4 Stars for the Speculative fiction short story LEVIATHAN by SAUL TANPEPPER. 




Length: 31 PAGES


Type of Book: EBOOK

Received From: THE AUTHOR

Release Date: FEBRUARY 11, 2017

Rating: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟


Earth is dying.

On a barren, windless shore of a dead sea, two people, a father and his child, eke out a meager existence. They eat what little they can find. They are tormented by memories and tales of what the world once was.

Then, on a day no different than the thousands of others they have lived, the child hears the ghostly call of a sea creature presumed extinct for decades. Was it real? Or was it the last gasp of planet nearing death?

Leviathan is a short, dark, and haunting post-apocalyptic story (6500 words) written in stream-of-consciousness. Fans of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, which inspired this story, will recognize similarities.

Appropriate for readers of all ages. 



As the world nears its end, a father and his child are tormented by the ghostly call of a sea creature presumed extinct for decades.

Is it the last gasp of a dying planet? Or a reason to hope?

This is an thought-provoking and extremely interesting story. It may have been short, but it packed a punch. It is worth reading.

I rate LEVIATHAN as 4 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟


Saul Tanpepper is the speculative fiction pen name for Ken J. Howe, a retired PhD molecular biologist and biotech entrepreneur who writes full time in multiple genres. The pen name honors the memory of his high school buddy, who passed away at age 27. “Salt and Pepper” was a favorite epithet, given the author’s premature graying.

After a childhood in a small town in Upstate New York, he entered the U.S. Army and was trained as a combat medic. He did a tour in West Germany before the wall came down, working as both a medic in an armored infantry unit in Mannheim and a hospital attendant in Frankfurt. After returning Stateside, he did a tour as a trauma specialist in the emergency room at Walter Army Medical Center in Washington, DC, and at Lawrence General Hospital in Massachusetts.

He attended university in Santa Barbara, CA, majoring in biology and creative studies while working as a medical assistant. He studied molecular biology and genetics as a graduate student, then completed his post-doctoral fellowship at Berkeley.
Prior to entering the work force, he and his wife spent six months traveling through the Middle East and Africa, logging over 50,000 miles in a refurbished garbage truck.

He spent 10 years in biotech, working his way from bench scientist to Director of R&D and site manager of a major pharma company. He then formed his own company, Collabria BioSciences, and was VP of R&D of another startup.

He retired from the business in 2011 to write and publish full time. Under his real name, he writes literary young adult, middle grade, and children’s picture books. As Saul Tanpepper, he writes and publishes speculative fiction (scifi, horror, fantasy).

​He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, children, and many pets and farm animals.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:









BY EMAIL: Send email to: 



TWO MOONS by Speculative Fiction author PK Tyler is a wonderful introduction to a world peopled by two vastly different races. Interesting and Unique. 

Title: MOON DUST  


Author: P.K. TYLER


Length: 59 PAGES


Release Date: MARCH 23, 2015

ISBN: 9781507807972

Rating: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟

Sometimes it works out for the better when you first discover a new book series that already has a couple books available to read right away. It cuts down on all the angst of waiting for the next book. Such is the case with a series that I only discovered yesterday. The series I am talking about is the TWO MOONS OF SERA Series. To add to the excitement of discovering an talented author that I had not known about, if you visit her website and sign up for her newsletter, she will send a free copy of the prequel to the series: TWO MOONS OF SERA. 

MOON DUST introduces readers to an entirely new world which is populated by two vastly different races.

The main character of this story is Nilafay. She is a Sualwet. The Sulawets live beneath the ocean, most of them residing in the Domed City. They have completely hairless bodies and webbed toes (both of which ensure that they are excellent and elegant swimmers.) They have a regulated society that is despotic and there are very clear class divisions.

The other race that inhabits this amazing world are the Erdlanders. This race is the one that seems to most closely resemble humans. They live on the land and have hair on their heads and most of the men have beards. Because the story mostly focuses on Nilafay, we do not learn as muçh about the Erdlanders as we do about the Sualwet.

As seems to happen when two very different races do not attempt to understand each other, they go to war. In fact, the war has been going on for a long time.

On the morning of her much anticipated wedding, Nilafay makes a decision that will not only change her life, but also the lives of both species. Little does she know that her impulsive decision will have consequences far beyond what she could ever have imagined.

I was fascinated by the world that P.K. Tyler has created. She has done a great job of world building and in generating interest in the MOON OF SERA series. I plan to read more and I cannot imagine that anyone reading it would not want to read on and find out what happens next.

This  novella is well written with vivid characters and a well thought out plot. I rate it as 4 out of 5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟

Thank you to the author for providing me with a free copy of this book through her newsletter. I am now officially a fan.


P.K. TYLER is the bestselling author of speculative fiction and other genre-bending novels. She is an artist, a wife, a mother and a number cruncher.

She graduated Smith College in 1999 with a degree in Theatre.

After graduation, she moved to New York, where she worked as a Dramaturge, Assistant Director and Production Manager on productions both on and off Broadway.

When not writing Speculative Fiction she twists her mind by writing horror and literary fiction.

To sign up for her newsletter and to receive a free ebook, visit her online at the following links:








4 Stars for WORSE THAN DEATH by Mark Allen – Novella Review



Subtitle: Day One of the Zombie Apocalypse

Author: Mark Allen

Type of Book: eBook – Novella

Length: 27 pages

Genre: Horror

Release Date: April 2014

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

*** HOLY CRAP***

That was my response to reading the very first sentence in this story. I won’t quote it here (as much as I would love to) because I don’t want to ruin the beginning for potential readers.

** I feel that I need to add a warning to this review that WORSE THAN DEATH is not suitable for all readers. This book contains scenes of graphic violence that will be disturbing to some readers. I suggest that this book is only appropriate for adult readers ages 18 and older.**

Russell Stavin experiences a recurring and absolutely horrific nightmare every night. “Except it wasn’t a dream. It was a memory.”

Russell had been a Marine Scout Sniper who spent two years in Afghanistan. He now lives on a thirty acre property located in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York with his wife and young daughter.

When zombies start to rise Russell Stavin is shocked and appalled, but he quickly learns that sometimes the walking dead can be the least of your worries.

His wife and daughter are trapped by an evil man and Russell is determined to save them despite the fact that he must somehow make his way through a horde of zombies to do it.

This book also contains a bonus short story entitled “All The Way”.

I enjoyed WORSE THAN DEATH. It is a fast-paced, gore-filled tale of the first day of the zombie apocalypse.

The author has the gift of hard-hitting writing that grabs your attention and holds it right until the very end.

I have read A LOT of zombie fiction, so it takes quite a bit to impress me. This story did that.

Also, since it is only 27 pages long it is a quick read. You can even read it on your lunch hour.

I love the cover of this novella. I don’t know if it was done on purpose, but the cover brings to my mind posters of B Horror Movies from the 1970s. It has a distinctive classic horror flair that attracted me to it.

The quote I liked the best in this book is: “The zombie went down as if bitch-slapped by the hand of God.”

I rate this novella as 4 out of 5 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️


Author Mark Allen

Mark Allen lives in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York. He writes horror and action fiction.

For more information visit his blog at www.gunsgutsgod.blogspot.com









Type of Book: eBook

Length: 20 pages

Genre: Children’s Fiction, Fairy Tales

Target Readership: Ages 7-12, Grades 2-7

Release Date: March 11, 2014

Publisher: Meadowbrook Press – A Division of Simon and Schuster
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

~ I received a free copy of this book from www.SimonandSchuster.com It is also free on Amazon and in iBooks. ~

This book is from the “Newfangled Fairy Tales” series which is edited by Bruce Lansky. This series is a collection of revised fairy tales with new twists on older themes and even some modern characters. It includes the story of “…a beautiful princess who is put to sleep for 100 years because she is so cranky… and Hansel, who is so obsessed with candy that he steals Gretel’s piggy bank and runs off to the Old Witch’s Candy Factory.”

This series is suitable for both male and female children from the ages of 7 to 13. 


At only 20 pages it is a quick read and despite the fact that the target readership is children, this is also a great short tale for adults to enjoy as well. 

The main character is a ‘tweenage’ girl named Michelle Koszlowski. This girl is like many other girls her age and she is 100% believable. She lives “…with her parents and her bratty little brother, Donald, in a gray house with white shutters. The Koszlowski house looked just like all the other gray houses with white shutters on Maple Street in Sheboygan, Michigan.” Anyone who has ever visited (or lived in) modern day suburbia will recognize what Michelle’s house looks like. 

Michelle is very similar to some modern day tween girls I know. She doesn’t like her house; she thinks it’s too “ordinary”. She’s lazy, spoiled and feels like it is her right to have everything she wants given to her immediately. In short, she’s an annoying, spoiled brat.

Michelle wants to live the life of a Princess.

But, when her dream comes true, will Michelle be happy? You’ll have to read the story to find out.

Since this fairy tale is available free of charge courtesy of Simon and Schuster Publishing you have nothing to lose by giving this book a chance. If you have children that are between the ages of 7 and 13, you really should have them read this book. Or, better yet, sit and read it together. You will enjoy the story and its moral shines through and could open up a new topic to talk with your child about.

I rate this “Newfangled Fairy Tale” as 5 out of 5 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

Bruce Lansky has edited a number of poetry anthologies (including Rolling in the Aisles, Kids Pick the Funniest Poems, If Kids Ruled the School, A Bad Case of the Giggles, Miles of Smiles, and No More Homework! No More Tests!), and 3 silly songbook anthologies. Lansky created the popular GigglePoetry.com website for children and the PoetryTeachers.com website for teachers. He also created the Girls to the Rescue series, the New Fangled Fairy Tales series, and the Can You Solve the Mysteries series. 

Read Bruce’s biography here: 


Visit his Facebook page at https://m.facebook.com/bruce.lansky.3/ 






Author: Edgar Allan Poe

Type of Book: Audiobook – Unabridged

Narrator: Walter Zimmerman

Length: 25 minutes

Genre: Horror, Short Story

Release Date: November 20, 2008

Publisher: Jimcin Recordings 

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 
~ I received a free copy of this audiobook through AudioBookBlast dot com in exchange for an honest review. 

This audiobook is only 25 minutes long which makes it a great lunchtime listen. 

It a classic horror short story written by Edgar Allan Poe. 

The main characters in this story are Mr. Valdemar and a Mesmerist. Valdemar is on his death bed and the Mesmerist wants to place him in a hypnotic state at the exact moment of his death. The reason for attempting such a strange experiment is to determine whether or not it would be possible to communicate after physical death. 

When it was first published there was much controversy surrounding the tale. Why? Well, Mr. Poe did not tell people that it was a work of fiction. Many believed that it was a true account. Eventually Poe had to put an end to the gossip and announced that it was indeed a work of pure fiction. 

I enjoyed listening to this audiobook but it has been a long time since I have read any of Poe’s work and I had forgotten how archaic the language of the time seems.

I rate this audiobook as 4 out of 5 stars.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 



Photograph obtained from http://www.biography.com

Edgar Allan Poe was born in 1809 and died forty years later in 1849. 

Poe became a literary sensation in 1845 when he published his poem “The Raven”. 

Poe is famous for his horror tales. Two themes that seem to appear in his writing are: Death and Loss. 

To read a full biography of Edgar Allan Poe visit: http://www.biography.com/people/edgar-allan-poe-9443160#major-works 



 Walter Zimmerman is both a published author and an audiobook narrator. 

5 Stars for THE BEAST WITHIN by D.F. Holland – BOOK REVIEW


Author: D.F. Holland 

Type of Book: eBook

Length: 27 pages 

Genre: Short Story, Horror 

Release Date: September 24, 2015 

Publisher: Kindle Edition 

Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

~ I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. 

I love the subject matter that D.F. Holland chose to write about for this short story. I may be alone in this, but I have often thought about the gargoyles that are perched on many older buildings in many cities across North America. I often think about them when walking on the street below. Firstly, imagine the amount of history they have witnessed. If only they were equipped with video cameras that perpetually recorded – imagine what we could see and learn. Of course, the gargoyles were carved long before video cameras were a reality, but still I think it would be cool. I’ve often worried that one day these gargoyles may loosen from their perches and fall on unsuspecting pedestrians below.

D.F. Holland has taken her musings a step further in her short story THE BEAST WITHIN. 

“The gargoyles were so high above the sidewalk that most people were unaware of them. Only an occasional helicopter pilot could see the enormity and magnificence of the gargoyles”

Heather lives on the top floor of one of these gargoyle decorated buildings, but despite living so close to it, she has never seen the gargoyles. 

Heather had recently gone through a breakup but she was finally over the grieving process and decided to get out of the apartment. 

Lucky for her, she picked the perfect day to go out and she ends up meeting an amazing guy. In fact, she thinks that he just might be the one.

The first part of this story draws the reader in and the romance takes centre stage. Readers will find themselves smiling as they read about the new couple. 

But, just as you get comfortable with the story, it takes a sinister and decidedly scary turn. I LOVED IT!

D.F. Holland has done an amazing job of drawing in her readers and in capturing and keeping their attention. I enjoyed the twists in the story and am amazed at how much detail she was able to include in only 27 pages. 

I rate THE BEAST WITHIN as 5 out of 5 Stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 



D.F. Holland is a longtime admirer of the Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, the works of Ira Levin and other works of fantasy, sci-fi and horror.

TALES FROM THE BEAUMONT HOUSE is Holland’s first novel. Holland was born and resides in New York and is currently working on a new project. 

Works by D.F. Holland:




Visit her on facebook:


5 Star Book Review of THE PROMISE OF A NEW TOMORROW by D.F. Holland 



Author: D.F. Holland

Type of Book: eBook

Length: 12 pages 

Genre: Short Story, Paranormal

Release Date: September 28, 2015

Publisher: Kindle Edition 

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

~ I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. 

Bill Weston has money; and lots of it. But, even money can’t buy everything. 

When he finds himself facing a lengthy prison sentence for money laundering, mail fraud, bank fraud as well as a multitude of other charged, he dreams of escaping and somehow avoiding jail.

This short story was written by D.F. Holland. My first experience with her writing was reading her book of related short stories called “Tales From Beaumont House.” That book is excellent and the stories were both scary and complex. This story fits in with her writing style perfectly. 

D.F. Holland has achieved with very few pages what many authors are unable to achieve with a full length novel. She has created a scenario that most people can relate to. Both her character building and her world building are excellent and the twist at the end will surprise you. 

I enjoyed this story very much and due to it’s length, it would make a terrific lunchtime read. 

I rate this story as 5 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

I highly recommend adding this story to your personal library. 

This story is currently available for free at:

Amazon – FREE


Google Play – FREE


Smashwords – FREE


Nook – FREE



D.F. Holland is a longtime admirer of the Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, the works of Ira Levin and other works of fantasy, sci-fi and horror.

TALES FROM THE BEAUMONT HOUSE is Holland’s first novel. Holland was born and resides in New York and is currently working on a new project. 

Works by D.F. Holland:




Visit her on facebook:


4 Stars for INO’S LOVE by Marianne Sciucco – AUDIOBOOK REVIEW


Author: Marianne Sciucco 

Type of Book: Audiobook- Unabridged 

Narrator: Terry Murphy

Length: 28 minutes

Genre: Fiction, Short Stories 

Release Date: September 21, 2015

Publisher: Bunky Press

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 


“Into prepares a Christmas feast for her successful CEO son, but when he’s too busy to spend the holiday with his mother, she shares her dinner and gifts with her home health aide. Sometimes, the people who love us best are not family.”


This audiobook was a very quick listen. The entire story only lasted 28 minutes, but within those twenty-eight minutes quite a lot took place. 

Ino is an elderly widow living in an apartment in New York’s Little Italy. She has lived there for most of her life and she has no intention of ever moving, despite the fact that she now has difficulty handling the stairs. As far as Ino is concerned, there is nothing or no one that could ever convince her move away from the place where she experienced so many happy moments in her life.

Ruby is a paid caregiver who visits Ino several times a week and spends a few hours with her each time. This service is paid for by Ino’s son who is a bigshot corporate executive who makes a ton of money, but lives on the other side of the country. 

When business brings him to New York a few days before Christmas he calls his mother and tells her that he is dropping by to visit her. 

Ino is excited that her son is coming to see her and she cooks his favourite food. However, he calls and says he can’t make it. Ino decides to ask Ruby to stay for dinner instead.

I have to admit that it made me quite angry that her son was so self-absorbed that he didn’t even consider his mother’s feelings when he cancelled. Sadly, this scenario is one that plays out way too often in households across the country. 

There is a whole extra topic of conversation and discussion that arises when Ruby stays for dinner, but I won’t go into detail here because I don’t want to ruin the story for potential audiobook listeners. I will say that if this audiobook does not make you feel, then you are immune to normal human emotions. 

The narrator for this audiobook was outstanding, perfectly capturing the mood and emotions of the characters in this story. 

I rate the audiobook as 4 out of 5 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

* I received a free copy of this audiobook through AudioBookBlast dot com in exchange for an honest review. 


Marianne Sciucco is a writer who happens to be a nurse. A lover of words and books, she studied the craft of writing as an English major at the University of Massachusetts at Boston and briefly worked as a newspaper reporter in New England. 

To avoid poverty, she later became a nurse and wrote about the intricate lives of people struggling with health and family issues. 

A native Bostonian who loves Cape Cod, she lives in upstate New York. When she isn’t writing, she works as a campus nurse at a community college. 

To learn more about her visit http://MarianneSciucco.blogspot.com 


Terry Murphy started her voiceover career in 1980 and she has held multiple News Anchor jobs including positions in Cincinnati, Detroit Michigan, Chicago Illinois and Los Angeles California. 

Her voice was the driving force behind the highly successful syndicated show “Hard Copy” for nine years. Because of this, she was once known as America’s tabloid queen!

More information can be found at  http://www.voicespro.com/us/voice-artist/profile/terry-murphy

Hoarder in the Down Deep by Marilyn Peake – BOOK REVIEW


By: Marilyn Peake

Published 2015
Length: 57 pages
Available for purchase only on Amazon

* I received a free electronic copy of this novella from the author in exchange for an honest review.*

First I feel that I must comment on the absolutely stunning cover of this novella. Kudos go out to Mike Tabor for creating such a gorgeous cover.

This story is set in the world of “Wool” created by author High Howey. This is FAN FICTION.

I have been fascinated by the world of “Wool” ever since reading Hugh Howey’s series. If you have not yet read this series, you must read it as soon as possible. It is a fascinating world rich in detail and depth.

In “Hoarder in the Down Deep” couples are banned from having children unless they are chosen to do so in a lottery based system. This is necessary for population control as they live in a silo that is built deep into the earth. The silo can only sustain a limited number of inhabitants or resources will be depleted and everyone’s lives could be jeopardized.

Evangeline Hubbard, like all other women of child-bearing age in the silo, has had a birth control device implanted to prevent pregnancy as required by law. Evangeline is a farmer in the down deep.

This story is set during the period of time when Sheriff Holston and his wife had won the lottery and were given a year to conceive a child. Six months into their one year of allotted time, his wife Allison has yet to become pregnant.

During this time Evangeline discovers that the implants sometimes fail. This failure causes a chain of events that will impact her life forever.

This story combines all the things fans of “Wool” will want to read with a truly exceptional tale of what emotional trauma can do to a person’s psyche.

It is well written and I read the entire novella in a single sitting.

I rate “Hoarder in the Down Deep” as 5 out of 5 stars. Marilyn Peake has written a tale that Hugh Howey should be proud to have as part of his series. This is Fan Fiction at its finest. I hope the author decides to write more stories based on Hugh Howey’s “WOOL” series. If she does I will be first in line to read them.



Marilyn Peake is the author of both novels and short stories. Her publications have received excellent reviews. Marilyn’s one of the contributing authors in Book: The Sequel, published by The Perseus Books Group, with one of her entries included in serialization at The Daily Beast. In addition, Marilyn has served as Editor of a number of anthologies. Her short stories have been published in seven anthologies and on the literary blog, Glass Cases.

To learn more about the author of HOARDER IN THE DOWN DEEP visit http://www.marilynpeake.com

BEDTIME by Anthony Avina


*I was given a free electronic copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.*

The problem I encounter when reviewing books is that I promise that I will be truthful when reviewing anyone’s work. The question sometimes arises (in my mind): how honest is too honest? I highly respect anyone who has put forth the immense effort it takes to write a book. Any book (good or bad) takes work, and often beginning authors are sensitive about their creations. Understandably so. However, I believe that to give a book a higher rating just to spare an author’s feelings is not only dishonest, but also does a disservice to that author.

‘Bedtime’ by Anthony Avila has the potential to be a terrific novella, however in it’s current incarnation it is a bit of a disaster. What ‘Bedtime’ really needs is an attentive proofreader and a diligent editor. The plot is interesting and the characters aren’t bad, but this novella is so full of grammatical and editorial errors that it is difficult to read. For example: ” and never shied away from eating whatever her hearts content.” The author probably meant to say, “… and never shied away from eating whatever she desired.” Or even ‘… she always ate to her heart’s content.” Of the two options I would have chosen to use: “… and never shied away from eating whatever she desired.” There are so many of these types of errors that I could list over fifty examples. A good editor and/or proof-reader would help the author catch these errors before the novella was released. In fact, thanks to the wonders of electronic books, it is not too late to make the changes necessary and to re-release this book.

On the first few pages the author mentions California four times. This is unnecessary, and I have never heard of “California sun drenched skin.” Is this different from sun drenched skin in Oregon? Or New York? Sun drenched skin is descriptive enough without adding the word ‘California’ in front if it.  Other examples of poor proof reading occur when incorrect words are used, such as “detour her” instead of “deter her” and “infuriation” (which I do not think is an actual word) instead of “frustration.” This happens again when Timothy “balls” his eyes out. It should be ‘bawl’ not ‘ball’.

Timothy and Nancy are a young, married couple with a four year old daughter named Felicity. They live in California and both have successful careers. When their previously calm four year old daughter starts waking up screaming in the middle of the night they are unsure what is happening. When Felicity tells her parents that there is a monster in her closet it causes different reactions for each parent. Timothy is inclined to disbelieve her claims while Nancy gives her the benefit of the doubt. Is there really something lurking in the little girl’s closet? Or are her nightmares just a figment of her imagination? You will need to read ‘Bedtime’ to find out.

The storyline sounds promising and the plot isn’t bad. It’s just too bad that I was unable to really enjoy it due to poor editing. This could have been a 3.5 or even 4 star story, but with all the errors I cannot rate it higher than 2 out of 5 stars.