Book Review: Twerk by Isobel Blackthorn

March 4, 2019 at 10:30 pm (writing)

HorrorAddicts.net

Twerk by Isobel Blackthorn

Reviewed by Chantal Boudreau

When this title came up on the review list, I was more than a little intrigued.  Adding sexy to horror can make for an interesting mix.

I have to be honest–in the past when I’ve read horror with an erotic element, it tends to be on the vulgar side without stylistic sophistication, so I was pleased to see a writing style with this story that exceeded my expectations (Although it wasn’t exactly delicate in its approach and some of the “terminology” and metaphors made me chuckle.) It captures the pole dancing experience in great detail, giving it a sense of being tangible. It also carries the perspective over into the realm of social media–a reflection of real life.

I appreciated the descriptive imagery, covering multiple senses. It allows for a freer transition from the hot physicality of lust to the cold reality…

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Dystopia from the Rock – A “Rock”ing Success!

February 21, 2019 at 2:57 pm (Links, Reviews, writing) (, , , , , )

 

The latest anthology offering from Engen Books, Dystopia from the Rock, is now available.  You can find it on Amazon (Amazon.ca here in Canada) and it has already achieved best-selling status in sci-fi rankings. My story in this anthology, “Cash Grab,” is my second appearance in a “…from the Rock” anthology – I also have a story in Chillers from the Rock, “Territory” – and I have submitted to their latest call (fingers crossed.)  Engen has been a strong supporter of genre writers in Atlantic Canada and their anthologies feature a variety of authors, both new and established.  I highly recommend checking out this book, with all its local charm and flare, and their other offerings as well.

But don’t just take my word (I’m biased, of course.)  Here’s an objective review that also supports what I’ve been saying: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrSwIjnJLFI&t=9s

 

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Chantal Boudreau announced as a ‘Dystopia from the Rock’ author!

January 29, 2019 at 11:44 am (writing)

via Chantal Boudreau announced as a ‘Dystopia from the Rock’ author!

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Winner: “The Price of Beauty” by Ali House | Kit Sora Flash Fiction Photography Contest

January 29, 2019 at 11:43 am (writing)

via Winner: “The Price of Beauty” by Ali House | Kit Sora Flash Fiction Photography Contest

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Book Review: The Mourner’s Cradle by Tommy B. Smith

November 15, 2018 at 5:09 pm (writing)

HorrorAddicts.net

Review – The Mourner’s Cradle by Tommy B. Smith
4 out of 5 stars

By Chantal Boudreau

The Mourner’s Cradleoffers up an exciting start.  After an intriguing prologue, we are introduced to the novel’s protagonist, Anne Sharpe.  The young widow confronts an unwelcome guest at her husband’s funeral and later encounters an intruder at home.  She concludes this is all related to her late spouse’s research into “The Mourner’s Cradle” and sets off to finish what he started.

Her trip to Peru, with associates, Ruben and Raul, is filled with adventure and danger, thanks to run-ins with her husband’s adversaries and hostile terrain.  The story reminded me of a dark blend of Lara Croft meets Indiana Jones, if the tale were set on (and in) a snowy mountain.

For the most part, the novel was a thrilling ride and kept me entertained.  I enjoyed it’s fast pace and plucky…

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Come See Me at Hal-Con!

October 24, 2018 at 9:36 pm (Links, writing) (, , , , , , , , )

Although I won’t be attending the full weekend at Hal-Con, I will be making a couple of appearances on Sunday,  I will be offering up a solo presentation on alternate histories Sunday morning, and participating in the world-building panel put together by the Genre Writers of Atlantic Canada group Sunday afternoon.   Here is a schedule of Jules Verne Phantastical Society-themed and -sponsored presentations and workshops at Hal-Con:

Friday 26 Oct

1:00 p.m. room 501
Flash Fiction Workshop with Genre Writers of Atlantic Canada

2:00 p.m. room 103
Practical costuming with NERO

3:30 p.m. room 501
Tying History to your novel with Grossman and Wendig

[4:00 p.m. room 502
Librarians: the myth, the mystery]

6:00 p.m. room 106
Representation in SF and Fantasy, with Beiko and Little

6:30 p.m. room 501
Frankenstein at 200, with UKC and SMU professors! Happy birthday to the Modern Prometheus.

8:00 p.m. Grand Parade Square
Gothic Halifax Ghost ‘tour’ with Aulenback

Saturday 27 October

12:15 p.m. room 103
Cosplay and Diversity with Akakioga and Knightmage and Hamm

4:15 p.m. room 501
Ask a Linguist with Gardner

5:15 p.m. room 504
Tea Dueling Workshop with Aulenback

6:30 p.m. room 504
Margaret Cavendish’s Blazing World and the beginning of science fiction with Morris

7:00 p.m. room 103
Adding lighting and electronics to cosplay with Clarke and Hirtle

8:00 p.m. level 5 ballroom demo space
Mylar’s Old Time Fashioned Radio Program Showe

Sunday 28 October

10:45 a.m. room 506
Pasts That Never Were with Boudreau

1:00 p.m. room 502
Steampunk and Alternate History with Thompson

2:00 p.m. room 504
Fictional World-building with Genre Writers of Atlantic Canada

4:45 p.m. room 106
Gothic Monsters: Then and Now with DU

If you can be there Friday, as a writer, I highly recommend the GWOAC flash fiction workshop (I helped with one of the handouts) and Tying History to your novel with Grossman and Wendig (I so wish I could attend that one.)

I’m looking forward to seeing some of you there!

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Review – The Green and the Black by William Meikle

October 19, 2018 at 10:26 pm (dark fantasy, horror, Links, Reviews, writing) (, , , , , , , )

When I was growing up, I owned an encyclopedia of fairies that I loved to revisit on a regular basis. My favourites were some of the darker tales from the mines, such as those of the knockers and redcaps. I also had a fascination for rocks – I even joined the Dawson Geology Club in university and ended up a member of the Science Society despite the fact that I was an arts student at the time. For these reasons, and others, this book really spoke to me.

I could relate to the characters in the story, their excitement about the historic site (providing the setting for the story) and being from Atlantic Canada, I could appreciate how well the author described their surroundings. It was almost like venturing out on another geological field trip, abandoning civilization for the deep woods. Along with well-executed scene-setting and atmosphere, I also enjoyed the author’s method of tension-building. In my opinion, there aren’t enough horror stories anymore that do that as well as this one does. There’s too much focus on an intro “hook”, on gore, and on spectacle and not enough on the development of the psychological elements of horror. I prefer the slow build that establishes and then grows a sense of the eerie, so that the reader is given a chance to become invested in both the characters and the story-line before things go terribly wrong.

The only two very minor complaints I have about the book is that I would have preferred more character development for Bill and Doug, who felt a little two-dimensional, and I would have preferred to see at least one female character with a role other than just supporting ones … girlfriend and mother. I can understand the reasoning behind not including women in the field group because there are fewer women studying in those fields, but I can attest to the fact that they do exist and are becoming more common. I have female friends who are geologists, engineers, archeologists and botanists and they have done fieldwork. I think the added diversity would have been nice (but this is strictly a personal preference.)

This book was a quick, chilling, and entertaining read with an intriguing combination of the historic and the supernatural. Definitely worth my time and highly enjoyable. I would recommend it to horror and dark fantasy fans alike.

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Book Review: The Dark is Full of Monsters by Edward P. Cardillo

September 6, 2018 at 3:27 pm (writing)

HorrorAddicts.net

Review – The Dark is Full of Monsters by Edward P. Cardillo

By Chantal Boudreau

I love horror with monsters, supernatural…mutant…human monsters–it doesn’t matter–so I dove into this book really hoping I would enjoy it.  The premise did intrigue me–a ragtag group of inhabitants from a sleepy little town venture into the woods seeking a local urban legend cryptoid monster after a series of strange occurrences including a close encounter with the monster and the kidnapping of a neighborhood boy.  It had the makings of a good story.

Unfortunately, while it had a lot to offer, it didn’t quite hit the mark with me, but it might work for other readers out there.  I found character intro and development a little thin and that’s the most important aspect for me in a book.  The writing style was at times repetitive (for example far too many of the paragraphs began with…

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Summer Update – A Reading and More

August 24, 2018 at 3:21 am (horror, writing) (, , , , , )

I know I’ve been quiet this summer, but as usual, increased hours at work, outdoor activities and my garden has forced me into a bit of a blog hiatus. I do have a few things to mention.

Coming up this weekend, Sunday the 26th to be exact, I’m participating in Hal-Con’s reading series at the Halifax Central Library. The readings start at two in room 301 and I’ll be sharing an excerpt from “The Hack-Jack Prospect,” a cyberpunk fairy-tale mashup that was originally published in the Young Adventurers: Heroes, Explorers & Swashbucklers from Intrigue Publishing. Room. This will be the second session and this one is with guest, Elaine McCluskey. If you can make it, I hope to see you there.

My noir superhero story, “Amnesty” is now available in print in Crimson Streets #3. My horror story, “Scuttle” is akso available in the Abandon anthology, both released earlier this year.

And perhaps for future reference. I may be participating in as many as three presentations/panels ar Hal-Con proper this year. I’ll only be atteding on the Sunday, so we’ll see how things work out.

More news in the fall…

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Book Review: Naraka by Alessandro Manzetti

July 19, 2018 at 3:25 pm (writing)

HorrorAddicts.net

Naraka is not a novel, it’s an experience – a graphic, chaotic, mind-blowing experience.

It is not an experience intended for those faint of heart.  It is at times gory to an extreme, it is constantly profane, and sex is used more often as a weapon or a form of abuse or torture than for pleasure.  It focuses on cannibalism and the downfall of civilization.

But what else would you expect from a story about a woman who starts out life as a prostitute turned professional killer who is caught and sent to a prison on the moon where prisoners are used as meat, scientific subjects in genetic experiments or breeding stock to make more of the former and the latter.  It presents the reader with social commentary on what becomes of a society that has been deregulated to the point where crime is rampant, people act out of desperation…

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