Archive for December, 2009

Sinister Reads ~ November/December 2009

Posted in New Releases on December 25, 2009 by ahwasinisterreads

That’s right, we’re cramming two months worth of new horror into one just in time for the excess season! So take the batteries out of the obnoxious toy your mother-in-law bought for your kids, wave at the teenagers now ignoring you from between their iPod headphones, and pull on the new Daffy Duck socks your brother gave you as we bring you fresh fiction on the bone.

Now, if you could be so kind as to lower that carving knife… just a little perhaps?

From the team at Sinister Reads, we’d like to thank you for your support over this past year as we got ball rolling. It’s been a pleasure to bring you new Australian horror as it pours from their brain and into your hands. We look forward to doing it again in 2010 ~ bigger and better, and if the budget allows, with 20% more bloodshed!

Have a happy and safe festive season!


Dead America

by Luke Keioskie

Severed Press

ISBN: 9780980606522

RRP: $32.99 US

Available from: Ingram Books and Amazon

Life’s tough in America. Especially when you’re dead.

Faraday thought finding a runaway girl would be easy money. But when the girl turns up dead – the first person in decades who hasn’t relived as a zombie – Faraday must hit the streets to find her killer.

Standing in his way are zombie gangbangers, a police force rife with bigotry and lifism, and the undead crimelord of Harlem. But with the help of a necrophilic pathologist, a severed head named Dorothy, and a reporter that would literally give her right arm for a story, Faraday must discover why the dead girl didn’t come back to life. And he better be quick before the animosity between the living and the dead sparks a riot that could burn New York City to the ground.

Welcome to Dead America. Land of the dead and home of the grave.




~ Pre-order ~ Savage Menace and other poems of horror

by Richard L. Tierney

Illustrated by Andrew McKiernan

P’rea Press

Release date: January 2010

ISBN: 9780980462555

RRP: $35.00 AU (Hardcover)

Available from: P’rea Press

Welcome to SAVAGE MENACE AND OTHER POEMS OF HORROR by Richard L. Tierney. Herein you’ll find poems of delectable horror and exquisite savagery and dread. RL “Terminator” Tierney does not hold back from touching on the ghoulish rhythms of decadence and fright that live at the back of all our universes. Make no mistake, horror fantasy lives appallingly in this majestic book of heightened poetic magic and feasts of delirious verse. SM, lavishly illustrated by Australia’s own Andrew McKiernan, will have you kneeling, groveling, and praying at the shrines of Poe and Lovecraft to make it all go away … And it won’t necessarily. Great poetry is never an acquired taste but the presence of mind to go one step further. So be brave, be very brave. Down the dark gruesome corridors of this splendid book’s succulent steps and primeval by-ways you always go one mad step further. Might you look back and see how far you’ve gone? O amazing mazy labyrinth. You may have lost the Minotaur’s thread…


If there is a finer poet in the tradition of Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard, I don’t know of one. Tierney has a vision as cosmic and savage as any of theirs, and his expressive skills are enviable indeed.” Ramsey Campbell

Richard L. Tierney has achieved a distinguished corpus of work in the fields of imaginative literature not just as a distinctive fictioneer but equally as a disciplined and unique poet forging ahead in traditional forms. The genre and shape are lyrical but the vision is epic and heroic, not to mention cosmic.” Donald Sidney-Fryer

In his poetry there is not a word out of place, not a line that is other than musical, not a stanza that cannot be considered a triumph of quiet eloquence. In his poems Richard L. Tierney exhibits the quintessence of his multifaceted literary gifts.” S. T. Joshi

There is no other present-day poet in the entire Lovecraftian galaxy who treasures to quite the same extent as does Richard Tierney the fabulous valleys and high mountain peaks of fantasy, or who has captured their splendors with a greater perceptiveness.” Frank Belknap Long

Richard L. Tierney has ramped respect as one of the premier poets of the macabre in modern times. His finesse is spectral, and elegant. He has devoted most of his life to the pursuit and expression of fantastic literature, in prose and verse. In Savage Menace he hits the spot most powerfully.” Charles Lovecraft


Phoenix and the Darkness of Wolves

by Shane Jiraiya Cummings

Damnation Books

ISBN: 9781615720552 (e-Book)
ISBN: 9781615720545 (Softcover)

RRP: $ 4.50 US

Release date: December 2009

Available from: Damnation Books

Australia has been devastated by a supernatural inferno. Damon believes he is the last ash-covered survivor, a man’s whose past—and future—is inextricably tied to the magick that caused the conflagration. He tracks a phoenix through this apocalyptic wasteland in the hopes of using its magick to restore his lost family to humanity. His family, in turn, have been condemned to limbo as shadow wolves, emerging for a few fleeting moments every sunset to hunt Damon in the hope his death will free them from their torment. The hunt is on!


A richly Australian piece which will strike a chord with any connoisseur of dark tales.”  HorrorScope.

ISBN: 9781615720552 (e-Book)

Sinister Reads ~ It’s a Stoker kind of thing

Posted in Awards Announcements on December 8, 2009 by ahwasinisterreads


The following was written to the tune of Waltzing Matilda. To the rhyming universe and to all things poetic it is a travesty and should be put down – but where’s the fun in that? So, without further ado we present the final Stoker Awards Recommendation post with a side of sadistic Christmas cheer to tickle the poetic critic and the funny bone.

Once the Jolly Fat Man sat by my Christmas tree,
Feeding on my kid’s dreams while they’re asleep.
I loaded up the shotgun as quiet as could be.
This is gonna be Santa’s last B & E.

Let’s kill Santa, let’s all kill Santa,
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?
He’s a tool of the government to fix the GFC.
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?

I crept down the stairs to take on the Fat Guy,
Keeping to the shadows where he can’t see.
If I had it my way the bastard would fry;
He’s a one man nightmare factory.

Let’s kill Santa, let’s all kill Santa,
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?
The fat fucker’s sitting there watching my TV!
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?

I took aim at Santa while he sat there feeding,
I pulled back the trigger one! two! three!
He smiled and winked and waved as he sat there bleeding.
Who gave the bastard immortality?

Let’s kill Santa, let’s all kill Santa,
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?
He’s the one to blame for your financial misery.
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?

Santa smiled and said “Catch me if you can.”
Then he disappeared in search of fresh cuisine.
Your house could be next for a visit from the Fat Man.
I recommend you try torch his ass with gasoline.

Let’s kill Santa, let’s all kill Santa,
Who’ll come a-slaying Santa with me?
If he’s dead he can’t get off on a technicality.
Save the kids and restore all of our sanity.

Cue the Stoker update!


Recommended for Anthology

What could be better that a ripper of a short story? A bunch of them bound together for your reading pleasure. A good anthology is all about balance and variety, on top of the usual expectations each story must carry to leave a reader satisfied. Finding such balance is no easy task, making a recommendation in this category an achievement in itself.

Amanda Pillar & Jennifer Brozek ~ Grants Pass


When the evil twins Amanda and Jennifer teamed up to pull together some quality horror, there was no question as to the outcome, and no we’re not talking about selling their soul or demonic sacrifices. (And trust us when we say we checked. Enjoy the new flooring ladies.) We’re talking about some fantastic post-apocalyptic stories to leave you restless, disturbed and wondering who you’ll run in to at Grants Pass. For your pleasure, we tricked the terrible twosome into answering the age old question ‘What is the best wine to have with caviar?’ Then we remembered that now wasn’t the time to organise the Christmas party and we got down to business.

Once we stopped thinking about food, we discovered that Amanda is a speculative fiction author and editor who lives in Victoria, Australia, with her partner and two children, Saxon and Lilith, Burmese cats. She has had numerous short stories published and is the in-house editor for Morrigan Books. She has co-edited the fiction anthologies, Voices (2008) and Grants Pass (2009). It took bribing Amanda with a cut of the caviar to convince her to tell us about what she’s working on at the moment. (Do you see the sacrifices we make for you people!) She’s currently working on the anthologies The Phantom Queen Awakes, due out in December 2009, and Scenes from the Second Storey, set for publication at WorldCon 2010.


Jennifer, the sightly more sinister twin (If you want to believe Amanda) is the co-editor of the Grants Pass anthology, and is a freelance author for many RPG companies including Margaret Weis Productions, Rogue Games and Catalyst Game Labs. Her contributions to RPG sourcebooks include Dragonlance, Colonial Gothic, Shadowrun, Serenity and White Wolf SAS. She has also co-authored three books including Dragonvarld Adventures with Margaret Weis. To add to our theory that Jennifer has perfected the recipe for pure inspiration and is holding out on us, she is the author of the upcoming In a Gilded Light (Spring 2010, Dark Quest Books), she is published in several anthologies, is the creator and editor of the semiprozine, The Edge of Propinquity, and is a submissions editor for the Apex Book Company. When she is not writing her heart out, she is gallivanting around the Pacific Northwest in its wonderfully mercurial weather.

We’ll start the bidding for pocket clones of these two next week. No phone bids – that’s just cheating.


Recommended for Collection

We have just received an updated list of Recommendations for the Stoker Awards, and it’s no surprise to find the next writer on that list.

Paul Haines ~ Slice of Life

How do you torture a man for information when he’s trying to kick cancer in the ass, and has a team of doctors poking and prodding him with who knows what?

You don’t.

You just say please.

It turns out that sometimes that shit works. So I guess we should apologise to all of the other writers for being less than gentle in our approach. We promise next year we won’t knock with cricket bats.

Paul was raised in the ‘70s, in the wrong part of Auckland, New Zealand and now lives in Melbourne with his wife and daughter. He has won the Aurealis Award, the Sir Julius Vogel and several Ditmars for his writing and is the author of the following collections Slice of Life (The Mayne Press, 2009), Doorways For The Dispossessed (Prime Books, 2006) and the forthcoming The Last Days Of Kali Yuga (Brimstone Press, 2010). His blistering horrific vision of a future Australia, Wives, is garnering praise in the X6 novellanthology from Coeur De Lion. He’s also been accused of being a nice guy, but we’re waiting on the Third Umpire’s ruling.

The Mayne Press are donating all profits from Slice Of Life sales towards Paul’s ongoing battle. More info at and


We wish all of our writers the very best of luck in getting through to the long ballot. You’ve already made Aussie horror proud just by being recommended – so get back to that notebook, PC, Mac, typewriter, stone tablet, whatever type of word processor you favour, and get writing.

P.S. Final count: Smurfs 75 – SR team 87 (We bought the set of golf clubs Elin Woods listed on ebay. She was right – they do do some serious damage.)