Dusk’s Warriors

The vampires of Night’s Knights are living in a new plane of existence that they’re not use to and once again everything is about to change for them. Ridge is a man working for the devil and he’s gathering souls from immortals living on earth. When he attacks Markham’s significant other Jimmy, it causes a chain reaction. An epic battle between Heaven and Hell begins and a street gang of vigilantes may be the deciding factor on who wins.

Dusk’s Warriors by Emerian Rich is a sequel to Night’s Knights but it can be read as a stand alone novel. The foundation was given in the first book but this one takes the story to the next level. It describes the mythical realms that the characters now live in but also focuses on what’s happening on earth and introduces a new cast of characters. Among them are Ridge who is hunted by the Drog and working for the devil and Zack who doesn’t really know his place in the world and unknowingly follows Ridge into .Hell. The story starts off with a bang beginning in Hell as Ridge gets his orders from The devil. I loved how the settings in the story are described and the opening of the book had me hooked.

There are several good characters here but my favorite in this book is Reidar, a vampire who has taken it upon himself to chronicle what happens among all the vampires and the different realms of Heaven. I loved how he describes his feelings for Severina the Goddess of dusk and what he does to deal with his unrequited love. He has the best scenes in the story such as when he enters a man’s dream in order to remove the man’s mental anguish. He quickly learns that some things can’t be helped.

I also loved The Drog in this story. They’re a street gang of vigilantes that believes they work for the chosen one. In one good scene members of The Drog confronts people working for the National Organization of Supernatural Specialists. They state that by studying evil that the Noss themselves are evil which leads into a great battle scene. I loved how the characters are so complex and even the ones that you look at as good have a dark side.

Dusk’s Warriors is A world of horror with realistic characters in a fast paced thriller you won’t be able to put down. That’s not all though because this book can also be considered a dark fantasy, it also has a couple of good love stories, some erotica(Ever want to read a book where a woman grows a penis? you got to check this one out) and a vividly described battle between heaven and hell. Don’t go into this book thinking it’s just a vampire book because it’s more complex than that. Emerian Rich has created a universe where horror and fantasy mix together and everyone in it is a shade of grey. This book is a must read.

http://emerianrich.com/

 

 

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Dusk’s Warriors by Emerian Rich

Because David is such a fan of Markham in the Night’s Knights series, I’ve decided to share an excerpt from the new book, Dusk’s Warriors, where Markham is battling Hellhounds. It also involves Minidoo, a Canadian Ojibawe Indian who is a new character in this sequel.

Excerpt from Dusk’s Warriors:

A gust blew off Markham’s hat and he tripped over a tree root, pitching forward and landing face-first. Snow pushed up his nose and into his mouth. It was clean, but stung like the blazes.

Markham stood and brushed himself off. He covered his mouth and nose, breathing heavily to clear the coldness from his skin. Hearing a rustle in the woods, he pressed against a nearby tree, trying to blend in to the forest. The trees were dense and as he watched in the direction of the noise, a doe galloped past him about two yards away. After the doe, a woman dressed in furs, long black twin braids flying out behind her, sprinted past. Her head snapped in his direction, but she kept moving. Markham followed cautiously behind, watching the woman grab the doe and sink her canines into its neck. The doe made a yelp when caught, but then was still. The woman drank of her prey, concentrating on the animal. Markham kept his distance, knowing not to approach a vampire while feeding. The woman’s eyes flew open, her mouth still connected to the doe.

As Markham was about to step out and introduce himself, he heard Ridge approach. He could read his thoughts before he saw him.

Kill the girl, get free. Kill the girl, get the money. Never have to go to Hell again, Ridge thought.

Whe nesh na baa?” the girl asked, and Markham thought she spoke to him, but she looked past him, to the right. Her eyes narrowed, a cold dark stare as if she would kill with a mere look. “Annish mampee enna kian sha ganosh?” She stood, blood trailing onto her white furs as she whipped her two long braids from her face.

“Listen,” Ridge said as he stepped into view, a gun trained on the girl. “I don’t understand your gobble-de-gook. If you’re gonna threaten me, do it in English.”

“Who are you to come on this land, in a forest of peace to dishonor the ancestors of the people?” she asked, clear and confident with only a slight accent.

“Glad you asked. My name’s Ridge. You are?”

“Minidoo. I belong here. You do not.”

“Look Mini, I really have nothing against you, but I made a deal and you are my way to freedom. So stand real still like…” He fired his gun. The shots missed and Minidoo had Ridge in a head lock before he could blink.

“Who sent you?” She lifted him off the ground, his neck still in the crook of her forearm as she floated upwards.

“Put…me…down…God damnit!” Ridge struggled against her, grunting and kicking back at her. “All right, no more Mr. Nice Guy.” Ridge took something from his pocket and put it too his mouth.

Minidoo dropped him, screeching and covering her ears. Markham didn’t hear anything, but it seemed to work on the poor girl.

“What is it?” she yelled.

“Hell whistle.”

Markham could stand by no longer, he stepped between them, his back to Minidoo.

“Ridge, your torture stops here.”

“Markham O’Leary! Two for the price of one. Imagine my luck!” Despite his cocky humor, Markham could see doubt in his mind. Can the Hell whistle defeat two strong immortals? Will I live to collect my money?

From the woods came a howl so horrific, it couldn’t be a normal wolf. A mangy set of dogs came out of the woods.

“Hmmm…in all my days, I ain’t never seen a hellhound so ugly. Glad he’s on my side. Go get ‘em killer.” Ridge smiled self-righteously.

The animals didn’t seem to be “hounds” exactly, but the Hell part Markham believed. They were giant wooly dogs, almost bear like. At first it looked like they were chained together by twos, but the closer they got, he realized they were attached in the middle like mutant Siamese twins, each having four legs and a separate head, but combined in a wide body. Brown in color, their fur seemed to undulate as if it was liquid. Their eyes were deep crevices where eyeballs should’ve been. When they snarled, deadly sharp teeth and skeletal jaws dripped with blood.

Have you encountered this sort of beast before? Minidoo asked Markham silently.

No, you? Markham asked.

No.

Dusk’s Warriors by Emerian Rich

Heaven has opened up and welcomed the vampires of Night’s Knights into a new reality. As they struggle to find their place in their new world, trouble brews on Earth.

Demon servant, Ridge, is causing havoc by gathering up all the souls on Earth that have been touched by immortality. When he injures one of the Night’s Knights crew, he launches a war between the vampires of Heaven, the Big Bad in Hell, and a mortal street gang of vigilante misfits.

Will Julien, Markham, and Reidar be able to defeat the evil that’s returned, or will they once again need Jespa’s help?

Praise for Dusk’s Warriors:

“All hail, the queen of Night’s Knights has returned! Emerian Rich’s unique take on vampires delights my black little heart.” ~Dan Shaurette, Lilith’s Love

 

“A world of horror with realistic characters in a fast paced thriller you won’t be able to put down.”

~David Watson, The All Night Library

 

Praise for Night’s Knights:

“Fresh, original, and thoroughly entertaining.” ~Mark Eller, Traitor

 

“Emerian brought the Vampire Novel back from the dead.” ~C. E. Dorsett, Shine Like Thunder

Emerian Rich was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado in 1973, the only child of pastors. She lived in thirty-two different places by the time she graduated high school. With no siblings and no consistent peer relationships, the pen became an integral part of her life, granting her an inexpensive pastime that she could take with her anywhere. The characters in her stories became her friends and her journal, her only continuous confidant.

Emerian graduated The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco, California with an A.A. in Visual Presentation and Space Design. She has been a consultant on window design, store merchandising, web design projects, company logos, event planning and decoration, newsletter production, and has been voice acting since 2008.

Emerian began her non-profit zine, Dark Lives, in 1997. Her goal was to give unpublished talent in the horror genre a place to have their work published and enjoyed. Originally began as a paper publication, Dark Lives became exclusively a webzine in 2002. darklives.com officially closed it’s doors at the end of 2007.

Emerian now serves as Horror Hostess for the internationally acclaimed podcast, HorrorAddicts.net.
HorrorAddicts.net has become not only a podcast but a widely read publisher of horror news, reviews, and fiction.

Emerian has been a part of many social and business groups including: The Katz (Supernatural Investigators), Wicked Women Writers, Mad Hatter Tea Society, Quillz Literary Group, and others. She is also an active volunteer for the following causes: Clean The Beach Days, Earth Day, Oil Clean Up Education, Service to Elders, Children’s Day Camp, Community Support for Abused Children, and Activities for the Developmentally Disabled.

She has also written under the names: Emerian Mordrige, E. Mordrige, Emmy Z. Madrigal and Emz.

Emerian lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son. To meet Emerian, check out her events.

http://www.emzbox.com/

Dracula Transformed & Other Bloodthirsty Tales

I enjoy reading all kinds of books but the ones I enjoy the most are the ones that have a good mix of horror and comedy. This is not a combination you can always find but Dracula Transformed & Other Bloodthirsty Tales by  Mark McLaughlin and Michael McCarty is one of those books that can scare you and make you laugh. Here we have ten short stories and one novella which puts Dracula in the present day with new powers that we’ve never seen before.

The reason I wanted to read this was because I love Dracula and any movie or book that has the character catches my interest. Also I’m familiar with the work of both authors and knew it would be a fun ride. Right off the bat in the first story they address one of the issues with the original Dracula novel. In Bram Stoker’s novel we get points of view from several characters but we don’t hear much from Dracula. In Lucy Transformed we hear part of the story in Dracula’s own words via letters to his daughter. Needless to say Dracula looks at the events of the book a little differently than the other characters do. Maybe Dracula wasn’t a villain after all and just doing what vampires are supposed to do.

Two other the stories that stick out in the book are Dracula Has Risen From The Couch and Incident In The Back Of A Black Limousine. In the first story set in the present we see a very different Dracula then we are used to. He is kind of lazy and he finds out his wives are cheating on him, but he doesn’t really care enough to get off the couch until they decide to kill him. In the second story also in the present we see Dracula has fallen on hard times and now works as a pimp calling himself Big Daddy. For both of these we see a Dracula that we haven’t seen before and get to laugh at the idea that Dracula may not fare to well in the modern world.

In what is the main event in this little anthology, we have the novella Dracula Transformed which shows us Dracula resurrected in the present by a cult and given the powers of the monsters from Greek Mythology. All of the characters from Dracula are here through reincarnation and Van Helsing never died. I love that Dracula gets his power from hearing the sins of others and I loved hearing that Renfield is now a goth rock superstar. We also have another character from history that is still making a good living in Las Vegas. The best part though is hearing how Dracula acts when he hears someone talk who has no sin.

Dracula Transformed is a must read if you loved the Bram Stoker book or any of the various movies that have had Dracula in them over the years. Not only is it a fresh spin on a character that has been around for over 100 years, it’s a lot of fun for anyone who has a love for monsters and mythology. My only complaint was that some of the short stories contained an idea but no real story and I would have liked the main story to be longer and have a little more suspense. All in all though the book is a lot of fun and I look forward to reading more from both authors.

Hunter Of The Dead

31306024There are more vampires in the world then anyone knows about. The most powerful vampire in the world is Cicatrice and he secretly rules the city of Las Vegas. The vampires are being killed off though and not just by the vampire hunters who have pledged their lives to destroy the undead. There is a supernatural serial killer on the loose and Cicatrice believes it could be the legendary and ancient Hunter Of The Dead.

A vampire civil war has begun and when there are too many vampires in the same area the hunter of the dead rises to destroy all supernatural creatures. Cicatrice decides the best way to handle it is to team up with vampire hunter Carter Price. Together they form a plan that will kill several vampires and put an end to the Hunter Of The Dead. With a bloody vampire war in full swing and Cicatrice and Carter’s apprentices falling in love, stopping the hunter may be an impossible task.

Hunter Of The Dead by Stephen Kozeniewski is a blood drenched treat for vampire fans. This horror novel creates a great spin on vampire mythology and has some great action scenes. The mythology behind the hunter is fascinating and the way he is described in this book makes him sound like he could make the four horseman run away in fear. The prologue to this book is like a self-contained story that really hooks you into reading the full book. The imagery is creepy with scenes like a ghoul eating someone and a battle  between vampires and the hunter which is beautifully done. The beginning of this book would make a great horror film.

The problem I had with this book was that there was too much going on. There was enough material in this book for three books and I didn’t like how the story kept switching to different locations, characters and time periods. What I liked most was the relationship between Cicatrice and his apprentice Idi-Han and Carter Price and his assistant Nico. Whenever the focus changed to someone else I was just wanting to get back to those four. There was also a romantic relationship between Nico and Idi that could have been good but seemed too rushed. I enjoyed this book but I felt it would have been better if it just focused on Idi, Cicatrice, Nico and Carter dealing with the hunter and left out the civil war and  vampire politics.

Hunter Of The Dead has the feel of a comic book. What I mean is you can easily visualize the action in your head and the story moves along at the speed of a freight train. Stephen Kozeniewski does an excellent job describing violent battle scenes. I loved how the vampires do severe damage to each other such as breaking bones and crushing organs only to heal instantly. It also has some good humor to it such as when a human tied to a table is offered as a birthday cake to a vampire who takes a bite and then offers all the other vampires a bite. It also has some moments of great horror such as when a recently turned vampire realizes that she is eating her father without knowing it. Hunter Of The Dead is a book that vampire fans should not pass up.

Cause Of Death: Unnatural

17702761There are a lot of different takes on vampires. In Cause Of Death:Unnatural by Eliza Ford, the lead character is a vampire and a forensic pathologist.  She is like no vampire that I’ve ever read about. Usually when I hear about a book that has a vampire in it I would think it was a horror novel. but Cause Of Death is more of an urban fantasy mystery with some horror elements.

Em is a 1000 year old vampire who has decided to live among humans. She belongs to a clan called The Family which are some of the oldest beings on Earth. Em and the vampires like her, can use dark matter and they are superior to common vampires who only drink blood and they are far superior to other dark creatures. Em is half human so she feels more comfortable living among humans. To sustain herself Em  drinks the occasional pint of blood along with eating human souls but she can eat human food as well.

No human knows she is a vampire and the job as forensic pathologist is the perfect job for someone who knows death so well.  Lately Em has been investigating some dead bodies that were found near a Night Club that just opened. She finds that the Night Club is operated by a vampire who was a former lover of her father. To make matters worse, Em’s former lover Jarek has come to town to look into the vampire owned Night Club and hopefully lure Em back to him. Em has to find the killer and decide if she wants to keep living among the humans.

Cause Of Death: Unnatural is an original look at vampires. I liked how there were different classes of vampires and I liked the idea that there was a different realm that the beings who used dark matter can live in. I thought it was interesting that Em was in a love triangle with two humans while also trying to decide if she wants to go live with Jarek in the dark matter realm. Another thing that I liked was when Em describes what vampires look for in humans and says some are hamburger and some are steak.

My favorite part of the book was when Em finds a cancer cell in a family member of a friend  and  is able to kill the cell with her dark matter, she then gives her views on how she feels about humans. There was also a fight scene with Jarek that was excellent. The characters in this book were great and the story was well told but it could have been better.

I would have liked to hear more about Em’s vampire family, it is touched on but more detail would have been nice. I also wanted to know more about how dark matter worked. The story itself was good but a little predictable and the final fight scene wasn’t long enough but I did like her revelation on why she loved humans so much. Even though I had my issues with this book I still liked it and would like to see more of these characters. This is the first book in a series, I like the concept and I get the impression it will get better as it goes along.