Barry’s mailbox

monsterfiles

I received a copy of Nick Redfern’s “Monster Files.” Expect to see this title land in your favorite bookstores around May 22nd. If you don’t have a local bookstore that you patronize, you can grab a copy from Amazon — Monster Files: A Look Inside Government Secrets and Classified Documents on Bizarre Creatures and Extraordinary Animals

Does the Pentagon have the body of Bigfoot on ice?
What is the U.S. military hiding from us about lake monsters?
What is the link between the CIA and the abominable snowman?
Why is there a British government file on sea serpents?
What do the Russians know about animal ESP?

For decades there have been persistent rumors, tales, and legends that government agencies all around the world have been secretly collecting and studying data on bizarre beasts, amazing animals, and strange

creatures.

Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, sea serpents, psychic pets, the chupacabras, and the abominable snowman have all attracted official, classified interest.

Now, for the first time, the full, fearsome facts are finally revealed in Nick Redfern’s Monster Files.

You’ll discover all the amazing cryptozoological truths, conspiracies, and cover-ups behind the secret studies by the Pentagon, the Kremlin, and the British military, among many others.

Despite what your parents might have told you when you were a child, monsters, creepy creatures, and terrifying beasts really do exist. And our governments know all about them.

I’ll try to shoot a clip of me thumbing through the pages before the book comes out. Looks like another fine book from Redfern!

Risen and Bones Giveaway

Gnostalgia-Giveaway2013

I have rolled the dice and the grand-prize winner of the “Risen” and “Bones” giveaway is Debby Reagan from Maine.

My winner of a copy of “Bones” went to Victoria of Pennsylvania!

I’ve emailed the winners and copied and pasted the mailing addresses of the winners to Elizabeth Watasin.

I want to thank everyone who entered the contest, it was a blast. Of course, major thanks to Elizabeth Watasin for donating the prizes.

I loved all of the comments about the skull in the picture.No, I don’t own one even though I used the picture of it  in my banner last year. I’ll provide a link in my side-bar to Amazon where you can purchase one.

Cover Art: Dream London

dream-london-by-tony-ballantyne-501x750

Beautiful cover for “Dream London.” Dream London will be published on 29th October, 2013 — just in time for Halloween.

Captain Jim Wedderburn has looks, style and courage by the bucketful. He’s adored by women, respected by men and feared by his enemies. He’s the man to find out who has twisted london into this strange new world, and he knows it. But in Dream london the city changes a little every night and the people change a little every day. the towers are growing taller, the parks have hidden themselves away and the streets form themselves into strange new patterns. there are people sailing in from new lands down the river, new criminals emerging in the east end and a path spiralling down to another world. Everyone is changing, no one is who they seem to be.

Review: Steampunk Magic: Working Magic Aboard the Airship

steampunk magicSteampunk Magic:
Working Magic Aboard the Airship
by Gypsey Elaine Teague

Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Weiser Books
ISBN-10: 157863539X
ISBN-13: 978-1578635399

My thoughts:

Page 28

The other Grandmaster of steampunk, Jules Verne is probably known for the Nautilus and Captain Nemo in Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea with War of the Worlds coming in a close second.

No, War of the Worlds was written by H.G. Wells, if you can’t properly identify the works of a “Grandmaster of steampunk” how can we trust your knowledge of either steampunk or magic?

The entire book has that look and feel of “gluing gears on it and calling it steampunk.” Ironically, the book begins with a Crowley quote, “To me a book is a message from the Gods to mankind, or if not, it should never be published at all.” I think that this one lands in the “should never be published” category.

It seems to me that most of  the steampunk material can be found with a simple Google search. For example, a list of conventions can be found on this blog. I wanted to like it, but I just don’t see the bang for the buck in this book.

Give this one a pass … 2 stars out of 5.

Review: The Dark Victorian: Bones

Gnostalgia-Giveaway2013The Dark Victorian: Bones
by Elizabeth Watasin

Paperback: 448 pages
Publisher: A-Girl Studio
ISBN-10: 1936622033
ISBN-13: 978-1936622030

(Barry’s score 5 out of 5 stars)
Buy a copy at Amazon:
The Dark Victorian: Bones (Volume 2)
Kindle Ebook

Product description:

“I am made of this.” In a Victorian mechanical and eldritch London, a black arts surgeon is ripping out the bones and organs of healthy poor folk to transplant into the afflicted bodies of the wealthy. Anti-vivisectionists battle with medical doctors, medical doctors condemn supernatural practitioners, and amidst it all the Bone Stealer hunts for his most elusive prize yet: the skeleton of a woman over six feet tall. Secret Commission agents Art, the artificial ghost, and Jim Dastard, the animated skull, rush to stop him before another woman dies. And Art, only six days living after being resurrected to serve the Secret Commission, might be that woman.

My thoughts:

Another enjoyable read from Elizabeth Watasin. As you may have taken away from my earlier reviews, I love dark Victorian stories and Watasin knows how to tell a dark tale.

Smoke grew thick in the afternoon air of London. Airships sailed, one after the other, in the skies above the fog and ash while the streets below congested noisily with omnibuses, cabs, and wagons.

Once again, we follow the exploits of  Art (an artificial ghost) and Jim Dastard (an animated skull) as they battle evil in Victorian England. While this book is the second in a series,  The Dark Victorian: Bones really stands on it’s own. Having said that, I do suggest reading The Dark Victorian: Risen and I think reading the “Author’s Notes” in the back of the book will help with the setting and the characters.

In addition to the wealth of information about the world of the “Dark Victorian” series, the author tackles the subject of unconventional sexual relationships head-on. I think we can learn a lot from the character “Art.”

All in all, I give The Dark Victorian: Bones 5 animated skulls out of 5. I think that it is a must-have for your steampunk home library and for those of you who are still on the fence I have only two words for you — squid battle!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author Elizabeth Watasin. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”