Poll: McCammon vs. King…

I thought I’d ask you who you think is the better horror writer.

Stephen King and Robert R. McCammon are two authors of the horror genre who have given me hours of enjoyment with their horrifying tales.

I decided that I’d give my two cents as too which author I thought was the “better” of the two.

These too masters of the macabre can not be compared on an apples to apples basis.  McCammon tends to  write horror novels with a few paranormal/supernatural elements thrown in to spice things up, while King writes paranormal/supernatural tales that are horrifying.

There are certainly exceptions to their writing styles.  For instance, Swan Song by Robert McCammon, definitely had a more supernatural bent and the novels Misery and Dolores Claiborne were as far away from the paranormal as Stephen King has ever been.

Robert McCammon has a more subtle touch when it comes to the paranormal side of his writing.  Yes, Swan Song, Baal, and They Thirst are all essentially supernatural in nature but the supernatural elements took a second seat next to the horror elements of the story.

Stephen King on the other hand seams to start with a supernatural idea and then creates his stories around them.  The horror wouldn’t exist in his novels with out the paranormal.  Carrie, Christine, Pet Sematary, and many more of King’s works are all great examples of this.

So who is the better writer of horror?

Pet Sematary was the first horror story I ever read and it made me pee my pants and I love to revisit it every so often.  Swan Song and They Thirst are both on my top 10 list of favorite horror,

I guess I’ll have to pick up The Passage by Justin Cronin and chew on this for a while.

Don’t forget to vote!

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Book Review: They Thirst by Robert R. McCammon

They ThirstA MASS MURDER.A DISAPPEARANCE.A CEMETERY RANSACKED.

It looked like another ordinary day in Los AngelesThen night came….Evil as old as the centuries has descended upon the City of Angels—it comes as a kiss from the terrifying but seductive immortals. Slowly at first, then by the legions, the ravenous undead choke Los Angeles with bloodthirsty determination—and the hordes of monstrous victims steadily mount each night.High above glitter city a deadly contest begins. In the decaying castle of a long-dead screen idol, the few remaining human survivors prepare to face the Prince of Evil and his satanic disciples. Whilst the very forces of nature are called into play, isolating the city from the rest of the world and leaving it at the mercy of the blood-hungry vultures of the night….

THEY THIRST

Theirs is a lust that can never be satisfied…

Another excellent tale from Robert R. McCammon.

In this tale of dread, McCammon introduces us to an L.A. that has been infested with some nasty, blood-thirsty vampires.

As with most of McCammon’s works I found the plot believable and well thought out. His characters were penned well and the element of horror was presented well throughout the entire novel.

I was chilled and thrilled aplenty with this book.

This was a page turner for me and I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of vampire stories.

Book Review: Pet Sematary By Stephen King

Pet Sematary“Sometimes dead is better….”

When the Creeds move into a beautiful old house in rural Maine, it all seems too good to be true: physician father, beautiful wife, charming little daughter, adorable infant son – and now an idyllic home. As a family, they’ve got it all… right down to the friendly cat.

But the nearby woods hide a blood-chilling truth – more terrifying than death itself… and hideously more powerful.

Are there better horror novels out there? Probably. Have I found one yet? Not yet. Are my opinions of other horror novels jaded by the bias I hold towards this book? Absolutely!

I first read this book when I was about 12 years old and at that time…I peed my pants!

I re-read this book about a year ago and found that it still held some unsettling and horrific moments. I was still scared by this novel but in a new and more mature way.

Stephen King wrote one hell of a macabre tale. It was gritty and real and made me jump with nearly every turn of the page.

The characters were quite believable and their motivations were entirely justified (if not wisted).

This book became the pinnacle against which I gauge every other horror novel.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of Stephen King or who can find enjoyment in a brilliantly written horror story.

Book Review: The Swan Song by Robert R. McCammon

Swan SongIn a wasteland born of rage and fear, populated by monstrous creatures and marauding armies, earth’s last survivors have been drawn into the final battle between good and evil, that will decide the fate of humanity: Sister, who discovers a strange and transformative glass artifact in the destroyed Manhattan streets . . . Joshua Hutchins, the pro wrestler who takes refuge from the nuclear fallout at a Nebraska gas station . . . And Swan, a young girl possessing special powers, who travels alongside Josh to a Missouri town where healing and recovery can begin with Swan’s gifts. But the ancient force behind earth’s devastation is scouring the walking wounded for recruits for its relentless army, beginning with Swan herself. . . .

Have you ever been reading a book that you just couldn’t put down? You’d cling to it while your eyes turned to lead and your head started to bob as sleep slowly wrapped itself around you?

This was one of those books!

With this book Robert McCammon has crafted a beautiful post-apocalyptic horror novel with a nice balance of good-vs-evil.

The characters were well thought out and believable to the point where I could empathize with each and everyone of them.

This is a must read that I have read a few times and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a horrifying masterpiece!

Book Review: Countdown By Jonathan Maberry

CountdownA prequel to Jonathan Maberry’s Joe Ledger series.

Time is too short!

I found this to be a disappointing, mediocre, short story that failed in it’s attempts to hook me into wanting to read any more from this series or by this author.

Reading the dialogue was almost as pleasant as chewing on tin-foil and I found that I couldn’t bring myself to feel anything but boredom and indifference towards the main character.

The plot was the only redeemable aspect of this short work of fiction.

A new kind of global terror in the form of a Zombie outbreak…cool concept…poor delivery.

I may re-visit this series again after reading other works that seam more worth my time.

I can not recommend this book except to those of you who may be fans of zombie apocalypse fiction.

Book Review: Black Sun Rising: Book 1 of the Coldfire Trilogy by C.S. Friedman

Black Sun Rising (The Coldfire Trilogy, #1)The Coldfire trilogy tells a story of discovery and battle against evil on a planet where a force of nature exists that is capable of reshaping the world in response to psychic stimulus. This terrifying force, much like magic, has the power to prey upon the human mind, drawing forth a person’s worst nightmare images or most treasured dreams and indiscriminately giving them life. This is the story of two men: one, a warrior priest ready to sacrifice anything and everything for the cause of humanity’s progress; the other, a sorcerer who has survived for countless centuries by a total submission to evil. They are absolute enemies who must unite to conquer an evil greater than anything their world has ever known.

The first book in The Coldfire Trilogy.

I have been struggling with whether to give this book 2 stars or three. I would have liked to give it 2.5 as there were some really good things in this book while at the same time I found that there were parts of this book that were merely OK.

Damien Kilcannon Vryce is a Warrior Priest who sets out on a journey to right some wrongs in a magically receptive world where your darkest thoughts can take physical form.

For the most part I found this book was written well and the magic system was creative and fresh.

The world was beautifully crafted and I was given just enough detail to spark my imagination.

Some of the characters in this book were well thought out and believable.

There were parts of this book that dragged but I found that I’d get to a point in the story that made the plodding well worth it.

Where does one start with the characters in this novel? There were a few characters who were brilliantly crafted while others were nothing more than shadowy figures who I couldn’t like or care about at all.

It was almost as if the author had written the character’s on a sliding scale where one character was written as a 10 and others were written as a 5 or lower.

My biggest complaint with this book? Stop with all the whining about the moral conflict (you are a priest…he is a demon..we get it already!).