I had a request from a colleague for a list of the better horror authors and books from last fall up to this fall. She was looking for information about some of the lesser known authors. So, I figured, I should share the list with everyone.
First though, I thought I would mention Monster Librarian. This is a wonderful resources for horror readers and the librarians who help them. I especially enjoy the up coming horror fiction releases list, the horror fiction news blog, and Book Ends, a section with special lists and essays. For full disclosure, my book is listed on this site.
Anyway, on to the list of the lesser known (aka not Joe Hill, Stephen King etc..) good horror reads from Fall 2007-2008 [IMO]:
Sarah Langan is the best female horror novelist right now. The Missing is her latest and it won this year's Bram Stoker for best novel.
Jonathan Maberry has just completed his trilogy (which began with Ghost Road Blues) with the May publication of Bad Moon Rising. All three take place at the Pine Deep, PA Halloween festival. I started a few patrons on the trilogy and they were counting down until the publication of the last book. All are only out in paperback.
If you are looking for something meatier, more philosophical, but very, very evil at the same time, Gary Braunbeck is for you. His latest is Coffin County (5/08) and it is scary and violent with an evil, twist ending.
I also really like Tom Piccirilli quite a bit. His most recent publication is The Cold Spot (4/08). You can tell, Piccirilli is well respected because many reviews have begun calling his books thrillers instead of horror, but don't be deceived by the marketing, this is visceral storytelling. It should also be noted that Piccirilli has also provided a story to the Hellboy franchise of graphic novels.
Michael Laimo is a great choice for those like religious horror. His latest is Fires Rising(2/08). And fans of Laimo always point out the gore, violence and action in his novels. Laimo never runs our of adjectives.
Brian Keene broke onto the scene in 2003 with The Rising. This zombie tale was a huge hit with horror fans (who are by the way, extremely discriminating and tough on writers). A sequel, City of the Dead, soon followed, and now Keene has given fans more with The Rising: Selected Scenes from the End of the World (6/08). Here, in 32 short stories, Keene revisits the world he created, gives fans more back story, brings back old characters and introduces new ones. Keene also has a new full length novel coming out on July 29th called Ghost Walk.
If you like your horror with an current events twist, you could try the slightly campy Daemon (4/08) by Harry Shannon. I do want to stress here that "campy" does not mean bad to horror readers. This is a good novel with a knowing nod to the great B-movies of the past.
And for the future:
Bentley Little is one of my favorites. He has a new book due this August called The Academy. While at the end of September, Joe Hill is also back with an illustrated novel called Locke & Key.
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