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When the Devil Climbs by Drake Vaughn

Devil ClimbsThe one thing we learn in life is that our choices can lead us down a multitude of directions. We can choose to take a specific talent and apply it and make a name for ourselves. We can also choose that it would be too hard and have life take us in a different direction. There are times that we may rush to judgment and the results could be disastrous. This would be the case of one Russ Grote who will see his life go in a direction he never expected. He will find himself with an ex-wife, going to prison, a son he never sees and worse stuck working with other ex-convicts.

This is the life he will be leading as someone opens “When the Devil Climbs” by Drake Vaughn. The book opens with Russ having a conversation with his ex-wife and how he is looking so forward with reconnecting with his son. Russ is even able to primarily ignore his coworker, Harley, as he adds some commentary to things going on as they wait for the boss Slake to arrive. Victor, another coworker shows up and the crew of three ex-cons gets their day started as they load up to go change out the billboard on a large road sign.

The reader will come to understand that this is one of the few jobs that are willing to hire ex-cons. As you get an introduction into each character you may be very thankful they don’t work with you. On the hand you may even know someone who acts like any of these “fine” gentlemen. Russ is at least working on some of his demons as he has gotten help and the others, well. To give you an idea on the others Slake is one quick to action and will find quick to anger as he is the boss of this crew. Harley he is an old timer with no sort of political correctness and enjoys tormenting the new guy on the team, Victor. As the new guy, Victor, will get razzed but he is also Hispanic and there are plenty of off color jokes directed his way by the ignorant Harley.  It will surely make for an interesting work crew and for an eye opening day.

The problem for these men is they have come to fight the law and there decision will haunt them for the remainder of their lives. As they come across a police cruiser and are told to turn they are given an option from life. They could listen or try some stupid stunt. The choice, you may have guessed it, is stupid stunt and they drive around the cruiser to head to their job.  It is not long after this when ominous dust clouds in the dry ground show in the distance and trouble is coming and these four men are going to find out man is not always the key of the food chain. They will learn that even they can become a great meal for something man feasts on around the world.

When the Devil Climbs will really jump into action at this point in the book. The men will see the dust storm and realize it is actually a large group of pigs running wild. Harvey, who stays on the ground to watch the trucks, even will try to play with one of the pigs as they get close. He will find out to late that this group has more on its mind then running free as they are hungry and man is now the “other white meat”.   It won’t be long from this point when the remaining three high on the billboard platform watch in horror as Harley is devoured by the creatures and they realize they are trapped.

The book will see the three remaining men struggle with each other at first. It will not be long before they run out of water, and food and this will lead to self struggles as the mind becomes their enemy as well. Author Drake Vaughn shows a great gift for delving into the mind and characters of each of these men. Their backgrounds and natures will be slowly revealed as they stay trapped up on that billboard platform hoping, and praying, for some help. What will make matters even worse is when help appears to becoming their arrival; well one must read the book.

The truth is that, When the Devil Climbs, does a great job of character development as well as setting the stage for a very psychological horror story. There are moments when we get to read how the pigs fast but in truth it felt to me much of the horror comes as these men realize the trouble they are in and must determine how to react in the face of this danger. This is why I opened the review by pointing out life choices as each man made a choice that somehow lead to them being there at that moment in time when their lives may end.

I must add that for a great book trailer head over to Drake Vaughn’s website and enjoy.

 

 
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Posted by on May 12, 2016 in Reviews

 

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What’s coming in 2015 and Thank You 2014

ThankYouThe year of 2014 has been an exciting one as I was able to read over twenty books and post reviews on the blog.  The greatest thing is that often an author, or publisher, has reached out to me regarding their book. This to me is exciting and helps to show that I am reaching the right audience with the reviews.  The audience I refer to is those people who look for authors, publishers and books that often fly under the mainstream market place. My eyes, and then fingers, help put out a forum for their books and draw attention to their works through my reviews. The word reviews is used as I don’t just put them on my blog but cross post to Amazon and just recently all went up on Goodreads as well.

These individuals produce books that are just as engaging as a Stephen King,  Stephanie Myer, Suzanne Collins and other well-known authors.  They bring imagination to life which is what I believe many authors endeavor to do with their readers. The pages can be digital, or physical, but have the same effect no matter how you read. It is why I write this post as I want to thank those that helped my imagination over the past year. I hope my review helped other readers find their books and enjoy them as much as I have. This is the main reason on why I never say NO to a review request.

Before I start with listing and thanking those who gave me the great opportunity of discovering a new world through their prose let me share with you what I have coming for 2015.  As you will see the list is growing and it’s how I want it to be.

Upcoming in 2015 in no particular order:

 

  • Playback Effect by Karen A Wyle
  • Glimpses of the Undead by Julianne Snow
  • The Last Bucelarii (Book 1): Blade of the Destroyer by Andy Peloquin
  • Thunder Bay by Robert Reynolds
  • Why 319 by Mark Love
  • Counting Churches The Malta Stories by Rosanne Dingli

 

 

Now it’s time to thank those authors, and publishers, for the books I enjoyed over 2014. The list is in order of reviews from most recent to beginning of the year. If I missed anyone it was not on purpose but a MAJOR oversite on my part.

 THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR A GREAT 2014

 

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2014 in Reviews

 

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The Carvings Collection by Author Drake Vaughn

Carvings CollectionDrake Vaughn is the author of the book The Zombie Generation which took the reader into a unique look at the Zombie genre. It was a book that had readers wanting to “sink their teeth” into other books by the author.

Vaughn has come out with another full book called The Carvings Collection but this book is different. It’s not a full tale but instead a collection of short stories you could believe were “carved” out of the man’s mind. Stories that go deep into different genres of horror from real life to the paranormal can be found within the pages.

The book has ten different and distinct stories that will surely find an audience for the genre covered. It is more impressive that the stories are done in such a manner that they will appeal to different readers and some may have you asking for more.

The book starts with the story, “Dolls”, which fittingly talks about a young girl and her dolls. The story introduces the reader to a girl who has an interesting life. She lives with her father, his grandmother and her father’s new girl.  A seemingly innocent arrangement till you read how the young girl has been treated. So is it any wonder that suddenly a doll starts speaking to her? The fact the doll has seemed to learn some of the things the young girl has seen cannot be too healthy and well the story will have to tell the rest.

The reader then can read a story about a woman afraid of cars in the story, “Driver’s Seat”. You learn why she’s afraid of cars and the problems that came from that event. The reader then finds out about the dangers of skipping class to get high and running from authority in, “Master Key”.

The story, “In the Chair”, will be the next entry into the book. This one tells the story of a man persecuted for fulfilling the dying wishes of his mother. Those wishes are to help her dye after treatment for her cancer seems to have not worked. The problem after the news breaks of what he has allowed, and the court is done with him, someone else feels justice needs to be done. This person will take, what seems to be pleasure, in distributing his own justice. This involves tying the “killer” to a chair and slowly starving him much as his mother must have felt.  Does he escape, or does justice get done?

The book follows with “Carvings”, where a man’s dreams may be coming to life as those who have harmed him begin dying around him.

Sales” is the sixth entry in the collection and deals with a salesman who may have bit on more than he can chew.  He is hired to break into a penthouse apartment and may find out he may have under estimated the owner and is going to be, well read to find out.

The Garden” tells of how it’s not nice to destroy and vandalize a man’s garden. You never know what could be hidden within all those plants, and how the owner will react.  You could find out that some take their “gardens” very seriously.

The Test” is one story that seems to be perfect for today’s world. It could almost be said it was somewhat ripped from the headlines. A prank goes very bad and someone ends up dead after the prank.

The reader will then get to “Trip to V-Town” which is a story of how the poor kids want to visit the upscale tracks of town. The problem this cities other side is that which belongs to Vampires. Those involved in evading V-town will create some just horrific acts on those who live there. Some of these are not safe for little children, just as they children are not safe in V-Town.

The final story is one called “Flatheads” and has nothing to do with a screwdriver or a haircut. The story instead talks about the flathead worm. The worm can get up to 4 to 10 inches in length depending on the type of flathead. In this story they get to be a bit longer in size. No they don’t get to 2 feet in length, you got to think BIGGER. Try imagining so large they are now the dominant life form. They are so dominant that in this new world they use humans as hosts for their infants. This of course does not look well for humanity and this story takes you into a small group who is trying to survive. The problem they share their home with the flatheads and this cannot be a good thing.

Just as the titles of the stories the subjects are just as diverse. The stories range from the scary to the just down right creepy. They are not always safe for children so I suggest parents take a moment to read the stories before giving them out to their children. They are not overly to dangerous for a young mind, but enough it could bring up some uncomfortable questions.

The simple truth is that The Carvings Collection is a book of tales that will keep any reader interested.  You may find yourself skipping a story to jump to another but you must make sure to read them all. I say that as this is a carved collection from Drake Vaughn that no matter how you fell is a great full meal for the mind.

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2014 in Reviews

 

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The Zombie Generation by Drake Vaughn

 The Zombie Generation is a book that will take you into the world, and mind, of Warner. He’s possibly one of the remaining lone survivors that has lasted a zombie apocalypse that has ravaged the United States and potentially the world.

Warner lives on the West Coast where the infection started. He was able to survive the original infection by using his works bunker like facility for a hiding place. Eventually he was forced to travel and find a new home and eventually came across a home setup in the hills with quite the setup.

This house has everything one would need to withstand a disaster and more importantly this is where Warner finds his love, Pam. She is described as a beautiful woman that Warner will do anything for to make her happy. He will go on raids into town to find her shampoo and clothing to fit her demands. The problem is that Pam herself is afraid to set foot outside of the house and thus Warner takes all the risks.

In truth as you read the book you find a lot about who Warner is, or was, as a person. He is plagued by his figs, figments of his imagination, that will berate him in his mind. The key one of these figs is that of his father who points out a lot of Warner’s flaws and that of the generation Warner grew up within. In fact the generation described could almost be a Zombie Generation without the infection that took humanity.

Drake Vaughn, the author, seems to have an ability to get into the head of his main character. The way in which the story goes along we see a small growth in this man. He has lived possibly a year or more with very slim human companionship and it’s taking its taking its toll on the man. To top this up he is consistently having to watch out for the buggers, zombies.

This is another factor of the book that Vaughn does so well. He explains how the Zombie infestation drove across the United States. Vaughn goes as far as telling the reader how the government tried to battle the infestation. The things the government tried to feed the troops, and survivors out in the infected zones until the infection finally reached the East Coast and Washington D.C.

The Zombie Generation is a complex story with an equally complex lead character. The setting being a Zombie apocalypse adds to the story line in such a way the setting is so important. Vaughn sets the picture of how the zombies work together and their general mannerisms. These zombies maybe close to those seen in other books but have some unique qualities that it adds a great element to the story.

Overall, I enjoyed reading The Zombie Generation and at times could relate to the main character. His life had changed so dramatically from being a work-a-holic to pay the bills to a man fending for his own life.  It’s not just the world that went crazy but there is a good chance Warner went with that world.

 
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Posted by on July 18, 2012 in Reviews

 

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