Monthly Archives: December 2012

Long Black Coffin by Tim Curran

When I started reading this book, I was, for some reason, under the impression that it was a YA horror novel. I got over that very quickly. Maybe it is “new adult,” the new term for readers 18-to-25-year-olds, the age group right above young adult. The New York Times said that some in publishing as describe this genre as Harry Potter meets 50 Shades of Grey.

I haven’t read, nor do I plan to read 50 Shades of Grey. Don’t misunderstand me; I read The Story of O a few years ago and even dabbled in A. N. Roquelaure’s (aka Anne Rice) Sleeping Beauty books. However, I may be too old for this kind of thing now. Maybe there needs to be a “old adult” genre for us aging baby boomers.

Not really a “ghost” story, there is too much paranormal, even  H. P. Lovecraftian in the plot. Besides the bi-species offspring, there is the sex. Lots of sex. Kinky, perverse, masochistic-sadistic sex. Many readers don’t believe that Lovecraft’s work contains any sex. Go back and reread his stories.

A twisting brutal tale, it offers plenty of horror for anyone. Told in the first person, Johnny Breede slowly (very slowly, allowing more than adequate time for the sex scenes) learns the truth behind the death of his best friend and that friend’s suicide. Shocked, confused, and disturbed, Johnny becomes overwhelmed (and quite distracted) by his lust for the woman who holds the key to it all. Johnny finally understands  the horrid secrets of his friend, perverse secrets buried deep in the cellar, ghastly memories of sin and murder, and the mystery contained within the long black coffin.

Recommended for those seeking the sick and perverse.

 

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Moonset (The Legacy of Moonset) – Book One by Scott Tracey

Moonset is a new series about teenage witches and their dysfunctional family and a mysterious legacy

Justin Daggett, his trouble-making sister Jenna,and their three orphan-witch friends/siblings, Malcolm, Bailey, and Cole,  havegotten themselves kicked out of high school onceagain. The Congress (no, not that one) has to step in and relocate them to another new town. For some reason, they are moved to CarrowMills, New York, the town where their parents—members of the terrorist witch organizationknown as Moonset—began their evilexperiments with the dark arts, known as Maleficia, fifteen yearsago.Justin’s parents, in fact, were the leaders and were executed.

They have Witchers assigned to supervise them; the leader is Quinn, who just happens to be the son of Justin’s parents executor, Illana Bryer. The town seems a bit off, and strange things are continually happening. Justin finally gets a girlfriend, Ash, which brings some welcome happiness to his life. However, the kids come to believe that they were moved to Carrow Mills as bait for the remaining members of Moonset.

The siblings are accused of unleashingblack magic on the town, and they must prove their innocence. This leads Justin to learn a shocking discovery about Moonset’s past . . . and its deadly future.

Moonset has humor in addition to all the elements of a YA horror story. It also reminded me of The Unfortunate Events series because of the sibling relationships, I suppose. The magic and spells also had a bit of Harry Potter in it. On the other hand, it is probably difficult to write a book about magic and witches without reminding the reader of Harry. Also, there were so many names and terms for the people in the Congress and Moonset that it got a bit confusing. Another confusing element was that I didn’t realize until the 3rd or 4th chapter that Justin, the narrator, was a boy. I thought the story was being narrating by a girl. Maybe I just wasn’t paying close enough attention. Otherwise, there really wasn’t anything fresh in this book; the mild humor was its saving grace.

Its ending – and its title – promises sequels. It might be interesting to see what Justin, Jenna, Malcolm, and the others – and we – learn about this paranormal battle.

 Scott Tracey’s first novel, WITCH EYES, was listed as a YALSA Popular Paperback for 2011, and an Amazon Best of 2011 book in the LGBT category. DEMON EYES is his latest release.

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Filed under Horror, Young Adult Literature