Thursday, 28 November 2013

Tastes of Horror by Matt Shaw

This is a collection of the author's best selling novellas, plus a bonus new short story called The Ward.

I have read all five of these stories before, and I have reviewed them all individually so there isn't much point in me rehashing them here. I will, instead, concentrate on the short, The Ward. This is a story inspired by Matt's recent spell in hospital. It has a very creepy vibe to it, I certainly wouldn't want to stay in this particular hospital. The story leads you down the path that it is all a morphine addled hallucination, but then asks the question 'Or is it?' I do like the way Matt takes every day experiences and puts his horror twist to them. Long may he continue!

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Once Upon A Time by Matt Shaw

This is the story of Peter's (from The Peter Chronicles) early years. It charts his life from early on until he is fifteen. Seen through both Peter and his mother's eyes, the story tells of his upbringing and home life.

This was a great way to peek into the early life of a monster. The story really goes a long way to making the reader understand how and why Peter turned out to be the monster he became. Some parts were quite difficult to read, especially as I am a mum myself, but they had to be told in order to get a true sense of the horrors Peter grew up enduring. Again the pace belted along, and the characters felt a bit like old friends (If you can call a psychopath an old friend!) and we all like to get a bit of background on our friends don't we?  Another great addition to The Peter Chronicles.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

All Good Things by Matt Shaw

This is essentially the last in the Peter Chronicles. Peter has come to the conclusion that he doesn't deserve love and has made it his mission to 'save' prostitutes, and 'punish' rinsers and con-artists. That's his plan anyway, but we all know the best laid plans have a habit of going awry....

Sniff, sob, this is the last we will see of Peter. I am sad, but Matt has ensured that Peter's story ends with a bang. The pace as ever was relentless and the cast small. The twist towards the end was quite unexpected but made for interesting reading and added a different view on things. Now I have to come to terms with no more Peter, but Matt was right to end it where he did, and this was a fitting end for a guy like Peter.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Peter by Matt Shaw

This is the continuing story of Peter, first met in Happy Ever After. Peter is trying to live a normal life after the atrocities of the previous books. He has got himself a job and seems to have made a friend there, and also a friend on Facebook. Sadly, not all is as it seems, and the past has a way of catching up to him....

This is another brilliant installment in the Peter Chronicles. Seen entirely through Peter's eyes we are taken on a wild ride as he tries to live a normal life. I enjoyed the non stop pace and the small cast kept the story tight and suspenseful. I love the Peter Chronicles, and this fitted in well to the story of Peter's life. I shall be sad when the Chronicles end, as I feel like Peter is becoming an old friend, albeit a psychotic one!!

Saturday, 23 November 2013

9 Months Book Three by Matt Shaw

This is the final installment in the trilogy. Jessica is still being imprisoned for the length of her pregnancy. The day of delivery is not far off now, and Jessica must summon all her reserves of strength to get through this. Will she get her 'Happy Ever After' or not?...

I was so excited to get stuck into this, as I had gone through all Jessica's ups and downs, and this delivered on all levels. The big reveal at the end was unexpected, and suddenly everything made sense. Matt created a masterpiece, and considering these were written fairly early on his writing career, they have stood up really well against his newer works. I recommend this trilogy for a quick, sharp and taut read.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Revenant Road by Michael Boatman

This is the story of Obidiah Grudge. One minute he is writing successful horror stories, the next he hears of the death of his estranged father. He goes to the funeral and there he meets his father's so-called partner. Soon he learns that a far different path has been chosen for him than the one he is on...

I enjoyed this but not as much as I thought I would. I loved the dark humour, and there were some seriously funny moments, believe me. I just couldn't feel anything for the protagonist. He seemed to spend the entire book griping and moaning and not really getting on with things. There were times when I seriously wanted to slap him! That being said, the story itself was excellent and really good fun. The pace was good, and the ending was brilliant. If you can get past the ever complaining main character, then this is an enjoyable romp.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

9 Months Book Two by Matt Shaw

This is the continuing story of kidnapped, pregnant Jessica. In the last book we found out WHO kidnapped her, now we need to find out WHY. This time around more truths will be revealed, and there are more twists on the road ahead....

In this, the second installment Matt has upped the ante for poor Jessica. The pace was relentless, and I read this in one sitting. The characters were believable, and I really felt for Jessica as she tried to make sense of the horror of her situation. I thought she was incredibly brave and at times surprised me with her tenacity. I thoroughly enjoyed this and was eager to start the last instalment.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Evil Lurking Within by Matt Shaw

This is the story of John. With the help of his friend and cellmate Frank, they conspire to kidnap Tom, in the hopes of a large ransom. It goes from bad to worse almost from the beginning however. This is their story, set over the course of five days. Five days that culminate in a horror that no one could have foreseen....

I enjoyed this as much as I have Matt's other books, even though it was something slightly different for him. As ever, I invested my time in the characters to find a huge unexpected twist at the end. With only a small cast, the story was tightly told, and the tension shone through.  The characters were believable, and the story flowed at a quick pace. The twist at the end was totally unexpected and added an interesting dimension to the story, which could have been just a run of the mill kidnap/ransom thriller. This is an another fine release from Matt Shaw.