Mary, The Summoning
By Hillary Monohan
Review by Jarad Johnson
When this book was first recommended to me, I thought it would be a good choice. I’ve been in the mood for a good horror novel lately. It’s about Bloody Mary, the urban legend. It can be difficult to have an original take or plot line with such a familiar trope, because nearly everything has been done; however, this was an engaging read for the most part. In some ways I was not disappointed, and in some ways, I was let down. Overall, it’s a fine read, neither really good nor really bad, though there are parts of that fit into both categories. I found that, at times, the writing made what should have been a fast-paced read drag and slow down. Also, I couldn’t quite hook into the story, didn’t find it scary or remotely chilling, which oddly, I believe was the intention. I found it to be slightly affected, and to be honest it read like a bad horror movie. That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it. There’s some value in a bad horror movies. But it just didn’t live up to my expectations.
Don't forget that Uncle Morty is waiting for your entries in the First Annual Sacred Chickens Writing Contest. There's no entry fee! There are cash prizes! We don't hold the copyrights!
Click on Morty or here to find the contest rules!
The contest ends on August 1, 2018 - so as Morty would say, "The time is drawing nigh."
You might wonder how what Morty has been doing to occupy himself while he waits for your submissions to be judged. He's been traveling, partying, napping, hanging with his friends and just generally rying to keep himself busy to ward off the excitement.
Here are the items that we at Sacred Chickens think you might want to check out this week. Julie recommends a noir book with a punk photographer. Morty wants you to read Zelda Fitzgerald for her stream of consciousness style and vivid images. Finally, Jarad has a book that advocated for the rights of women, because not enough people are. Happy reading!
The Weird Sisters
By Eleanor Brown
Review by Jarad Johnson
On first glance, this book has everything that would draw in a bookworm: a character who only answers questions in Shakespearean prose, constant references to reading and books, and pretty good writing. And while those things did make it enjoyable, ultimately I found the book to be lacking in direction and the overall plot to be somewhat juvenile.
I will be reading at the KGB Bar in Manhattan upstairs in the Red Room on Friday, June 8, from 7-9 PM. If you're around you, come out and see me and all the other writers! It's free and open to the public.
Here are some of the things that we at Sacred Chickens believe you should spend your time reading this weekend.
Julie chose a short story collection that features a small town haunted, both by ghosts and by its racist past. Given the current climate, it tends to feel less like we're haunted by racism and more like it never died in the first place.
Jarad has two things to recommend this week: The first is the book about the Chimpanzees of Gombe, and Dr. Goodall's extraordinary work done there. The second is a Politico article explaining the White House Press Secretary, and how she manages and attempts to put out the ever present fires at the White House
Morty recommends a movie that shines a light on poverty in a county near disneyland, a sad juxtaposition that shows the happiest place on earth with a lot of unseen sadness.
What is Your Uncle Morty celebrating? The fact that people are starting to submit to the first annual Sacred Chickens Writing Contest.
There are no entry fees. Submissions are blind. We don't hold copyrights.
Uncle Morty can't read the submissions until the contest ends, but he's already getting excited. We can't decide whether to take his brandy away or put valium in it.
Here's the scoop!
Heart of the Broken World
by Jeff Weddle
Review by Julie Carpenter
Jeff Weddle writes poetry that captures the terrible dilemma of being human, the paradoxical notion that goodness and beauty may be best appreciated by those who have find themselves on the outside looking in. In all of his poetry, we find decency swallowed by corruption, and then still leaving a shadow of itself, an infection of left over hope.
The title of this chap book is terribly apt for this collection (and most of Weddle’s poetry). . Every poem in the collection is an attempt to shake off the rubbish of decay to find some moment, some nugget of hope or beauty. Weddle acknowledges both the overwhelming bitterness of life and the fact that some elemental good is left after the fires of anger, hopelessness, meanness and strife have consumed innocence.
In almost every poem, the broken and the beautiful are side by side as in this line in the poem “It Will be Later Still” describing an aging man,
“Bald head shining like a beacon to decay”
Decomposition and light meld together. The bitterness of aging is the lens with which one can see the beauty of youth. In poems like “It’s True” the past is a lost country…but not quite lost…because it still exists in the memory. Jeff’s poetry dances on the edge of despair, but never goes over the edge. It is poetry for our times.
Hold Me Closer, Necromancer
By Lish McBride
Review by Jarad Johnson
During the hectic week of final exams, it’s always nice to have a distraction, which is exactly why I picked this book up. It’s an all-engrossing, fast-paced urban fantasy that contains: a zombie panda, witches, werewolves, a dragon-cat, an evil necromancer AND feisty ghosts. This particular ghost also happens to love waffles, but who can blame them? And, while I really enjoyed the book, there is just no way to sum all that up in a succinct sentence. It also may seem like a lot of things going on at once in a rather average-sized book, but somehow it all works, and makes sense within the story.
Click on Morty's picture to find out how you can take his money! Cash prizes! No fees! You keep the all rights after we publish your story.
You know you want to!