Get $10 off book purchases over $25 this weekend at Amazon

Posted in News on November 26, 2016 by Christian

amazon-faviconSales, sales everywhere, and all the budgets shrank. If you’re like me this time of year, all these Black Friday sales mean you’re spending way more money than you’re used to, so you don’t have any money to spend on yourself. If you’re a reader (and why would you be here if you weren’t), Amazon’s got a book sale going on that could help you with your holiday shopping list, or maybe just help you with your reading list.

Now through November 28, 2016 at 12:59am CST, Amazon is offering $10 off print book purchases of $25 or more when you enter “HOLIDAYBOOK” in the “Gift cards & promotional codes” field at checkout. I’m going to quickly plug my novels, because THE BLACKENING OF FLESH and LOSING TOUCH together, at regular price, would cost you $32 at Amazon.com. But now you can get both for $22. There. That didn’t feel dirty at all.

Now stop reading this and get back to shopping.

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

Another five flicks for some Thanksgiving horror…

Posted in Observations & Musings on November 24, 2016 by Christian

I’ve done this here and here, and I bet you thought I ran out of movies after the last one. Welp, no, actually. There are a lot of Thanksgiving-appropriate horror movies out there, and I’m not even going for the easy layups like THANKSKILLING and THANKSKILLING 3. (There was no THANKSKILLING 2—not yet, anyway.)

THE VVITCH (2016)

“Evil Takes Many Forms.”

There was a lot of buzz about this piece of quiet horror, and it left movie-goers divided. But I can tell you this: if your daughter says your goat is talking, you’d better run. Also, don’t name your goat Black Peter. You’re just asking for trouble. Might be a bit of a thematic reach, but hey, that’s what this list is all about.

MATANGO: ATTACK OF THE MUSHROOM PEOPLE (1963)

If you like mushrooms on your pizza, you’d have been the monster in this movie. The survivors of a shipwreck wash up on an island where eating ‘shrooms is more dangerous than those after school specials warned you about. (Shameless plug: I wrote “It Has Teeth” for THE BEST OF THE HORROR SOCIETY 2013 which also features a killer fungus.)

EAT (2014)

“The story of a girl who finds herself—and then eats herself.”

Definitely not for the squeamish—if you count yourself in that group, don’t even click on the trailer. A struggling actress is having a hard time landing a role, but that’s not the worst of her problems: she’s also self-cannibalizing. Don’t ruin your appetite. Watch this one after Thanksgiving dinner.

CROWHAVEN FARM (1970)

“A chilling tale of vengeance from beyond the grave.”

A couple inherits a New England farm and moves there to try and save their marriage. The ghosts of the witches who lived there suggest the Salem Witch Trials didn’t go far enough. It’s not a bad little made-for-TV pilgrim-themed horror flick from the Nixon era. Definitely not a turkey. And speaking of bird-themed horror…

BIRDEMIC (2010)

“Who will survive?”

Sure, I could have put THE BIRDS on this list, but then how could I have nominated BIRDEMIC, with its tenuous connection to this most avian of holidays? Setting aside the writing, acting, and cinematography, Yeung Chan’s CGI effects ain’t got nothin’ on Ub Iwerks’s rotoscoping, but then, you get what you pay for.

Holiday horror movies are all the rage—if you’re talking about Christmas or Halloween. Heck, THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS is about both, skipping over Thanksgiving entirely. But they’re out there and there if you know where to look…

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

THE BLACKENING OF FLESH comes to the SE WI Festival of Books

Posted in News on November 2, 2016 by Christian

More than 60 writers are coming to this year’s Southeast Wisconsin Festival of Books, and I’ll be there, too, with copies of THE BLACKENING OF FLESH in tow. This Saturday, come to UW-Waukesha from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for a whole day chock-full of art, expression,  and letters as the university celebrates it’s 50th anniversary with current and retired faculty and alumni gathered for this special event. In other words: if you’re a fan of books and storytelling, you should definitely be there.

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The day starts at 9:00 a.m. with a breakfast session with bestselling novelist Jane Hamilton and hosted by former festival keynote speaker Kathie Giorgio. Then, enjoy the rest of the day by taking in panel discussions, enjoying an original cabaret inspired by TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, or appreciating the works of Shorewood High School’s AP art students. And don’t forget the Writer’s Marketplace. That’s where I’ll be hunkered down for most of the day, signing copies of THE BLACKENING OF FLESH.

In THE BLACKENING OF FLESH, Jared Dix, a freshly-minted high school graduate who’s happy just to be free of the social anxiety high school brought, finds out that his house has a dark past. Half a century earlier, it was used as a rum-running station for a Capone rival. Blood was shed, and bodies were buried. But now, in the summer of 1984, the skeletons are  coming out of the closet, and when Jared learns the truth about what’s happening to his family, he knows he’s the only one who can stop it.

Horror enthusiast Justin Hamelin will be signing copies of his short story collection, THE DARKEST CORNER, in the Writer’s Marketplace, too. Hamelin is also a notable non-fiction writer, having won a 2016 Rondo Hatton Award for his essay, “Remembering Christopher Lee” published in RAVENOUS MONSTER MAGAZINE. The Rondos honor the legacy of Rondo Hatton, who parlayed his unique facial structure into starring roles in THE PEARL OF DEATH (1944), HOUSE OF HORRORS (1946), and THE BRUTE MAN (1946).

Brought to you, in part, by All Writers Workplace, Books & Company-Oconomowoc, BMO Harris Bank, Century Fence Company, Country Springs Hotel, Greater Waukesha Literacy, Holiday Inn-Pewaukee, Literacy for All, Meli Bar & Restaurant, Waukesha Reads! and Waukesha State Bank, the Southeast Wisconsin Festival of Books happens Saturday at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha at 1500 N. University Drive. Admission and parking are free, but bring a few bucks for books. You’ll be glad you did.

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

THE BLACKENING OF FLESH “works at a high level”

Posted in Book Reviews on November 1, 2016 by Christian

Author Scott Dyson (THE INN, THE CAVE) has reviewed THE BLACKENING OF FLESH, calling it a “great horror story, very tense and original.” Dyson picked the book up at Printer’s Row Lit Festival over the summer, but you don’t have to wait for June because it’s available now in paperback and Kindle. Anyway, here’s what he had to say:

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The past won’t stay buried.

Once in a while I read something really interesting and unexpected.  I’ve been getting a bit of reading done recently, having plowed through Stephen King’s END OF WATCH (thumbs up), Harlan Coben’s HOME (also thumbs up), Jim Butcher’s SIDE JOBS (very good), Steve Richer’s THE PRESIDENT KILLED HIS WIFE (good), V.J. Chambers’ THE GIRL ON THE STAIRS (title copying of all of those “Girl on the…” books aside, a really great psychological thriller), and MP McDonald’s MARCH INTO HELL (good and interesting!). Then I read THE BLACKENING OF FLESH by Christian A. Larsen…

Sure, with a cliffhanger like that could head in any direction, but went on to say some very nice things. You can read the rest of the review here. And if you’ve already read THE BLACKENING OF FLESH, I’d love to read your review, too!

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

Halloween hits Harp & Fiddle … a night early

Posted in News on October 31, 2016 by Christian

Happy Halloween, everybody! Too bad it falls on a Monday, but I know I had fun this past weekend. I joined authors John Everson and Cynthia Pelayo for “Halloween Eve” at The Harp and Fiddle in Park Ridge, where we each read from our spookiest works. Afterward, there was the Cubs game (#aroldischapmanforpresident). But, on with the reading…

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The crowd looks on as Cynthia Pelayo reads from THE MISSING.

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John Everson reading “The Pumpkin Man”.

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Reading from THE BLACKENING OF FLESH.

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Cynthia Pelayo, John Everson, and me at The Harp and Fiddle in Park Ridge

I hope you had as great a time as I did. (The Cubs win certainly helped.) Whether you were able to make it out last night or not, I hope you have a horrific terrific Halloween!

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

It’s Halloween weekend, baseball fans! What are your plans for Sunday?

Posted in News on October 28, 2016 by Christian

Bram Stoker Award®-winning editor Michael Bailey (LIBRARY OF THE DEAD) is now compiling a list of the finest speculative, dark, and imaginative novels of 2016 … and my sophomore effort, THE BLACKENING OF FLESH, has made the cut along with some of the genre’s heaviest hitters:

And while it’s technically not a novel, Bailey also said John Boden’s JEDI SUMMER WITH THE MAGNETIC KID was “a novella every X-generation should read, or Y-gen/Millennial if you want to better understand us.”

If you don’t have a copy of THE BLACKENING OF FLESH yet, I’ll be signing copies on Sunday from 5:00 to 7:00 PM at The Harp & Fiddle in Park Ridge for their “Halloween Eve” reading event with Cynthia Pelayo (THE MISSING) and John Everson (PUMPKIN MAN).

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Everson, Pelayo, and I will each be reading short selections from our novels while you eat, drink, and mentally prepare yourself for Game 5 of the World Series, which–wouldn’t you know it–you can watch right there at The Harp & Fiddle on Sunday night.

First pitch is 7:08 PM, so you can load up on bangers and mash and scary stories from Chicago horror authors before you settle in for the baseball game. Here’s your invitation, and you can scout their menu by clicking here.

With Wrigleyville bars charging as much as $1250 to eat and drink with your fellow fans, The Harp & Fiddle is a no-cover bargain with a unique Sunday night pre-game you’ll never forget!

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.

Cubs in Fall Classic; where will you watch (a potential) Game 5?

Posted in News on October 23, 2016 by Christian

Unless the Cubs (or Indians) sweep, game five of the World Series will be played at Wrigley Field on Sunday, October 30th … the night before Halloween. First pitch is set for 7:08 PM with a probable pitching matchup of Cubs ace Jon Lester versus the Tribe’s Corey Kluber… and it could be an elimination game. As a Cubs fan, how do you spend the last couple of hours leading up to that matchup?

By listening to horror stories at The Harp & Fiddle in Park Ridge, natch. You’re invited to Halloween Eve at The Harp & Fiddle from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM, featuring stories from Bram Stoker Award®-winner John Everson, International Latino Book Award-winner Cynthia Pelayo … and I’ll be reading from my ghosts and gangsters novel, THE BLACKENING OF FLESH, just minutes before Lester (probably) takes the bump.

When the read wraps up, settle in and watch some history-in-the-making at The Harp & Fiddle (if the first four games are split in any way). With two dozen beers on tap and brand-new TVs and surround sound, you can share the evening with your fellow fans. And let’s be honest: being a Cubs fan is a social thing—a thing lifted between friends from one generation to the next since Ulysses S. Grant was in the White House.

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The first team photo. Jimmy Wood (sixth from left) later stabbed a zit on his leg with a pocket knife and had to have it amputated. The leg. Not the zit.

So call your buddies. Gather up the family. It’s the World Series and anything can happen, but if there’s a Game 5, watch it at The Harp & Fiddle in Park Ridge. Even if there’s a sweep, though, here’s a surefire bet: there will still be scary good times on Halloween Eve with John Everson, Cynthia Pelayo, and THE BLACKENING OF FLESH. I’ll see you there, starting at 5:00 PM. No tickets necessary, but bring money for food and drinks … and maybe a couple of books!

Christian A. Larsen is the author of the novels LOSING TOUCH and THE BLACKENING OF FLESHnow available from Post Mortem Press.