. John has a few issues with his inner demons. You seem to capture these inner struggles "extremely" well. Is there something that you would like to confess?

Yes I've got inner demons. But I think if anyone tells you they haven't then they're lying. The difference is how you handle those demons. Some people suppress them, some people can't do it and it take over their life.

Keith is available to pre order right now from here UK or US 

Your book, a life to waste has just had a re release. Could you tell us a little about that?

I think it's safe to say that when I originally released A Life to Waste I was a little bit naive. I thought that I could do all the proof reading/editing etc myself. Oh how I was wrong. While feedback for the story in general was usually positive. One thing that constantly arose were the errors in the book. It got to the point that I was worried people were going to disregard me and any of my future works purely because of these mistakes. 
So I decided to step and do it properly. I hired a professional editor to go through it and "fix" it for me. I have to say that the end result is massively superior to the original and the feedback already tells that story too. I will definitely be doing it the right way and using proper editors for all my future works. You can find the new updated A Life to Waste here UK or US

There is a part of that book towards the end that is really quite disturbing. Where did the inspiration for the story come from?

It's hard to say one thing in particular. I think usually ideas come from lots of different things blended together to create a new monster. If I were to reel off a few movies like Silence of the Lambs, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Human Centipede. Start merging them together and you'll probably start visualising the scene in my book you're talking about.

Another short story of yours i have read, "daddy's girl" really showcases the extreme end of your writing ability. Could you tell people a little about this story?

I really had a lot of fun writing that story. I'm hoping it will be appearing in an upcoming anthology but I've not received any feedback yet so I won't name that right now. 
This story was one of the first I actually did any real research for. I don't want to give anyway any spoilers but I can tell you that when you read this story you will be cringing with some of the torture methods that I thought up.

You have many fingers in many pies at the moment in the form of anthology work. What do you having going where, and when?

Very exciting times right now for me when it comes to anthologies. I struggle with patience so it's killing me waiting for them to come out. I have "Fast Food" which will be appearing in "Under the Bridge" a Troll anthology by J Ellington Ashton Press. I have "Throw a Punch" appearing in "Growing Pains" by Sinister Saints. "Twins" appearing in "Kids" by Dark Chapter Press. Plus one which I'm especially proud of is "Meet Victor" which will be appearing along with my daughters story "Ember's Game" in the anthology "JEApers Creepers" Which will be a collection of horror stories for children. I'm really looking forward to being published in the same book as my daughter.

Are you currently working on anything new. Or taking a short breather after writing Keith?

I've got a notebook scribbled full of potential stories right now. I'm not 100% sure which is going to be the next one, but I'm going to starting work on one of them tomorrow.

I found your book Family Man a disturbing little number. How did that come about?

That book was originally planned to be a far longer story. I found while writing it though that it was losing it's way a bit. I thought the beginning was really good but would be wasted in a story that had no direction. I was trying to figure out a way to keep it fresh and to shock people. I think, without giving any spoilers. If you read it then the ending will certainly have an impact on you.

If you could write a book with absolutely anyone. Who would you choose and why?

No brainer, Stephen King. The guy is definitely the best writer to grace my lifetime at least. I'd argue possibly the best writer of all time. Take that, Dickens!

The Externals. Now I enjoyed this story, but it seems to have had a mixed response on Amazon. Do you have any ideas why?

Ah well that story has temporarily been pulled from Amazon because it's going to be appearing in an upcoming anthology named "Supernatural" by Horrified Press. 
The Externals is completely different from anything I've written before. I was reading a lot of Lovecraft at the time and I think you can feel that influence come across. As I stated earlier, I think that my writing style is quite simple and I think that's what people who read my work like about it. The Externals couldn't have been further away from that. I used a hell of a lot of description and I think the story itself almost comes across like a sort of art form. It'll either get you and you'll love it, or it won't and you'll hate it,  but it was fun to try at the time.

On this very page, you have been known to overlook your own words? Are they forgotten as soon as they hit the page?

Yes definitely! I've had people on Goodreads quote my own work to me and I didn't even recognise it. I think while writing my hands just seem to take over and do what they want. I just have to hope that they actually wrote what I originally thought of and they haven't gone off and stuck a shopping list in the middle of my story.

I personally think that you are right on the turning point in your writing career. I hope that you continue with the ongoing success. At what point will you feel that you are "making it?"

My aim for writing is to have someone read my work and enjoy it so much that they recommend it to other people. I think if I got to the point that people had heard of me through word of mouth then that would be a massive achievement.

I travel a lot in my work. Lets say i am spending a night up north and you happen to be in the hotel having a drink. We get chatting about books, and I mention that I am just about to download a new one. How do you convince me to try one of yours?

Well I'm actually a bit shy in real life so I'd probably just mumble something about the fact that I'd written a book.
What I'd like to say I would do is tell you about the keys to the story, the psychological background, the violence, etc. and tell you to check out the reviews on amazon. That's why they're there at the end of the day, to guide readers.

Who are your biggest writing influences?

Stephen King, Ryan Thomas, Brian Keene and more recently I've been quite influenced by Iain Rob Wright and Matt Shaw. They're becoming sort of pioneers for the Self Publishing industry.

Do you do any other type of work, beta reading etc?

Not really, I do the odd beta read if someone asks me to, but other than that I just review books I've read. My reviews however are very short and to the point. I don't like writing reviews in which I re tell the whole story. I usually just state if I like the book or not and my reasons for that.

Where do you think you will be in twelve months time?

Well between anthologies and upcoming releases of my own books I think that by the end of this year I'll probably have my name printed in at least ten books. Hopefully with that increase in output I will have also gained a lot more readers as well. So hopefully, I'll be a bit further up on those Amazon charts at least.

Quickly, before we wrap up. Anybody that you would particularly like to mention? Writers, readers family etc.

Yes. As mentioned before my wife has been hugely encouraging for my writing and without her I wouldn't have completed my first story. 
Also, one thing I've learned is that the writing game does have a lot of nice people in it. I've been given very good advice and help from Matt Shaw, Iain Rob Wright, Jim Goforth and quite a few more. 
I also feel that Stuart Keane needs a personal mention because he's had to put up with me constantly pestering him with questions. He's got on me route for quite a few anthologies, plus two of my own he's helped me set up "A-Z" & "Edge of Darkness". He even made the cover for "Keith" for me. Stuart is definitely one of the busiest guys in this game. I think he's going to go far and I wish in all the luck in the world.

Lastly. Where can people get hold of you?

Facebook - Goodreads - Twitter - Blog

Andy. Its been a real pleasure talking to you. I hope you continue with the success of your writing moving forward. 

Next up, Tim Miller.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Review: SickER B*stards by Matt Shaw

I Really enjoyed that!

Firstly I would like to say that I did the audio book version of this that I was lucky to win in a recent competition. The only audio books I've read previously have been Librivox, so they're all I can compare it to. I am happy to say that the narration in this surpassed anything I've listened to before.

With regards to the story. The predecessor "Sick B*stards". Being honest I thought that book was just ok. I can see why other people liked it so much, but I'm not so easily shocked and for me the first in the series had more shock than story.

This story however was very, very good. It surpassed the first one by a long shot. It still had all of that shock factor (I actually cringed at the last ten minutes) but it also had a very good story line. It gave a very in depth back story in which we get to know the protagonist a lot better. I actually felt quite bad for him in parts.

Heed the warning. Do not read if you are easily disturbed. However if you like that sort of stuff. Then I'm sure you'll love this. I'm aware that there is a third in the series. A short story "Sickest B*stards" After reading this one I will definitely be checking that out.

All reviews can be found at

You can download this book from the following sites:

Amazon UK
Amazon USA

Friday, 15 May 2015

Exclusive Fans of Modern Horror - Author Interview - Stuart Keane - Interviewed by Matt Hickman

Anyone frequenting this page, or reads in the horror genre at least, will most likely have heard the name Stuart Keane. Those of you that have read his work will probably agree that he is an amazing talent. Others that have not had the chance as yet, it’s certainly a name that I would recommend adding to your reading list.
Stuart has several titles available through self - publishing, as well as a full length novel through J Ellington Ashton Press - All Or Nothing. In addition to this, he is a member of the Horror Writer’s Association and an Editor at Dark Chapter Press.
In an exclusive interview with me, on behalf of the Fans of Modern Horror page, I take absolute pleasure in giving you Mr Stuart Keane.

Right, we know your name. On the assumption that this the only information that we hold, please tell us a little about yourself. Be as thorough as you feel necessary.

Well, where to start. A lot about my journey to becoming an author can be found on my website, However, that’s such a dull answer to give in an interview…feel free to check the website though. Otherwise, I'm a guy who found books at an early age, fell in love with the magic and mystery of a book – after all, it's much better than watching a movie – and it soon became my dream. It took a few years to get there, but it happened eventually after a lot of persistence on my part. I also had a lot of support from family and friends.
Some stuff people might not know? I'm allergic to apples, I consume way too much caffeine – but it helps with the writing –, I'm very much a night owl (American friends, you know the time difference means squat to me lol), and…I see inspiration in everything. My brain works in funny ways like that.

We thank you so much for sparing your time to participate in this interview. In addition to the roles outlined in my introduction, you also hold down a full time job as a recruitment consultant. Is it safe to say that you are an extremely busy individual?

It's Fort Knox safe, yes. My normal day at the moment is 18 hours long. I get maybe 4-6 hours sleep a night and the rest is spent working the day job, writing, researching, generating ideas and, most recently, editing and reading peoples work. I take Saturdays off usually (the day anyway) to relax and recharge and spend time with my amazing wife. I have the odd evening off too, but very rarely.
I love being busy. For anyone out there who wonders what it takes to be an author, it's hard and it takes dedication. Writing is not a job you can do for a couple of hours a week, you need to be committed. I'm at the point now where if I don't write, I feel like I'm slacking off and I love that I'm disciplined in that way, it makes the job so much easier and enjoyable. 

A Question from Christina Cooper - Does your wife have any influence, or help you at the conceptual stages of a book, does she have any input into any potential material or edits? Does she read your work?

My wife, Leisyen, is my rock. I'll be honest, without her, I wouldn’t be doing this right now. She gave me the kick up the arse that made me start writing properly. I always knew I wanted to do it but when I started, I had no one telling me I could do it. I don't seek an ego boost from anyone, but writing a book without knowing if anyone will read it is a difficult task. I suppose it's like opening a cake shop and expecting no one to come in and sample the carrot cake. Leisyen was the person who helped me through that stage. A year later, people like my work, which still surprises me to this day, and I'm grateful for everyone who appreciates it. I'll slowly get used to that part…maybe.
Little fact, in case you missed this, Leisyen is the cover model for 'The Customer is Always…' I didn't have a budget back then, she stepped up. Now her face is on Amazon. She's truly made this easier for me and having her by my side is something I would never change.   

Your debut Novella “The Customer is Always..”is currently being featured in a collection of stories with four other authors. Could you please tell us how this came about? In addition, the main character in this book, Vincent, is a customer services assistant at an insurance company. After a little digging on you, could I ask whether this character may have been roughly based upon yourself in a previous employment?

The book, V, came about when Matt Shaw was compiling an anthology of books. Matt is a brilliant author and we have many things in common. However, one of the things we agree on is giving back to the fans. If you want an example, check this YouTube video:

That's us surprising a fan at her Hen Do, one of Matt's many ventures. I was privileged to be asked along. It was a great night. Anyway, V. The reason for V was to give fans, old and new, a book to buy for pennies, 99p or 99c, and introduce them to several authors at once. Fans love a bargain and Matt had the idea to do this. I was honoured when he invited me to participate alongside Kyle M. Scott, Tim Miller, Michael Bray, and Matt himself. I gave him Customer because, at the time, Charlotte was fairly new. I didn't have any other books to give him, however, Customer was my debut and it seemed fitting to give that one to the fans.
The character was based on any customer service assistant in any job in the world. I've been in customer service for fifteen years and I picked up a lot during that time. Customer is based on my experiences in an insurance role. Take away the antagonist and the thriller element and you have, down to a tee, a normal office environment taken from experience to page. Everything you read – minor spoilers – from the managers, to the mannerisms, the phone call jargon, the characters – it all happened to me at some point. I felt it brought the story alive because, simply, it happened. I didn’t need to write those elements because they were happening around me at the time.

A few months ago, I showed you the reading list on my Ipad containing three of your books and one of your anthologies as next in line to devour. Your statement was how “The little things like this make you smile.” Do you feel that will always be the case?

I think so. For me, writing will one day be my occupation, I want this more than anything. However, for me, it's not about the money, it's about producing stories that people enjoy. Your image was spurred by you enjoying one book and as a result, you ordered my back catalogue. To me, and any author, that’s a huge vote of confidence. Do I have moments of self-doubt? Sure. However, when people post images like that or praise me or share with their friends, it's something born out of enjoyment and it means I'm doing my job right. For so long, this was a huge worry so it's nice to put that little demon to bed. I find enjoyment in the simple things in life so it will always sit well with me.

The first book of yours that I read was “Charlotte.” I was immediately captivated by how well the story was written and flew through the pages in no time. Where did the initial concept for the story come from?

There's two answers here. The first is a simple one. I was browsing Facebook one night and came across my cousin's profile. I read the name, Charlotte, and I was like…hmmmm. I couldn’t stop thinking of the name. At the time, and this is the second answer, I was considering writing a story about a demonic child. After much procrastinating, I realised it'd been done before, but I couldn’t shake the notion that it would be a fun story to write. My sister was pregnant at the time and I started wondering what would happen if my nephew conjured an imaginary friend. I don’t remember having one as a kid but the thought, for some reason, spooked me. I put the two together and Charlotte was born.
As I mentioned above, inspiration for me comes from many things and Charlotte was born from two random thoughts on two completely different days. Sometimes, the ideas just come from nowhere. I enjoyed writing Charlotte because I don’t usually dabble in supernatural horror – I'm a realistic horror writer – but it was fun to push the boundaries and see what happened. I'm glad you enjoyed the story because it was a very proud achievement for me. 

Your first full length novel “All or Nothing” is a very elaborate, intricate story, featuring lots of characters with incredible depth and more twists than a corkscrew. You told me that initially, you only knew two things that were going to happen. Is this your common writing practice?

My writing practice varies. As mentioned, sometimes ideas come from nowhere and sometimes you have to sit down and think them through. All or Nothing was the latter. I'm no conspiracy theorist but sometimes you can't help but wonder if something shady is going on behind closed doors. Governments and billion dollar corporations fill the headlines with rumours of 'shady dealings' or corruption. When the idea came about, back in 2003, I was hooked on writing a story from four different perspectives. One was enough, but four was ample to show just how horrific the characters experience is during a Government funded, secretive pay per view with a deadly twist. It also enabled me to create different personas (having one person go from wimp, to hero, to dead etc., just didn’t cut it for me). I wanted to enjoy these characters and, in turn, ensure the readers did too.
I'll find that one book will flow from my fingertips effortlessly and I will find that another needs a bit of research and thought. I love having that flexibility, it means the process is always interesting. It also means I learn something about both writing and myself when I do this.  

Whispers –Volume 1. A reader described in a five star review, that your “Imagination knows no limits, and his ability to push the boundaries of good taste make for fantastic reading.” How do you interpret these statements from your readers?

The comments are awesome. I can honestly say, from now to a decade in the future, these comments will always put a smile on my face. I write to entertain people and when they say things like this, it means I've done my job correctly. It also means I will keep doing it to enable you, the readers, to continue enjoying my work. All I can say is thank you to everyone who's ever written something nice about my work. I also encourage anyone who enjoys my work to add me on Facebook and Twitter (links below). I love hearing from you.

In the same book, the detail and descriptiveness of your writing really blew me away. One story in Particular; Vermilion – A Travellers Tale really caught my attention. You actually feel that you are there, sharing the experience. Could you tell me a little about this tale?

Vermilion was the first short story I ever wrote. Back in…May last year, I submitted the story to Journals of Horror: Found Fiction. I didn’t expect to get accepted since it was my first story, however, I put everything into it. To this day, it's only one of two stories I've written in the first person. Some people have commented on the narrative of the story and that the main character is very deluded and psychotic, but this is what I was aiming for. I just wondered what would happen should such a person find himself facing the end of the world. It was a fun concept because he has no bounds, anything is possible. It also gave me a chance to go a little extreme.
When Terry West accepted the story, I was stunned. I'll always respect and admire Terry for giving me a chance to submit and for putting my first short out into the world. I don’t think we've seen the last of this character yet either. Watch this space…

You do a lot of work on Anthologies. I believe you have lined up “Kids”, of which I am honoured to be part of, “Edge of Darkness”, “A-Z”, and “Undead Legacy 2”. I sincerely apologise if I have missed any others.  What drives you to continue with these collections and how do you select the material that is chosen for publication?

I believe it comes down to putting out the best work possible. Undead Legacy, the first volume, my debut anthology with Essel Pratt, was very well received by readers and contributor alike. I've read a few anthologies in my time and always find them enjoyable. They also played a huge part in my career when I started out. Getting those acceptances in was a highlight of 2014 and every time I received one, it made me realise that 'wow, people actually enjoy my work'. As I slowly started building a portfolio of short stories – see Whispers – Volume 1 – I realised that not only was I putting together collections of my own, but I was generating some buzz for my work. Now, it’s a year later and I see authors submitting in the hope of getting accepted. I was there once, they are heading down the same road I was, and still am, and its nerve wracking. If I can help them make this easier, I'm all for it.
I recently joined Dark Chapter Press and I also work for J Ellington Ashton Press as well. Both have taught me so much in varying time frames, but one thing I have learned is you can never have too much work. I love discovering new authors – like you, Matt, your story for Kids was phenomenal – and if I can give just one person a boost (I believe this is your writing debut), then I'm all for it. Kids is upcoming, A-Z, Edge of Darkness and Undead Legacy 2 are all flowing nicely too. It's going to be a busy 2015, starting with 'Kill for a Copy', the debut anthology from Dark Chapter Press. One of my favourite authors, Shaun Hutson, is providing the foreword. Exciting times lay ahead for Dark Chapter Press, watch this space. 

Another question from Christine; I believe that you have recently been researching the American Frontier and the Wild West. What was the favourite thing that you learned or already knew about American history?

I love the era, which is probably a cliché male answer. I grew up on the Wild West in films and music, courtesy of my father. I always enjoyed the raw, undisciplined, unlawful theme of it all. To think, this happened merely years before civilisation as we know it began to form. I just love that everyone had their heroes from the time such as Wyatt Earp, William H. Bonney, Wild Bill Hicock, Jesse James, Butch and Sundance…to name a few. To me, The Wild West was a time of consequence against the beauty of the American landscape and its contrast has always interested me.
I'm still learning but, even when the story I'm working on is complete, I will continue to research it. There's a thin line between research and enjoyment and this is definitely one of those times.  

I understand that you recently made a surprise appearance, at one of your reader’s horror themed hen party with fellow Author Matt Shaw. How did this go, and is it something that you may consider doing more of in future?

Ha, I already mentioned this. In case you missed it, watch it here:
It was fantastic. Matt and I were a little nervous at first but once we arrived, it all went smoothly. The bride, Laura, had no idea we were coming. Luckily, she recognised Matt (his biggest concern) and it all went off without a hitch. I will definitely do more of this. As mentioned, I love giving back to the readers and I will continue to do this for the people who make it possible for me to have a writing career.
FYI, guys and gals, Matt Shaw and I are at London Film and Comic Con in July with fellow author, Chantal Noordeloos. I'll be signing books, taking photos and avoiding Matt's amorous glances…

Talking of Which, I believe that you are doing Comic Con in London this July. What can we expect to see from you in regards to merchandise etc?

You did your research. : )
Matt Shaw and Chantal Noordeloos will be there too.
I'll be taking physical copies of 'The Customer is Always…', 'Charlotte', Whispers – Volume 1: A Collection' and 'All or Nothing'. I will be signing them and, if required, taking photos with fans. If you haven't bought a copy of the books, you can do so there. If you have already, bring them with you and I will happily scribble on the pages. I'm looking forward to the weekend, it's going to be a blast.

What advice would you give to anyone that would want to be a writer in any description?

The simple answer is to persevere. Don’t give up, trust me, sometimes you might want to. If you work hard, commit to the cause and muscle through, you're well on your way. I would also create your brand as soon as possible. Get all the sites (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads) and be accessible to your fans. And don’t let the money determine your success…if you're in it for the money, quit now. If you love writing, that will shine through and that's the most important thing.

Do you have anything other than we have covered imminent, and what can we expect from you for the remainder of 2015?

Aside from the anthologies, which consume a lot of my time at the moment, I am putting the finishing touches to Grin and Cine. Omertà, Boys and 89 are in the works too. I have plans to start my first series, The Vector Series, in September. This is a trilogy based on a world ravaged by apocalypse. I have enclosed the first cover, Aftermath, for your perusal. I am also waiting for contractual obligations to finish to release Whispers – Vol 2 and Vol 3.
I have several other ideas on the burner too. Right now, I am focusing on my editorial work. As mentioned, DCP and JEA are exciting publishing presses and being involved is an absolute privilege. However, the second half of 2015 will see several releases from yours truly.  

As I feel we have been going a while, I will start to wrap things up. I’m aware that a huge influence on your writing was Richard Laymon, but as this is for the Fans Of Modern Horror Page. Please give us a few names of other Authors, both established and maybe just starting out that you feel deserve a mention.

My major influence is Richard Laymon. I also thoroughly enjoy Shaun Hutson, James Herbert, Clive Barker, Lee Child, Robert Crais and Stephen King. Authors I would recommend right now (based on novels I've read by them) are: Matt Shaw, Tim Miller, Jack Rollins, Kyle M. Scott, Chantal Noordeloos, Graeme Reynolds, Michael Bray, Jim Goforth, Ian Noakes, Mark Parker, Jasper Bark, Geoffrey West…there are many others. J Ellington Ashton Press have a lot of talented authors in a variety of genres. Indie authors are dominant at the moment and they are really beginning to shine.   

Lastly, you are incredibly approachable and always seem to allow time for your readers and peers. Where can you be found?

Anyone who wishes to add me on these sites, feel free.

The Fans of Modern Horror page is an independently run Facebook page by Christina Cooper. A lady devoted to her love of books, looking to do nothing more than network with like-minded people and have fun along the way. It has been an absolute pleasure having you here to answer our questions. Once again I thank you for your time and wish you continued success. Thank you, Mr Stuart Keane.