Saturday, November 21, 2015

Bitch Planet, Book One: Extraordinary Machine

 Once in a while, an acclaimed bit of entertainment comes along that "Age-checks" me; In other words, it makes me realize that I am closer to a half-century on this planet with each passing day, and I (seemingly) have seen it all, and that a younger person's "Fresh, bold, and innovative" book is my "Stale, old, and ripped-off" book.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Monday, November 9, 2015

Sour Candy, by Kealan Patrick Burke

 I've been beating the drum for Kealan Patrick Burke ever since Necessary Evil Press published his novella, THE TURTLE BOY over a decade ago. The man has style and talent out the wazoo, and his prose can cut you right down to your soul. He's tagged as a Horror author, but he's one of those rare talents that you just hate to see pigeonholed, since he's so damned good at anything he puts to paper. There are a lot of authors that I enjoy, but few that can actually affect me emotionally on a consistent basis...Kealan has written stuff that has creeped me out, stuff that has mad me think, and stuff that has devastated me. When people ask me "Who's your favorite author?", they usually get a list, but Kealan's name is, invariably, close to the top of that list. He's someone that you need to discover, if you haven't already.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Double-Barrel Movie Review: Crimson Peak & Goosebumps there a better time of year than the Halloween season? Horror movies abound, I'm in my glory, and my wife is miserable....

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Amazing Spider-Man: The Complete Alien Costume Saga, Book 2

 Back when painted covers were the (VERY RARE...) exception, I cannot stress what a huge impact the (Pictured above) Charles Vess cover image for WEB OF SPIDER-MAN #1 had on fans of my generation. It hammered home that WEB #1 was an important, not-to-be-missed issue. New #1's, especially those starring a major character like Spider-Man, were a big thing. In the pre-reboot/relaunch 1980's, the black costume was as big as it got.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Jaws 2: The Making of the Hollywood Sequel, by Louis R. Pisano and Michael A. Smith

 I've been a fan of JAWS since I was a child. I vividly remember nagging my mother to take me to see the film when it was first released in 1975. (She wisely turned down the chance to permanently scar a four-year-old, choosing instead to let the permanent scarring occur when it first aired on TV a few years later.) Somehow, I never made the mental connection between the film that had terrified me and my frequent summer trips to the Jersey Shore, until I was bumped by a shark when I was 10, and that was all she wrote for me and the ocean. I haven't been back since, and I doubt I'd even go in a lake or river at this point. (Thanks, RIVER MONSTERS, for showing me that NO body of water is safe.) Hell, if I close my eyes for too long in the shower I can almost feel the jaws of Carcharodon Carcharias closing around me....brrr.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Alex + Ada, Volume 3

 The AI love story comes to an unexpectedly quick conclusion in ALEX + ADA, VOLUME 3.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Alex + Ada, Volume 2

 Taking a break from my Spider-Man marathon to catch up on the tender romance between a boy and his robot....

The Amazing Spider-Man: The Complete Alien Costume Saga, Book 1

 As my marathon re-reading of THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN nears its (temporary...) conclusion, I finally reach what was a turning point in my years as a fan.....The Black Costume saga!!!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Spider-Man by Roger Stern Omnibus

 The second-greatest SPIDER-MAN run ever, collected in one massive hardcover? Yes, please.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Undocumented: A Dominican Boy's Odyssey From A Homeless Shelter To The Ivy Leage, by Dan-el Padilla Peralta

 Truth in crabbiness: The Author of this book, Dan-El Padilla Peralta, married my cousin Missy a few months ago. My son Mikey was their ring-bearer, and my daughter Jessica was a junior bridesmaid. To my detriment, I refuse to lie about whether or not I like a book, so my plan was to just keep my mouth shut if I read UNDOCUMENTED and didn't enjoy it. I'm pleased to say that I loved the book, so now you get to suffer through reading my thoughts on it.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Justice League, Volume 6: Injustice League

 Geoff Johns keeps up his usual breathless pace in JUSTICE LEAGUE, VOLUME 6: INJUSTICE LEAGUE.......

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Arkham Manor

 Stately Wayne Manor......made over into a madhouse? Holy headcases, Batman!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Deep Dark Fears, by Fran Krause

 Fran Krause brings 101 of your deepest, darkest fears to light in this incredibly entertaining (and enlightening!) collection.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Trollhunters, by Guillermo Del Toro and Daniel Kraus

 Geek legend Guillermo Del Toro teams up with Daniel Kraus, author of the amazing novel ROTTERS, to tell an epic tale of dark fantasy.

 Soooo......what went wrong?

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Sunday, July 5, 2015

To The Stars: The Autobiography of George Takei, Star Trek's Mr. Sulu

 Oh myyyy! Gallery Books finally issues an e-book version of George Takei's 21-year-old autobiography TO THE STARS: THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF GEORGE TAKEI, STAR TREK'S MR. SULU.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

A Star Is Born & Born Again: Variations on a Hollywood Archetype, by James Stratton

 I'm a sucker for books about the filmmaking process. I guess that extends to films that I haven't even seen, and really had little interest in seeing.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Southern Bastards, Volume 2: Gridiron

 Writer Jason Aaron and artist Jason Latour switch gears, turning the focus on Coach Euless Boss, and revealing what made him the man he is today.

Southern Bastards, Volume 1: Here Was A Man


Marvel Masterworks, Vol. 205: The Amazing Spider-Man

"Got to break free of Doctor Octopus----Before the ghost of Hammerhead murders my Aunt May!!"
Yeah, that's right!! Hammerhead is a ghost, AND he wants to kill Aunt May!!!
God, I love the '70's.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Marvel Masterworks, Vol. 192: The Amazing Spider-Man

 The Spider-train keeps on rollin', with MARVEL MASTERWORKS, VOL. 192: THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, collecting THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #'s 143-155, and material from THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN #1.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Marvel Masterworks; The Amazing Spider-Man, Volume 14

The Spider-marathon continues with MARVEL MASTERWORKS: THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, VOLUME 14, collecting THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #'s 132-142, and GIANT-SIZE SUPER-HEROES #1, with additional material from MARVEL TREASURY EDITION #1.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Volume 6

 Now this is my Spider-Man sweet spot....I was introduced to Spider-man through the stories collected in this volume back when they were presented in the pages of MARVEL TALES in the mid-'70's, and they remain some of my all-time favorite comics.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Volume 5

My AMAZING SPIDER-MAN chronological marathon continues with ESSENTIAL AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, VOLUME 5, which collects THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #'s 90-113.

Dark Screams, Volume Four

The screams are darker than ever in this fourth volume of the digital horror series...

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Movie Review- Avengers: Age of Ultron

The original was the most fun I've ever had at the movies....can the sequel possibly measure up?

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Crabby Reader Request: STAR WARS: HEIR TO THE JEDI, by Kevin Hearne

 One of the faithful "Crabby Readers", my buddy John Ernst, has repeatedly requested, both in person and in the comments section, that I review Kevin Hearne's new novel STAR WARS: HEIR TO THE JEDI. I'm open to requests, and I already had a review copy, so why not?

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Birthright, Volume One: Homecoming

 Image Comics has delivered another winner with BIRTHRIGHT, VOLUME ONE: HOMECOMING, an epic of dark fantasy and familial turmoil.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Dark Screams, Volume Two

 Volume Two of the DARK SCREAMS digital Horror series arrives, with new stories by Norman Prentiss, Graham Masterton, and Shawntelle Madison, and classic reprints by Richard Christian Matheson and Robert R. McCammon.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Batman, Volume 6: Graveyard Shift

 Should have been buried by the graveyard shift.

Batman '66 Meets The Green Hornet

Fans of the classic Adam West BATMAN series will love BATMAN '66 MEETS THE GREEN HORNET, which sequelizes the famous crossover episode.

Monday, April 6, 2015

The Nightmare Girl, by Jonathan Janz

 When I was a kid, one of my favorite movies that I should probably not have been allowed to watch was RACE WITH THE DEVIL. This nightmarish film followed a pair of couples vacationing in an RV who picked the wrong place to spend the night. They're parked in a big, open field, having a grand old time hanging out and shooting the breeze, when they see a bonfire being lit across the field. They laugh it off, at first, assuming the robed figures they see cavorting around are harmless hippies, but they stop laughing when they see a human sacrifice being performed. They end up being noticed by the "hippies", who are actually a Satanic cult, and the rest of the film is a relentless chase across the backroads of America, with the cult pursuing the RV everywhere, and seemingly every innocent bystander that they approach for help is really a cult member out for their blood. This film made a HUGE impression on my fragile young mind, and I often wonder why, aside from a phenomenal Jack Ketchum short story whose name I can never recall, there isn't more Horror fiction about Satanic Cults. Well, here comes Jonathan Janz to the rescue!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

The Border, by Robert McCammon

 I have to start by being totally honest: I rarely, if ever, read Science Fiction. And that's what Robert McCammon's new novel, THE BORDER, is, despite the back-cover copy that describes it as "...a triumphant return to the epic horror and apocalyptic tone of his books Swan Song and Stinger..." There are certainly horrific elements, but this is a Science-Fiction book.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015


 Professional blowhard Mark Millar tackles Sci-Fi, with a stutlifyingly dull Flash Gordon pastiche entitled STARLIGHT....

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Volume 4

Finally, the moment I've waited my entire life for: An Asian character says, in a totally non-joking way, "Ah, so!".

Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Scarlet Gospels, by Clive Barker

Clive Barker hit the Horror scene with the impact of a nuclear bomb back in the mid-'80's. I remember the fervor that surrounded the release of his seminal BOOKS OF BLOOD series vividly...months worth of articles in Fangoria whetted my appetite, and I was counting the days until I could read the debut of a man who was hailed, by no less a luminary than Stephen King, as "The future of Horror". Finally, while on vacation in Arizona, I found the first three volumes in a Waldenbooks, and I went back home and absolutely devoured them, urging as many of my friends as I could to go out and buy their own copies of these extraordinary, groundbreaking collections of Horror fiction.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Inspector of the Dead, by David Morrell

 Legendary thriller writer David Morrell, creator of Rambo, returns to Victorian England with INSPECTOR OF THE DEAD, a sequel to his 2013 novel MURDER AS A FINE ART.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Live Right and Find Happiness (Although Beer is Much Faster): Life Lessons and Other Ravings from Dave Barry

 I'm a voracious reader, but, despite my innate human desire to laugh, I rarely find myself reading humorous books. Comedy is a subjective thing, and it's usually best served by watching/hearing the potentially funny subject matter. It's hard to make me laugh at the printed word. It's not unheard of, but it's a pretty rare thing to see me sitting there with a book, laughing.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Teen Titans Go! Volume 1: Party, Party!

I was going to start this review by saying that Cartoon Network's TEEN TITANS GO! is one of my favorite guilty pleasures, but that wouldn't be completely honest. There's no guilt involved...I think it's one of the most consistently funny shows on television, and I love watching it with my son and daughter. I've been buying my son some of DC's all-ages TEEN TITANS comics, but this is the first collection that actually features the likenesses of the cartoon characters, so he was especially happy to sit and read an advance copy of the book with me.

The Boneyard, by Keith Minnion

I've been a fan of Keith Minnion since I first stumbled blindly into the world of small-press horror. I started as a fan of his art, and followed him to his publishing venture, White Noise Press, which prints some of the most amazing chapbooks that I have ever laid eyes on. His debut novel, THE BONEYARD, is the last straw, though. It's completely and utterly unfair to learn that such a supremely talented artist is also capable of writing one of the best, most original horror novels I've read in quite some time.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Secret Origins, Volume 1

 DC resurrects an old favorite of mine, SECRET ORIGINS, now with a "New 52" twist.....

Tuesday, February 10, 2015