All posts by Jo-Anna W

#Review #ExtremeHorror – Broken Dolls by Mioue Watson

It was supposed to be a tranquil Friday night for Lauren and her daughter, Tully. Then, someone knocked at the door.

Lauren thought she was being a Good Samaritan…

She never expected to have to fight for her daughter’s life. She’d always known that human beings were the most terrifying monsters.

What she didn’t know, until now, was how easy it would be for her to become one herself.

No good deed goes unpunished.

Okay, first of all. Wow.

So I don’t like reading blurbs and only read the first sentence of this one before I grabbed this book. I’m so glad I went in blind. As a horror movie lover, it had I Spit On Your Grave without the revenge part. There was just something about this story that had me thinking of this movie quite a bit. It’s dark, twisted, absolutely disgusting and vile but it’s now my favourite horror novel I’ve ever read and it definitely made the top of my list of 2024 reads.

Lauren and her daughter, Tully, live in the middle of nowhere. They have one neighbor, James, who lives closer to them and often pays a visit. My romantic heart hoped for a little something there between Lauren and James, but I should have known not to expect that.

One night, a good deed backfires and I couldn’t stop reading at this point. Actually, I couldn’t stop reading from the very first page.

Bret…I will never not think of this character whenever I see this name.

The things Lauren and are daughter are put through to survive…I can’t even put into words.

If you like extreme horror, descriptive scenes, a solid plot and a sick and twisted villain, I highly recommend reading this one.

Now I’m going to grab book 2.

Happy reading and good luck!

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/44EeU4V

#Review #ExtremeHorror – Dr. Parasite by Rowland Bercy Jr.

IT’S WHAT’S ON THE INSIDE THAT COUNTS…

Jacob Westergren, an expert in his field of study, gets paid to research the most sickening parasites known to man. But, even when he looks at the most appalling of the species, he does not see the intrusive ugliness that humanity does, he sees himself. He sees a vessel by which to purge himself of an amalgam of detestable emotions. Emboldened by promising experimentation, Jacob is anxious to unburden himself by sharing his emotional parasite, in physical form, with the rest of the world.

DEFINITIVE PROOF THAT, WE HUMANS ARE THE GREATEST OF EARTHS PARASITES…

This book was…interesting to say the least.

It was written really well and very descriptive, so unfortunately, I could picture everything. Wasn’t so bad until later in the book. But I knew going in and especially by the cover, I’d be in for something icky.

We meet Jacob who studies and researches parasites and is one of the best in his field. He decides to run an experiment and it goes down hill from there. For the rest of the world anyway. For him, not so much. He clearly has an obsession with these things and decides to use his body as a vessel.

This my first read by Rowland Bercy Jr. and I think it’s my first body horror novel as well. He did a really good job with his medical terminology. Not that I know anything about that stuff but it seemed legit to me. The author clearly did his research.

So all in all, I give this book 5 stars because it was gross, descriptive and the plot was on point.

Read in Kindle Unlimited now: https://amzn.to/3WAfJK5

#Review #ExtremeHorror – Zola by D E McCluskey

Gordon’s name was a joke.

It was given to him by Anthony Zola, a controlling, and abusive father, to taunt his wife over her love of cheese, and the fact that she had been steadily gaining weight since their marriage.

Andrea was a doting mother, and maybe a little overprotective of her boy, but she didn’t see that as a bad thing.

On discovering a secret, one the child had been told to keep to himself, everything changes. Now she must do whatever she needs to keep her, and her boy, alive.

Needs must.

Gordon is going to find that his love of cheese, handed down to him by his mother, and his love for the only woman in his life, is about to be taken to a whole new level.

From the dark mind of D E McCluskey, author of The TwelveCRACK, and Cravings, Comes another addition to his ‘Extreme Horror Series’.

Zola is about to take you into a whole new level darkness, and depravity.

“The perfect combination of extreme horror and heartfelt emotion.” – R E Shambrook

“Truly, a book of absolute depravity… but with heart.” – Christina Pfeiffer

This book was vile and disgusting but at the same time, also sad. For that alone, I’m rating it 5 stars, because it left me feeling all sorts of emotions. Which is absolutely crazy because I was not expecting that going into this one.

We meet a naïve woman who ends up finding out something horrible happened to her son. When she finds this out, she takes revenge into her own hands. Once this happens, the rest of the book is a crazy, twisted, disgusting ride.

I really have no words for what I just read but I can guarantee that I’ll be thinking about this book for a while.

DE definitely left me wanting to take a metal brillo pad to my skin and grab some tissues at the same.

Oh and I don’t think I’ll be eating cheese for a while.

Available to read in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/3v5vehF

#Promo #Horror – In Bloom by Paul Tremblay

There’s something in the water in this hallucinatory short story by Paul Tremblay, bestselling author of The Cabin at the End of the World and The Beast You Are.

Journalist Heidi Cohen is in Cape Cod investigating the sources of recurring toxic algae blooms along the coast. A local named Jimmy has his own theory for her. Every year the fetid growth gets worse—but it’s been going on longer than anyone knows. Decades ago, something happened to Jimmy that he’s never forgotten. Is Heidi ready for the real story?

Paul Tremblay’s In Bloom is part of Creature Feature, a collection of devilishly creepy stories that tingle the spine and twist the mind. They can be read or listened to in one petrifying sitting.

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/48lGBQo

#Review #Horror – It Waits In The Woods by Josh Malerman

Some chilling campfire tales ring too true to ignore. For one young woman, an urban legend calls her into the woods in a spine-tingling short story by the bestselling author of Bird Box.

The dense Michigan forest. Haunting wails. The clip-clop of demon hooves on a bridge to nowhere. It’s more than a tall tale to Brenda Jennings, whose sister disappeared in those woods one fateful night. Three years later, on a solo stakeout in the dark, Brenda goes in after her. She’s desperate for answers, and terrified to find what lies waiting on the other side of that bridge.

Josh Malerman’s It Waits in the Woods is part of Creature Feature, a collection of devilishly creepy stories that tingle the spine and twist the mind. They can be read or listened to in one petrifying sitting.

This one was my favourite so far of the Creature Feature Collection. 

Opso is the thing in the woods but like most legends, you get people who believe it’s real and those who don’t.

Brenda’s sister Amanda went missing years before and Brenda is determined to figure out what happened to her. She doesn’t tell anyone and goes off on her own to try and find her sister but what she finds, goes far beyond her worst nightmare.

While this story is short, it packs a spine tingling punch.

I always enjoy stories with a creature, monster, something that isn’t “normal” and this one is no different. 

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/4bMhJnR

#Review #ExtremeHorror #Novella – My Vagina Smells Like Sulfur by Sea Caummisar

My Vagina Smells Like Sulfur:
Description… The dark web has convinced people that the secret to a happy afterlife isn’t how you lived and whether you lived by the holy word. The secret to the afterlife is how you die. The more creative the death, (preferably suicide) the better your life is in the afterlife. All you have to do is record your death…. One Divinity Counselor claims that they can prove how great life is after death, complete with video of the dead person living their best life after death.

I had no idea what to expect when I started this book. I try not to read blurbs, so I did my best to go into this one blind.

We meet Madam Midnight who begins the book by torturing a woman. The things she does to this poor victim definitely left me wincing.

We end up meeting several other characters along the way and we find out that Madam works for a production company of sorts for the dark web. They do gruesome things themselves or have viewers send in home videos themselves.

The point of what Madam and her counterparts do, is to let viewers know the secret to the afterlife. It’s all in how you die.

This little book is jam packed with gruesome scenes, descriptive torture and more.

If you’re a fan of extreme horror, check this one out!

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/3vIXoiD

#Review #Horror #Novella – Ankle Snatcher by Grady Hendrix

Obey the rules. It’s the only way to survive the night in a short story about what hides in the dark by the New York Times bestselling author of The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires.

Marcus grew up believing his father killed his mother—then blamed it on the boogeyman under the bed. Always leave the lights on, his father warned, or the boogeyman will get you. Marcus still heeds the superstition, especially when he invites his new girlfriend over. Is Marcus haunted by a creature or has he just inherited his father’s murderous delusions? The night will tell.

Grady Hendrix’s Ankle Snatcher is part of Creature Feature, a collection of devilishly creepy stories that tingle the spine and twist the mind. They can be read or listened to in one petrifying sitting.

We meet Marcus who is on a date with Tess. When he starts sharing a little bit about his past with her, I found this part creepy. His dad apparently killed his mom and blamed it on the “Ankle Snatcher”. So now when I get out of bed, I’m going to be thinking of this. Thanx, Grady.

This was a fun quick little read and as someone who’s scared of the monster under the bed, this one was definitely creepy for me.

Marcus struggles with the idea that the Ankle Snatcher is all made up in his head or or if it could be an actual thing. He finds out that he’s not alone in believing that the Ankle Snatcher or other forms of boogeymen exist but he still questions those beliefs.

This story is my favourite so far of the Creature Feature series.

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/41KB9ol

#Review #Horror – Cows by Matthew Stokoe

One of the most outrageous, original and insightful books ever written on the subject of alienation and societal decay, Cows is a violent, blood soaked nightmare – a scatological tale of love, self-empowerment and probably the most extreme novel you’ll ever read. Hailed around the world as a cult classic, Matthew Stokoe’s novel set the bar for gritty urban horror.

Mother’s corpse in pieces, dead dog on the roof, girlfriend in a coma, baby nailed to the wall, and a hundred tons of homicidal beef stampeding through the subway system. And Steven thought the slaughterhouse was bad . . .

“If you enjoy the sensation of your jaw dropping to the floor in a combination of stupefaction, hilarity, and shock, Cows is your book. Matthew Stokoe has written a novel like no other I’ve ever read–appalling, funny, and possessed of a sense of outre violence that makes Joris-Karl Huysmans read like Louisa May Alcott.”
–Scott Phillips, author of The Ice Harvest

“Underground literary shock-rocker Stokoe (Empty Mile, 2010, etc.) slaps his readers in the face with this bloody, truly disgusting diatribe against normalcy. On the bright side, there’s absolutely no pretense about what the book is aiming for…”
–Kirkus Review

I have no idea how I’m going to review this book. I don’t even know how to rate it. This will be a book that I’ll think about for a long time. So for that alone, I’ll rate it 5 stars.

Warning: This book is NOT for the faint of heart and if you have a weak stomach, I suggest not reading this.

So I’m new to the horror genre and this year, I’ve found myself reading extreme horror. As a horror movie fan, I figured I’d give horror books a shot and I haven’t been disappointed yet.

Cows by Matthew Stokoe has left my head reeling. I really have no words to describe what I just read but here goes nothing.

This book is highly graphic. Definitely the most graphic book I’ve ever read. So for that alone, I’m giving it a high rating. This was like a train wreck that you can’t look away from. I had to know how it was going to end, so I forced myself to get through the graphic and nauseating scenes.

The writing was so descriptive, I could see the scenes play out in my mind. Lots of reviewers said that the writing was awful, maybe it’s because I’m new to this genre, but I thought the writing was some of the best I’ve ever read. But art is subjective, that’s what makes it exciting.

I am left feeling a little confused but at the same time, I don’t mind that so much. I think maybe the author wrote it that way, so we could all come up with our own theories regarding Stephen and his…um…issues.

After reading this book, a part of me never wants to eat beef ever again.

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/3RUq4wp

#Review #Horror #Novella – The Pram (Creature Feature Collection) by Joe Hill

A husband’s obsessive desire for a child leads to an unexpected manifestation of his yearning in a nightmarish short story about fatherhood dreams by New York Times bestselling author Joe Hill.

Willy and Marianne’s farmhouse in Maine has acres of meadow and fresh air, and a lonesome bridle path in the forest along which Willy daydreams and ambles. When he’s loaned a decrepit old baby stroller to cart his groceries home, the rickety squeak of the wheels comforts him. So do the sweet coos of a baby Willy knows can’t be real. Can it? In this twisted thicket, wishes come true—with a price.

Joe Hill’s The Pram is part of Creature Feature, a collection of devilishly creepy stories that tingle the spine and twist the mind. They can be read or listened to in one petrifying sitting.

I will be honest and say that I was left feeling a little confused by this story, so I’m not too sure how to review but here goes nothing.

I’m giving this book 5 stars based on the fact that I enjoyed the writing and the description of the scenes helped me immerse myself into the story. So kudos to the author for that!

I also enjoyed that this was a different spin on fertility issues. Usually you see it from the woman’s perspective bit this was from the man’s and I liked that. It definitely made me curious if a lot of men felt the same way. 

I knew instantly that of course there would be an issue with the pram. Willy is given it to cart groceries home and ends up bonding with said pram and the happenings surrounding it.

This novella wasn’t as creepy as I hoped. Maybe I should have read it late at night with the lights off. Or I’m desensitized. But I enjoyed it none the less. This review is a little wishy washy, so check the book out for yourself. You may just enjoy it!

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/48Wd0hd

#Review #Horror #Novella – Woom by Duncan Ralston

“Trust me when I say, this is messed up.” – MATT SHAW, author of Sick B*stards.

“I believe pain lingers,” Angel said. “Do I believe in spirits? In the supernatural? Probably not.”

The Lonely Motel holds many dark secrets… and Room 6 just might possess the worst of them all.

Angel knows all about pain. His mother died in this room. He’s researched its history. Today he’s come back to end it, no matter the cost, once and for all.

Shyla, a plus-sized escort, thinks the stories Angel tells her can’t be true. Secrets so vile, you won’t want to let them inside you.

But the Lonely Motel doesn’t forget. It doesn’t forgive. And it always claims its victim.

“This book is a wet dream of abnormal sexual psychology.” – Mort Stone, My Indie Muse

WARNING: Don’t buy this book if you have a weak stomach, if you’re easily disturbed, or if you’re looking for a light horror read. THIS IS NOT THAT BOOK. Seriously. You’ve been warned.

(For signed copies, please visit my website.)

We meet Angel and who hires Shyla, a prostitute, to come to the motel he’s staying at. The motel is called “The Lonely Motel”, so I wouldn’t even go to that if I was Shyla but what do I know. Add to the fact that when she enters the room, she’s instantly grossed out by the look and smell and even the feeling. That’s a red flag right there. Angel begins by asking her some weird questions and then he starts telling her a story about Johnny and Jenny. That’s when this little story gets really…um…strange, messed up, gross and just…icky.

This book is extreme horror and definitely not for the faint of heart. It continues with Angel telling Shyla more stories, each one horrible in their own sick and depraved ways.

By the time I got to the last chapter, I couldn’t read fast enough. I read it with wide eyes and anxiety. Let’s just say, it made parts of me hurt.

I also feel kind of wrong for saying this but I really enjoyed this story. Not sure what that says about me. As a horror loving fan, this one definitely did its job.

This will also be a little story that I will be thinking about for a while.

Available in Kindle Unlimited – https://amzn.to/4aDGaTL