Merry Christmas Dead Hunger Fans!! Present time!!!

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Pucker up peeps!! Its time for the first gift of Christmas coming from Ol’ Santa himself…or wait, no, its coming from Shelman…close enough, right?

Fans of the Dead Hunger series have been patiently waiting for the next installment, and while its not ready yet, I do have in my hot and sweaty little hands, a TEASER!! a snippet of pure literary magic, (although somewhat “redacted” for spoilerless reading), a nugget of joy to get you even more in the holiday mood.

PLEASE NOTE: although there is no real spoiler in here that would ruin your enjoyment of the series, should you be one of the unfortunate that hasn’t read it yet, there is some hints in here that the hyper-sensitive reader may get a case of the cranks over.  If you are one of those, skip this, go …wrap a present or give out blankets to the homeless…..shooo!!

NOW!! cue this puppy up for some background mood music..  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kF9pjQMHZFA

and click Dead Hunger VIII_Peace Love and Zombies Prologue for your present

DH BIG

 

for more info on the author: http://www.ericshelman.com/

Leave me a comment, let me know what you think!! 

 

Aside

What’s Happening???

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This is just a quick update to let you all know what is going on lately! First, ATZ Publications has a new book out!!!

http://www.amazon.com/Very-Zombie-Christmas-ATZ-Special-ebook/dp/B00R7RU27A/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1419190170&sr=1-1&keywords=a+very+zombie+Christmas

I was lucky enough to have a story in this collection as well, one that I really enjoyed writing. K. Michael Gibson supplied a holiday addition to his Dead Pulse Rising series.

http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Pulse-Rising-Walker-Chronicles/dp/1493170171

and Eric A. Shelman blessed us with a glimpse into Trina’s world pre-zompoc.  I LOVED it!!

http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Hunger-Flex-Sheridan-Chronicle-ebook/dp/B005SHO3BC

There’s some familiar names from the last anthology plus some newcomers to the genre that won’t fail to get you in the mood for the holidays!

*****

Stay tuned this coming week for a teaser from Eric A. Shelman’s upcoming release of Dead Hunger part 8.  I know everyone is going crazy with anticipation for that one!! this teaser is only going to make it even more exciting!! THIS WEEK!! BEFORE CHRISTMAS!! Make sure to check it out!!

 

 

Winter of Zombie Blog Tour 2014-Eric Shelman

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Hey peeps! Today I have the pleasure of hosting the Winter of Zombie Blog Tour for 2014. BIG YAYYYY!!!

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GUESS who I have??? Meh! I will tell you! ERIC FRIKKING SHELMAN. There’s an A. in there somewhere.  Let’s try again, he’s partial to that A, Eric A. Shelman!! WOO HOO!! Look, here’s a picture…feel free to swoon at his awesomeness!

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The seventh installment in his much-loved  “Dead Hunger” series is “Reign of Isis” and we have a juicy excerpt for your reading pleasure.  Then, just go buy it.  If you haven’t read the series yet…get going! What are you waiting for? I am on book three and cannot stop! Here’s the excerpt then I will put some easy links for you to buy and stalk Eric! Well…you cannot actually BUY Eric, but you can buy his books, and that’s kinda the same thing!

Dead Hunger VII_The Reign of Isis

Excerpt from “Dead Hunger 7:Reign of isis” by Eric A. Shelman

Mexico-Texas Border

June, 2011

The tanker truck looked like any other.  Bright, gleaming chrome, polished as brightly as any mirror, so that occupants of trailing cars could marvel at their own fisheye reflection as they rolled down the highway.

While it was meant to appear to be identical to any other tanker truck on the roadways, this one was different.

Inside, a narrow center walkway allowed handlers to access two rows of cages on either side.  Each cage was narrow and tall, running from floor to ceiling.  There were twenty-four cages in all, each with an upward-sliding hatch to gain entry.  The tank side of the cages were covered with thick padding to prevent their captives from banging on the stainless steel walls and drawing outsider attention.

At the lowest possible point, a flat floor had been welded to the stainless steel floor so that the occupants of the cages did not constantly slide toward the center of the truck.  The interior was cooled by a narrow cavity that encompassed the entire outer shell of the truck where cooling fluids ran, fed through hoses leading from the Freightliner’s engine compartment.

In fact, the interior of the tank could get as cool as 50 degrees, and there was no valve to control it.  Angus did not mind, though.  The occupants were rarely encased in the truck for more than two hundred miles once they crossed into the United States.

The exterior of the cab and the tank itself were emblazoned with the Pemex logo, Mexico’s state gasoline company.  A dummy corporation, AmeriMex, had been created to certify the frequent trips across both borders by way of a joint partnership of both countries, and Angus had made sure the forged paperwork would verify and pass any inspection.

There had been some failures early on, but they were dry runs.  He was now in his fourteenth year of trafficking young women, and he had never even had a close call.

The road leading to the U.S. border was more congested than usual. It was a Sunday, and that could make a difference, for people did like to venture into Laredo to buy food and gifts for family in Mexico.

The current haul was a full load.  Each narrow cage held one girl.  Angus had long ago developed a relationship with the Fuentes Cartel, with a heavy focus on human trafficking.  They made their way through several small towns and villages, snatching girls from their homes and holding them in captivity until Angus’ next run.

Among his current haul were seven pregnant girls, ranging in age from seventeen to twenty-three.  They were a two-for-one deal for Angus, and he always demanded a minimum of five pregnant girls per transaction.  The farther along the better.  Angus did not like to hold his stock for long before moving them, but it was more profitable to wait until the children were born so that they could be sold off separately.

Angus slowed, now just five cars from the border crossing.  As he sat there staring at the guards, with whom he was familiar, a car blew through the border gate coming into Mexico, angling directly toward Angus’ tanker.

He saw the driver through the glare of the glass; he looked insane.  His hands were not on the steering wheel, rather it appeared he was attacking the woman in his passenger seat.

Angus saw all of this just seconds before the green hatchback careened hard left and smashed into the concrete barrier just a foot to the left of his combo’s wheels, flipping over and spinning on its roof.

Traffic was still stopped in front of Angus, so he watched in amazement as the driver of the vehicle crawled out of the wrecked car and staggered around to the passenger side, reaching in and dragging the woman out.  He walked strangely; no coordination.  Angus could not see his pupils from his location, but had seen enough people on PCP to know that was likely what was going on.

The man lifted the woman and bit into her face.  He tore at her hair as though he wanted to rip it clean away, and he chewed on her face even as she screamed at the top of her lungs and beat at him with her flailing arms and hands.

Four border patrol agents charged toward them with their guns drawn, but the man paid them no attention.  He threw the woman down on the concrete, her head slamming hard against the pavement, knocking her into blissful unconsciousness.  The insane man fell on top of her, ripping the front of her Sunday dress open and sinking his face into her abdomen, even as his fingers clawed at whatever exposed skin they could sink into.

The border agents reached him and pointed their guns downward, but none of them fired, for the woman was beneath him. One tried to pull him off, but when the man lifted his face, the woman’s entrails hung bloody and dripping from his teeth.

His eyes were mad.  Angus watched, fascinated.  The traffic in front of him moved, but he was reluctant to drive away.  It was mesmerizing, watching this woman being eaten by another human.

My mother should have died the same way.  She got off easy, he thought.  Jane, too.

One of the border agents was looking straight at him and waving him on, ordering him to go.  He did not, temporarily forgetting about his highly-illegal cargo in the face of this strangely fascinating display of cannibalism.

As the man stood up and moved toward the border agents surrounding him on four sides, two of them shot him.  The explosions rang out as the rounds blew out his chest and right ribcage.

The man spun to his right as the first shot found its mark, and the chest shot sent him flying backward, slamming into the rear bumper of the overturned Toyota he had been driving.

Angus could not leave.  The man got up, a huge hole in his chest, a chunk out of his side.  The four then started firing with reckless abandon, and the man’s body danced as it still moved toward them.

Finally one of the officers blew out his knees and he fell to the ground, still growling and looking absolutely mad.  Instead of dying, the man clawed at the pavement until he had again reached the dead woman’s body.  He sank his teeth in and once more began to feed.

The men unloaded their weapons then.  The woman was clearly dead and they were obviously freaked out.  The rounds struck him in the head, neck, back, buttocks and legs.

He finally lay still atop the dead woman.   Angus let out the breath he’d been unaware he was holding and realized he had an erection.

He reached up to the sun visor and pulled down a pack of Winstons.  He lit one and accelerated to the border gate.  All the vehicles in front of him had already gone through.

He passed without incident, as usual.  It was perhaps even easier that day because of the horrific attack that had just occurred.  The agents were more interested in looking into the strange, rabid man who had just killed a woman by eating her alive.

*****

The next 200 miles were far from uneventful.  In several places, stopped cars blocked the roadway, and people staggered around, many of them approaching his rig, staring up at him as though he were of great interest to them.

Whatever was going on, it wasn’t just in Mexico.  At his first opportunity, Angus turned off the road to take smaller side roads.  Every cop car he’d seen had its lights and siren on and were headed toward something very important, so it did not seem he would need to worry about taking his tanker down a road where such vehicles were prohibited.

He knew all the best, least-used shortcuts anyway.

Rock Springs was mostly an industrial town, but he owned an isolated ranch on the southwest side.  There were four gravel roads one had to navigate to reach it, and none featured signage.  This was where he lived; he had long ago constructed a barn that would accommodate up to eighty girls at a time.  Among these women he created trustees, of a sort.

They were not actually trustees because Angus trusted no women; but they were as close as he would get.  The small nursery, designed to accommodate up to eight babies, was contained in a 10’ x 10’ cell.  The two adult beds in here were more comfortable than the meager mattresses on which his other captives rested.  There had to be some reward for the infants caretakers other than being allowed to live.

Perception was everything.

Angus slowed at the gate and pressed the remote control.  The large gates swung inward, and he drove into the yard and pulled the tanker alongside the barn.  It was time to unload and have a shower and dinner.

From beneath the trailer, he withdrew a four-foot long steel bar with a star socket on the end.  He inserted this into a hole on the rear of the tanker truck.  From a compartment at the rear of the tank, he removed a two-foot long rod with a center slot.  This piece fit on top of the other, creating a T-handle with which he could loosen the bolts holding the tank hatch closed.

Removing a ladder from a narrow but deep slot in the back, he leaned it against the rear of the trailer so that he could reach the rest of the bolts.

When he had removed all them, Angus repositioned the ladder and pulled open the rear cap, which he swung out to the left, like a massive, pivoting wall mirror.  A strange, reddish mist kissed the air as soon as he cracked the hatch.

Angus stepped back and stared.  Could it have been some sort of contamination?  He sniffed at the air, but did not smell anything.  His relationship with the Fuentes Cartel told him never to take chances.   To rush could mean to die.

Angus returned to the cab of his truck and unlatched the driver’s seat of the Freightliner cab, flipping it forward.  Behind the seat was a 12” x 12” hinged box.  He removed it, pushed the seat back into position and placed the box on the seat.

He opened it and withdrew a gas mask and a small tank of oxygen.  He kept them because he had seen the cartels in action before, and they had been known to use gas to exact their carnage.  He wouldn’t be falling victim to that.

He adjusted the straps.  In a situation where the toxicity level was unknown and the particulate size in question, only this type of device would do.  He cracked the oxygen cylinder and quickly pulled the mask over his face.  He returned to the truck, pulled out the sliding steps and climbed up.

In the darkness of the tank’s interior, pairs of reddish dots floated in the air, running from front to rear.  Strange growls and shrieks were coming from all around him.

Angus’ hand went for the light switch.

When the bright light bathed the interior of the transport, Angus nearly staggered backward so far he barely escaped toppling out the back.  He steadied himself.

The occupants of almost every cage had thrown themselves forward into the heavy wire, clearly unconcerned with their own well-being.  They smashed the front of their cages relentlessly, tearing and clawing at the wire as though believing they could work their way through it.  Angus stood back and stared in amazement and horror.

What the hell happened here?

The frenzy was happening further back, though.  He looked into the cage just in front of him along the right wall.  This cage contained a pregnant girl that his coded paperwork listed as seventeen years old.

There was a distinct lack of aggression on her part.  Her face was still, but as she turned her eyes toward him, they blazed a piercing red.  She sat inside her small cage, her knees drawn up to her chest in order to allow her to position herself that way in such a small space.

Her hair, which Angus had remembered to be long and wavy, now appeared straight, as though flattened with a hot iron.

Something lay by her feet.

He knelt down and she snarled, causing him to move away slightly.  He squinted at the thing on the floor and realized it was a severed hand – or to be more precise, now mostly the bones of a hand.  Skin and meat still clung to it, but not very much.

“What the hell did you do?” he asked her, his eyes moving to the cage beside hers.

The moment he did so, the woman in the next cage slammed the steel bars, snarling and biting the air as she pressed her face against the cage’s interior.  While the bars on the sides of the adjoining cages were far enough apart that it was possible for small hands to reach into another cage, the front was made of a thick steel mesh, preventing any reaching or clawing into the narrow aisle.

The whores had badly scratched Angus in the past, so he had learned his lesson.  It would not happen again.

The snarling girl-thing’s eyes were pinpoints; black dots beneath a wispy reddish mist.  Her skin was a roadmap of blue-black veins.  Angus noticed that several front upper and lower teeth that had been intact at the trip’s outset were now missing.  Blood stained her face, but he was not certain how it had gotten that way.

The caged thing attempted to claw at the mesh with both hands, but now only her right one remained.  The left hand was lying, mostly eaten, at the bottom of the first cage, leaving only a tattered stump at the end of her left wrist, nerve endings and shriveled tendons dangling.

Angus’ eyes dropped again to the devoured hand on the floor of the next cage, and to the very calm woman-thing staring at him from within, her red eyes penetrating his as though wishing to command him in some way.

He looked again at the shrieking thing’s stump, from which no blood at all leaked.  Angus’ eyes fell to the thing’s feet.  The pan at the bottom of her cage was half-full of a dark, thick liquid.  He had installed the pans to contain urine and feces in case the women could not hold it for the duration of their transport.

It was not bloody urine, for there was far too much of it.  It could only be her blood.  No other options remained.

Any ordinary person would be dead.

Angus staggered back from the cage again at the realization.  His eyes remained fixed on her.  Even as she snarled and clawed, her flat eyes had never wavered from his.  The look fixed there was as emotionless as that of a reptile.

If the expressionless eyes held any sign of emotion, it was of hunger.  Insatiable hunger.

Maybe she is dead, thought Angus.  If she was, her body was not, for it still moved as if she would never tire.

Angus stepped back from her and stared down the rows of cages.  What growled and clawed within many of them were not what the Mexican handlers had put there.  This entire load had been one of the best he had seen; very attractive girls and young women who would have fetched him top dollar.  Looking around the interior, Angus had no idea what had happened.

“Goddamnit!” shouted Angus.  “What the hell is going on!  My whole damned load is fucked!”

“Get us out of here, please,” said a woman’s voice.

Reluctant, but without a choice, Angus turned sideways and side-stepped down to the front end of the tanker, the frenzied creatures slamming the cages each time he passed in front of them.

Acting afraid was a sure way to lose respect, especially in front of a woman.  No woman could or ever would scare him.  Even a diseased one.

He was wearing a gas mask.  Untouchable.

He reached the prisoner who had spoken.  She sat, her legs drawn up with her head as low as she could manage.  She stared downward so that Angus could not see her eyes.

“Why are you on the floor?” asked Angus.  “Stand up.”

“I can’t,” she said.  “The one beside me sprayed me, and I got a headache.”

“Sprayed you with what?”

“The red mist from her eyes,” said the girl.  “Please,” she whispered.  “Let me out of here.”  She looked up finally, and Angus saw her eyes were a deep red, almost with their own illumination.

She finally stood, but pressed herself into the side of her cage opposite the next cage over.

“What happened in here?” asked Angus, relieved she spoke English.  He spoke broken Spanish – enough to communicate with his cartel connections.  Many of them spoke decent English, so he never had the need to learn.  He was often surprised at how much English the girls they got him knew.  Likely because many of them came from border towns and villages, and it helped to have some English skills.

“I could not see,” she said.  “I am pregnant.  Please, let me out of here, away from these … these things!”

“Why are your eyes red?” he asked.

“Are they?” she said.  “I do not know.  I felt dizzy a few hours ago after I was sprayed by her, but I do not know why.  Please, I hear things within my head.  I must leave this place.”

Beside her, another of the straight-haired creatures stood, clearly not normal, but not as ravaged as the woman in the second cage near the hatch.  She appeared almost identical in condition to the woman he had found in the first cage.

“What did you hear?” asked Angus, his voice muffled through his mask.

“They complained of pains in their heads, some of them,” she said.  “Terrible pains.”

“Down here!” shouted another woman from the rear of the tanker.

“Por favor!” shouted another voice.  “Afuera, por favor!  Afuera!  Afuera!”

“She wants out,” said the woman in the cage before Angus.  “Please, before we all get … changed.  Hurry.”

Angus shook his head.  “You sure you’re not sick?  Like I said, your eyes are red.”

“I was dizzy before, but I’m okay.  Please, senor, I am pregnant.  Something could be wrong with my baby.  I’m bigger than when I was put here.”

Angus looked at her belly.  Indeed, she did appear larger.  She hardly showed when she was put in the cage, for he inspected each piece of merchandise.  Now her swollen stomach appeared at least twice the size.

He removed a key from his pocket and said, “In a few moments.  I have to deal with these others before I can get you girls out of here.”

He walked to the rear to inspect the other two women who apparently had not changed like most of the others.  These three were the only ones remaining out of his entire haul that could speak.  Of these prisoners, two of them were pregnant.

Good.  At least he would still have the income from the babies.  The rest was a total loss.  He would demand his money back from the Fuentes Cartel men who had captured them.  Clearly, there had been an epidemic spreading through the villages where they snatched the girls.

The cartel had fucked him with faulty merchandise, and they had likely known what they were selling him in advance.  Something this contagious could not just spring up out of nowhere.

*   *   *   *   *

The stench of frozen rotted meat is in the air! Welcome to the Winter of Zombie Blog Tour 2014, with 10 of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of November.

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Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser… and pick up some great swag as well! Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them! #WinterZombie2014

https://www.facebook.com/events/1524813084430035/?ref_notif_type=plan_user_joined&source=1

AND so you don’t miss any of the posts in November, here’s the complete list, updated daily:

http://armandrosamilia.com/2014/11/01/winter-of-zombie-post-list-winterzombie2014

Eric A. Shelman’s  website:http://www.ericshelman.com/

Amazon link for “Reign of Isis” http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Hunger-VII-Reign-Isis-ebook/dp/B00LOZN1UG/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1417231442&sr=8-3&keywords=eric+a+shelman

Check him out on youtube! https://www.youtube.com/user/ericandlindashelman

READ THE BOOK!!!

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book cover Look at that! Looks interesting, right? You totally WANT to read that. Entertainment for less than a cup of joe at Starbucks!…go on..buy it, I will wait here.  In fact…here’s the link to make it that much easier

http://www.amazon.com/All-Things-Zombie-Gathering-Horde-ebook/dp/B00PD6M7ZW/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1415967895&sr=8-3&keywords=All+things+zombie

So why am puffed like a peacock over this book?  Because I am in it!! I am one of 33 stories in this collection.  My little story all cozied up with some truly great published authors like Eric Shelman, Chris Philbrook, and Jack Wallen. Thirty-three stories of struggle, survival, family, love, fear, guts….you get it, there’s something for everyone here.  Even if zombies aren’t your typical fare.  Because the human condition is the true story, and its riveting and amazing.  I found myself running through a gamut of emotion while reading the other stories; fear, joy, love, anxiety, disgust…its all in there.  I am admittedly not usually a great reader of short stories but I have a new love and appreciation for them.  The advantage is getting a great reading experience in a short amount of time…I am not going to tell you to keep it in the bathroom but …you know….ok…I will stop there! haha!

Once you read the book will you please, please, please leave a review on Amazon? and then leave a copy of your review here so I can read it and share it!

One more bit of awesomeness, there will be a virtual release party for the book on Sunday, November 16th… be there or be square! no? OK….there will be giveaways and fun so join us please! Here is the link for that. Click it NOW!

https://www.facebook.com/events/748010045235858/?ref_dashboard_filter=upcoming

Want to become a member of All Things Zombie? You know you do!! Its where all the cool kids hang out! Here’s your invite! https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllThingsZombie/

Dead Hunger by Eric A. Shelman

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According to Amazon, I purchased this wayyy back in August.  Yes, my To Be Read list is that huge.  I am a fast reader and still, it took that long to reach this one.  I want to add that prior to even reading this book, I was enamored with this author.  I saw his name popping up on mutual friends Facebook posts and Goodreads lists, and of course with any author that’s new to me…I stalked him a little.  Because really, it’s a lot more enjoyable to read a book by someone who is not a dick. I have met authors that were not very friendly and it can ruin a good read.   But, he checked out; nice guy, funny as hell, tons of reviews-mostly good…I even friended him and participated in his contests on Facebook before I even read page one of this book.  Yeah, he really is that cool.  My first impressions of the book were not totally awesome though, I will admit.  The main character is Flex Sheridan, along with his girl Gem, later joined by a scientist named Hemp.  Sounded like the start of some bad 70’s porn. But I would not be dissuaded by my often-proved-wrong pre-judgment.  So I read…and I was hooked.  Yes, Flex has a porn-stars name…it really stops being weird by page five.  Because the character is so well-fleshed and such a cool dude that you want to be his friend.  He steps right in to the zombie apocalypse in situ when he runs to rescue his sister who is exhibiting strange behavior.  I was fully engulfed in the story, movie playing in my head as I read along and when Gem joined the show, well, I liked her too.  She is just the right mix of ass-kicker and girl….bravo to you for that rare, perfect mix Shelman.  The two along with Flex’s niece Trina,  move out into the zombified world; looking for survivors and eventually finding Hemp, the gorgeous, brainiac scientist, and Charlie, deadly with a crossbow way before Daryl was cool, and she’s a girl making her character even cooler.  The situations feel real, the suspense is nail-biting and the emotion is gut-wrenching.  Eric Shelman writes like he’s taken the TARDIS tardis to another dimension and actually experienced it all. Its THAT good.  Read it.  Then read everything else he wrote. Now.

Then friend him on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/CreateYourFate?fref=ts

Check out his page: http://www.ericshelman.com/

He’s also a crazy-good singer: https://www.youtube.com/user/ericandlindashelman

and I hear he likes to hang around this place: https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllThingsZombie/

 

All Hail the Zombies AND HOLY SH*T, I’m Going To Be In a Book!!

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My personal zombie addiction began around 1988 when my boyfriend at the time, Chris Alo, introduced me to Night of the Living Dead.  It was the original and at first I didn’t want to watch.  I realize zombies ask for some serious “suspension of disbelief” and although at the time I was a big Stephen King fan, I kinda dug my heels in when it came to zombies.  Until I watched that movie.  It sparked a love affair with zombie and post-apocalyptic fiction that has only grown over the years.

With Indie authors introducing themselves and their works via Facebook and other social media, and Amazon making it easy to self-publish, this genre has quite literally exploded.  The great books get pushed to the top of the heap and if you hang around any sites like Librarything.com or goodreads.com, it becomes easy to find your favorites.  Then you find Facebook groups that cater to your addiction; like https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllThingsZombie/. I am a member of that one and its a lot of fun.  Whole threads dedicated to each subject like video games, books, and movies.  There are also contests with very cool prizes.  Recently they took short story submissions to be included in a book that will be published through their own in-house publishing company.  Yours truly was one of the chosen and my story is featured among a plethora of fabulous authors such as Eric Shelman of the Dead Hunger series.  When its released I will surely drive you all nuts with pleas to buy one.  Here’s a little taste…

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Zombie lovers UNITE…right here!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllThingsZombie/

it really is where all the cool kids hang out….join us!

 

In Defense of Facebook

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There’s this friend of mine, Dave, who recently commented that Facebook is only good for looking at cute kitten pictures.  A lot of people chimed in to agree with him.  I was tempted myself, because bashing Facebook and the Zuckerberg empire has become so trendy, until I realized that if that were true, I would not even be seeing Dave’s post.  Because I have never met Dave.  He is a friend of my husbands, but because of the nature of Facebook, we have gotten to know each other pretty well and I now consider him my friend.

So,  I’m not concerned that I have never met Dave, his reality has been confirmed via my husband and other mutual friends.  That’s something that is always going to be a concern in the age of anonymity, are you really who you say your are?  I have my own personal vetting process that includes some pretty creepy things like scrolling though your posts, your pictures, your likes.  If things look off, for instance there is zero personal pictures or family members in your friends list, then I will ask for a selfie.  On the spot.  No time to search the net for someone else’s picture to steal and pass off as yourself.  I wish there weren’t people like that out there at all, but alas that’s not the case.  I recently had my own interaction with a faker.  In fact, she had at least two other profiles.  One of which was a hot, dippy blond that all the boys just loved! So you do need to do that tiny bit of checking before accepting that friend request if you want to have a positive Facebook experience.

For someone like me that lives, hell, in the middle of nowhere, Facebook has become an integral place for me to go to feed my need as a social animal.  My other, current, real life choices would be one of those knitting/sewing circle things ( I don’t think my Atari thumb or high-strung nature would like that), or the weekly meeting of the Seniors club.  I will pass.  Facebook gives me what I need.  Chit-chat, casual conversation, political debate, and the occasional private message to “what’s up” without an audience, all from the comfort of my couch, sans makeup and supportive undergarments!

Once apon a time I had my profile on Myspace. I didn’t  even know that website still existed….so I checked and yes, its still there, in all its narcissistic glory.  When I used to sign in there, I always felt vaguely embarrassed by the almost obscene hedonistic nature.  Like the Vegas strip of the internet. I want to talk to people, reconnect with old friends, but not with a pink, sparkly animated background page and prominently displayed lists of all the things I love and hate. No, if you want to know those things about me, you can either read my posts or click on my profile. Facebook makes you work a little harder to get to know someone than myspace.

My most recent discovery on Facebook would be the groups.  I have joined a few, mostly book related, and its hit or miss.  There’s so many, you can find the right fit if you just take a bit of time to look through it.  I like separate threads for books, news, contests and the like.  I want to know I can participate in  a discussion without being inundated by authors crop-dusting their book blurbs. I like book blurbs…but in their right place.  I have found a great bunch of people, fellow zombie addicts and book junkies right here https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllThingsZombie/, check them out or find your own group to hang with.

..and so ends my rant, I will climb down off this collapsing soapbox, but Dave, next time you post a cute kitty picture, consider who it is that is liking your picture and commenting on it. You wouldn’t know I existed if not for this silly thing called Facebook and we would of missed out on so many jokes and laughs.  I wouldn’t trade that for all the kitten pictures in the world wide web.

Just finished “No Easy Hope” by James Cook!

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So, this one was sitting in my Nook for awhile.  I had bought it on sale one day for my Nook and then it got buried under my enormous TBR pile.  I LOVED it.  Firstly…looking at the cover…I thought it was going to be in-your-face military dudes shooting up the deaders.  So totally wrong.  The main character Eric, has a fat inheritance and some property to sell.  While selling his old cabin, he meets Gabriel, who is one tough, intricate dude and they become fast friends.  One day some crazy things start happening on the news and Gabriel lets Eric in on a little secret….those be zombies!  So the story takes us on Eric’s adventure to make it to Gabriel’s cabin in woods.  There’s scary moments, touching scenes,  and non-stop adrenaline rushes.  The books ends on a satisfactory note if not a perfectly happy ending, but lo and behold peeps, there are more! Right now there are five total in the series.  I am psyched! Find  James on Facebook, and he has a blog that just blows my mind. I am in awe of this guy.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Cook/235140719906589

http://www.jamesncook.blogspot.com/

 

“One Man’s Island”, “Sedulity”, and “Until the End of the World”

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I have had some good luck in the reading of  three great books in a row!

First I read “One Man’s Island” by Thomas Wolfenden.oneman

I first got to know the author via Facebook.  He has a fantastic, sarcastic, and self-deprecating sense of humor.  I saw him promote his book and of course being a post-apoc/apoc junkie, I had to give it a shot.  Glad I did! I was so pleasantly surprised! This story starts with Tim, on furlough from the military and finding his life turned upside down. Then to make things worse, some sort of apocalyptic event wipes out most of the people.  So Tim goes on, in search of a safe place to lay his head and maybe help out or rescue anyone else that’s alive.  He ends up eventually finding other survivors and they go on together. I wont spoil the story…its really great.  It was never predictable and always interesting.  I found myself really rooting for the occasionally ornery Tim.  I felt the distinct possibility of a sequel…..there better be!

Next I read David Forsyth’s latest offering, “Sedulity”.imagesVQCBO7OR

No zombies this time! Nope…this time we are on a luxury cruise line in the Pacific ocean, just in time to see an asteroid crash into the ocean.  It causes massive waves and crazy weather events, people are dying, screaming, things are burning, flooding…..holy crap.  This read more like a Hollywood Blockbuster than a novel. There is tons of action, a dash of Poseidon Adventure, a splash of Titanic and a bit of Lucifer’s Hammer. My only complaint is that it left little room for character development.  That said, I still read it in a non-stop, reading frenzy, the hallmark of any good book in my eyes. There’s a sequel in the works, I hear….maybe I will get a bit more out of the individual characters with the next one.

and finally…I read “Until the End of the World” by Sarah Lyons Fleming.untiltheend  Another author I met via Facebook (as much as I make fun of stupid Facebook, I have met some great people and authors and found some fantastic books through it). So, honestly, this book sat in digital purgatory on my ereader for months.  Sarah had sent me a copy as prize for a contest I won and I was just so into the Game of Thrones thing that I ignored everything else. When I finally got around to reading it, I was almost annoyed with myself for waiting because it was stinkin AWESOME!  The story is zompoc with almost thirty-something’s, initially trying to escape the city as the dead begin to walk. It was a mostly typical virus outbreak that causes the zombie thing and really….there’s not a whole lot you can do to make that original these days.  Its all been done and done! so what’s really important if your writing  zombie survival stories is the characters and their interactions.  This is where Sarah really shines.  All the characters are believable, human, and so very real.  I felt like I really knew Cassie and Nelly and the others, and I was rooting for them as they made their way through New York on their way to Cassie’s parents house.  There were some gut-wrenching moments and a few that brought tears to my eyes. I also found that it was very cool the story takes place in New York and they travel through my old stomping ground and on up toward my current home…I really want to read book 2 right now but I have other commitments so it will have to wait….unless I sneak it in…..shhhhhh…

If You Enjoyed Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings…this is one for you!

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So as soon as I finished the last Song of Ice and Fire book, I had another book I promised an author friend I would read. Following on the heels of the epic George R.R. Martin is not an easy thing, yet I was pleasantly surprised. At first I saw a lot of similarities between the books and I started to pre-judge in a bad way. But I kept going because the story line really did grab me and I had to know what was up with this Khale dude. It didnt take long to realize it isn’t a rip-off or copycat as I feared originally.The story sucked me in and I once again lost an entire day in a book. So here is my official Amazon review, and Greg better send me a copy of book 2 as soon as he is done or I will FB stalk him into complacency. haha. I’m totally capable of it too!!
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This is a novel similar to the Game of Thrones series although certainly not a rip-off or copycat. There’s Kings and princesses and tough guys and castles. But this story is much darker and never goes precisely where you think it will. This story starts out with intrigue and grabs you right from the start. Khale is a warrior with a dark and mysterious past, set about on a mission to deliver a kings daughter to a cursed city. Nothing is as it seems and although I found myself rooting for certain characters, this changed as the story progressed and I learned more about them. Every time I thought I knew the outcome of a certain event, I was surprised and it really made for a quick read because I was always in suspense and couldn’t put it down. The story ends with a bit of a cliffhanger and I will be excited to see what happens next.