The Ninetoes Book of the Week 08/12-18/2018

Midnight Mass by [Wilson, F. Paul]

I found this book when vampires became more romantic and cerebral and- dare I say it?- sparkly. This book is anything but. Vampires have been returned to their tear the head off and suck blood from the stump viciousness.

“Vampires have always lived in Eastern Europe. But with the fall of the Soviet Union, they began to spread across the continent, then the world, turning whole populations into vampires–or human cattle. Having overrun India, the far East, and the great cities of North and South America, the forces of Night are now spreading into the countryside to consolidate their conquest.

In a town on the New Jersey shore, the vampires have just arrived, along with their human henchmen, the cowboys, who round up human cattle for the overlords in return for the promise of eternal life—later. For the vampires wish only a few of their own kind to rule, and feed. The rest of humanity are to be helpless herds, the source of the blood of life.

Falsely accused of abuse, Father Dan is drunk in a basement waiting for the end. His superior has betrayed the local Catholic congregation and become a vampire. Sister Carolyn has become a formidable killer of cowboys and vampires. Dan’s niece, escaped from the conquest of New York, has made her way south to find him. Brought together by Rabbi Zev Wolpin, who is shaken by the vampires’ fear of the cross and holy water, they plan their resistance. Against all odds, they discover that there just might be a way for humanity to really fight back. But first they will have to kill the vampire king of New York.”

This one is a definite must for horror fans!

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Your Friday Fun Read 08/10/2018

Raise the Titanic! (Dirk Pitt Series #3)

My pick for Your Friday Fun Read 08/10/2018 is Clive Cussler’s Raise The Titanic.

“The President’s secret task force has developed an unprecedented defensive weapon that relies on an extremely rare radioactive element—and Dirk Pitt has followed a twisted trail to a secret cache of the substance. Now, racing against brutal storms, Soviet spies, and a ticking clock, Pitt begins his most thrilling mission—to raise from its watery grave the shipwreck of the century…”

This book was written ten years before The RMS Titanic was actually found, and is full of thrills and chills. It is a race against time and the fate of the free world is at stake. Part “Cold War” thriller, and Part exploration novel, this has all of the hallmarks of what makes a Clive Cussler novel one heck of a good time!

What Ninetoes is Currently Reading?

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What am I reading? What am I reading? Ummm…….

So, here I sit, trying to decide on what I want to read next. In this respect, I envy my wife. She finishes a book, then is off to the next one with barely a thought. Can I do that? Nooooooooo….oh no. I have to be the flighty one. My mind moves like an over caffeinated hummingbird on some kicking acid! I was amazed that I was able to go from Appaloosa to Resolution so effortlessly. Truth be told, if I had Brimstone I probably would have jumped into that one. Alas, I do not have said copy…YET!

So, what to read? I just finished two westerns. I am kind of sort of wanting another one, but I also want to read some horror. Yes, I am aware of the “Weird West” genre, but I am not in THAT mood. Well, come to think of it, why not?

Then thrillers are also beckoning to me. So is science fiction, history, alternate history, and classical literature. I have to rein in my brain.

So, I am now down to Science Fiction, and History. For science fiction, I am considering Hell Divers by Nicholas Sansbury Smith and The Wright Brothers by David McCullough.

Title: Hell Divers, Author: Nicholas Sansbury SmithTitle: The Wright Brothers, Author: David McCullough

The two could not be further apart from each other. Yet my mind is excited at the possibilities.

I will keep you posted.

Resolution Review

Resolution (Virgil Cole/Everett Hitch Series #2)

TITLE: Resolution (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch Series #2)

AUTHOR: Robert B. Parker

GENRE: Western

PAGES: 291

I have a confession to make. I almost never read books in a series back to back. Ask Mrs. Ninetoes, she’ll tell you. That being the case, I was compelled to go into the second book, Resolution after reading the end of Appaloosa. 

I am glad I did! Yes, you read that correctly, I am GLAD I did!

Everett Hitch finds himself in the town, Resolution, after leaving Virgil Cole at the end of Appaloosa. There he accepts a job as a lookout in one of the two bars in town. The town is so small that it has the two bars, a general store, a hotel, and a couple of whorehouses. There is a copper mine and a lumber camp on the bare outskirts of town as well as a group of homesteaders trying to eke out an existence. Between one of the saloon owners and the mine owner, a war is declared with the saloon owner claiming victory, and ownership over the town. But he wants more, he wants to own all of the land and force the homesteaders off. Along the way, Virgil Cole finds Everett and joins him in his job. Well, Cole and Hitch cannot stand for that. Along with two other hired guns, they take on an army of 20 armed mercenaries. When the dust settles, who will emerge the victor? Well, I’m not going to tell you.

This book moves fast! How fast you may ask, well, I finished it in two nights. The writing is sharp, the action is fast, the characters are engaging. I was given a villain I really hated, and heroes I pulled for. It was a perfect follow up to Appaloosa.

5 out of 5 Bookmarks!

Appaloosa Review

Appaloosa (Virgil Cole/Everett Hitch Series #1)

TITLE: Appaloosa (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch Series #1)

AUTHOR: Robert B. Parker

GENRE: Western

PAGES: 277

Robert B. Parker, author of the Spenser Series, Jesse Stone Series, and Sunny Randall Series (all of them mystery/thriller) tried his hand at the western genre, and it worked!

Virgil Cole is a legend when it comes to gun hands. As years have gone by, he has had several partners, many have ended up dead. Then he meets Everett Hitch, a veteran and West Point graduate. The two become partners and move from town to town, taming each town in need of their talents as lawmen.

They are hired by the town council of Appaloosa, a small town that is being over run by a cattle baron’s (Randall Bragg) hired hands, who thieve, get rowdy drunk, and basically make the fine citizens of the town feel unsafe. Cole and Hitch come into town and institute their own laws, and kill a few men to make their point.

Along the way, Virgil Cole falls in love, or at least as close to love as he will admit, with Mrs. Allie French. Tensions start to rise between Cole, Hitch, and Bragg, especially when Allie French is thrown into the mix.

This is a western in every sense of the word. Anyone who is a fan of westerns will enjoy reading this one. Anyone who is not a fan of westerns but wants to give the genre a try, this is a good place to start. It move fast, like a bullet fired from a gun. The gunfights in the book happen just as fast, so fast that if you blink you miss it, and for me that is drawback. In one case, there is a gunfight involving six men and completed within one single page. I am used to a gunfight involving that many men going on for at least two to three pages.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves any genre. The writing is sharp, the story moves along, there is good character development on all counts, and you can even taste the dust from the streets, or feel the mud when rain comes in.

I give this 5 out of 5 Bookmarks!

Introducing Craig Spector

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-What is your name?

Craig Spector

-What genre do you write in?

Primarily Horror, Thrillers, things mostly dark and twisted with a streak of black humor.

-What drew you to this genre?

I think because I am mostly dark and twisted with a streak of black humor.

-What book(s) have you written?

The Light At The End, Fright Night (novelization), The Cleanup, The Scream, Dead Lines, The Bridge, Animals (w/John Skipp)

Editor: Book of the Dead, and Still Dead: Book of the Dead Vol. 2 (with John Skipp)

Solo: A Question of Will (aka To Bury the Dead), Underground, Turnaround.

Editor: Freedom of Screech (tbp 2019)

-What is your current release?

CRAIG SPECTOR: SO FAR – an omnibus edition of my three solo novels – A QUESTION OF WILL, UNDERGOUND, and TURNAROUND — available in ebook from Crossroad Press.

-How much research went into that book?

Quite a bit.

-What was the hardest part of writing that book?

Since the books were already written, it wasn’t that hard. But they were all their own cases of blood sweat and soul, a lot of research into everything from firefighting to nuclear reactor meltdowns and environmental apocalypse, and from heavy metal massacres with a body count of thousands to the inner workings of one single tragic murder and the effect of the legal and justice systems on a family, to the travails of Hollywood film development hell. Plus all the relationship and character stuff.

-Is this work part of a series?

Nope. But they are all part of my body of work, and as such, there are thematic through lines that trace through each.  I leave it to the reader to find them.

– Where can your book(s) be found?

On amazon, because isn’t everything?  For most of my books, from Crossroad Press for ebook and POD trade paperback editions, depending on the title.

-Reading time is valuable. Sell me on your book.

I’m a NY Times bestselling author with over three million copies in print to date, and reprints in seven languages. I am also considered one of the godfathers of the extreme horror subgenre known as “Splatterpunk”, though honestly I think my work bears faint resemblance to what constitutes that name nowadays. At this juncture I am somewhat regarded as an elder statesman “O.G.” of horror. My work tends to be taut, intense, often topical, and sometimes quite funny in a sick way, but ultimately terrifying and very human. I have a lot of fans and some of my books are considered ‘modern classics’ of the genre, but your mileage may vary.

I am also a musician, homegrown but a pedigreed honor graduate from the Berklee College of Music, and have been playing and writing most all my life. In 2016 I was diagnosed with Stage Four Prostate Cancer, metastasized to my bones, which has affected my views in life, death, horror, and mortality, to a great degree.  In 2017 and just recently in 2018 I have written, performed, produced, and released two solo albums, CRAIG SPECTOR: RESURRECTION ROAD, and CRAIG SPECTOR: OUTPOSTS, chronicling my emotional journeys and newfound status as a cancer warrior.  They’re both out and about on amazon, iTunes, CD Baby, and wherever fine digital download is sold, so I’d be remiss if I didn’t plug them, too.

I also have a freedom of speech-themed anthology for the dark of heart titled FREEDOM OF SCREECH just wrapping up, which is slated to drop in 2019. It features stories from authors such as Norman Spinrad, Chet Williamson, Elizabeth Massie, Tom Montelone, Jessica McHugh, Matt Hayward, Mercedes Yardley, Richard Christian Matheson, and more. That promises to be great fun.