Revival

Revival (novel) - Wikipedia

What becomes of our future is unclear, but sometimes those we meet are destined to be connected to us, whether we want them there or not. Jamie Morton was a small boy when he met Reverend Charles Jacobs, a young, idealistic pastor with a beautiful family. And a fascination with electricity. After a ski accident, Jamie’s brother loses his voice; with nowhere else to turn, Jacobs offer’s a cure using electricity. Miraculously the boy is cured. Then comes the day when Jacob’s life crashes and his family gruesomely dies in a car accident, the pastor blasts god and mankind in a dark sermon after, disappearing. Years down the road as fate would have it, Jamie and Jacobs would reunite as Jacobs is a traveling carnie. Jamie, now a heroin addict, is in a bad way until Jacobs offers a electric cure. Charles Jacobs, hero to so many, seemingly able to use the “secret electricity” to cure dozens but when sinister aftereffects start arising, Jamie realizes his old friend is truly mad and maybe up to a glorious undertaking that can be deadly.

Over the past decade, while Stephen King will always be a hero of mine, I can’t say I’ve enjoyed many of his books this past decade. While I liked The Outsider and as much as Under the Dome pissed me off, it still wasn’t a bad book. That being said, Revival is a damn great book. Charlie Jacobs is a really good King villain who’s really sympathetic but throughout the story, slips more and more into madness, making you question how long this dude has really been nuts. I like the theme around a sinister preacher pretty much tampering with a power we barely understand. I like Jamie Morton and how the book follows his life. The ending I thought was pretty surprising and dark, actually one of my favorites to a King story. While I can’t call it horror in the conventional sense, its a damn good story. Also, for those that put off by the word count of some of King’s books, Revival is just about 400 pages so it’s a really quick read. In the end, I really recommend Revival as one of the best King books in a long time and I highly recommend it. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Jaws (novel)

Jaws (novel) - Wikipedia

The original reason not to go in the water, how many few movies have ever become as legendary as Jaws? Well, like Spielberg’s other book based classics Jurassic Park , Schindler’s List, War of the Worlds, and Ready Player One, Jaws came from a novel as well. If you aren’t familiar, Savior covered Jaws (1975) back when, so I’m going to skip the synopsis and stick to the novel’s content.

Well, let’s start by saying Jaws is a story of many things, and the shark just kinda feels there for most of it. The story mostly focuses on the town of Amity’s struggling finances, Sheriff Brody looking into political corruption and his budding marital issues that becomes a whole other tangent as Ellen Brody sleeps with Matt Hooper…oh and did I mention a shark is killing people? Seriously, if you thought there was a serious lack of shark in the movie, well, the book doesn’t give you much more except for some gory aftermath. While their are some good tense moments towards the end, there are a whole mess of times I unintentionally laughed my ass off or asked WTF aloud much like IT (the novel) . For example, the comical over the top reaction to finding the first victim, Ellen and Hooper’s WTF sexual fantasies, and the cartoonish, sleazy mayor gave me a lot of laughs. Like the movie, Quint is awesome but he doesn’t show up until almost 2/3s of the way through the book. I also have to give the book credit on the serious downer ending. As for pacing, the book is a slow draw; on audiobook I feel it’s more effective because I feel like if I was reading it I would’ve lost myself easy. So I honestly have to say the book is meh overall and I think the movie is a much better story and unless you were a super fan of the movie, the book is pretty skippable. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Hannibal (book)

Hannibal (Harris novel) - Wikipedia

Seven years have passed since Clarice Starling brought down Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lector disappeared into the world. Clarice persevered through the ranks of the FBI but one raid gone wrong has plummeted her from grace; over the years Lector has stayed with her, writing her but still unfound. His past victim, the twisted and deformed Mason Verger is out for revenge against Lector at any cost and paths are going to cross, but is the real evil Dr. Lector or his former victim?

Now as I had to say with my reviews of Red Dragon (book) and Silence of the Lambs (book) I’ve never seen the movie but I’ve been told numerous times it wasn’t one of Ridley Scott’s best. I will say the book is a damn good read and a pretty bleak but strangely beautiful end to Clarice Starling’s story. I really liked Lector in this book, who is portrayed as almost an antihero compared to Verger. Verger was my favorite villain of the trilogy; he was pretty much a sick bastard who got worse and came up with a pretty messed up revenge plan. The book is the longest of the three but it flows really well is paced pretty good. I’d say if you really liked the other two books, this is good finale to the story of Hannibal Lector and Clarice Starling. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

IT (the novel)

It (novel) - Wikipedia

Are you ready to float with me on one of those strange kind of reviews where I go off the beaten path a bit? Yep, IT, the King classic about seven childhood friends haunted by a interdimensional spider clown who vow to meet when the creature would inevitably would return in their hometown of Derry, Maine. So between Savior and I we covered It (1990) , It (2017) , and IT Chapter Two (Review) but neither of us covered the book until now. All seriousness, IT is a 1,163 page novel so it takes a bit of time to get through and you shouldn’t read this unless you are really in it for the long haul.

My biggest question going in was which iteration was the closest: the quirky melodrama of the 90’s, the super dark fright fest of 2017, or the WTF extravaganza of Chapter Two? Well, honestly all 3 but mostly the 90’s and Chapter Two are the closest in tone. I imagined Pennywise being way more Tim Curry than Bill Skarsgard; your personal fear of clowns weighs heavy on how much this book will freak you out. There’s a lot of different shapes Pennywise takes in the book than the movies but for the most part, they are B movie monsters ( he basically becomes mini Rhodan at one point as well as a mummy, werewolf, and a fucking dog at one point). Honestly, if I had to sum the book up, it’s a B movie epic combined with a drama.

For positives, the book is well written and you really do care about the characters. The first chunk of this book, about 300 pages, is actually pretty strong and Georgie’s Death is a well done intro. The book is strongest as a coming of age story and when it’s dealing with the trauma the adults must face going forward. As a horror story, this book is pretty damn subjective, even more so than most as I said before. Either you’ll shit your pants from fear or piss your pants laughing.

For the negatives, there’s 3 that royally kill the book. First, as I’m sure you’d surmise by the page count, this book is padded to hell. Easily there’s 300 pages that can be chopped out and not really make any difference.. Secondly, the last act, flipping constantly back and forth is jarring as hell; quite a few times I lost track of what was past and present. The last is the actual finale which just feels both anticlimactic but also insanely over the top at the same time. With this, I’m kinda obligated to mention the infamous Chud ritual towards the end of the kid half; it is pretty WTF, its as bad as you’ve heard, and I feel like King was on some pretty deep drugs during the Chud/ turtle moments- you’ve been warned.

So, I’m going to say IT isn’t a terrible book but holy shit its overrated much like The Shining . I’m disappointed but I can’t say its far from the worst books I’ve read. I can’t recommend reading it unless you are a very dedicated reader, super fan of the movies, or like myself, a writer studying the craft; for most of us, stick to the movies. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Alien: Prototype

Amazon.com: Alien: Prototype: 9781789090918: Waggoner, Tim: Books

After a near death encounter with the infamous Xenomorph species along with Amanda Ripley, Zula Hendricks has taken a security lead gig on Jericho 3, a a developing colony. The aliens haunt her nightmares and have taken a toll on her body but her drive to rid the galaxy of the beasts is still ablaze; at least she’s nowhere near Wey-Yu. But the terror never stops for long, a deranged scientist gets his hands on an egg and the experiment kicks off to study the beast, but something’s different; the host was a longtime medical guinea pig infected with the traces of a highly contagious flesh eating disease. What does this mean for the new born Xenomorph? One of the universe’s deadliest monsters has evolved…

Prototype is a actually a pretty good Alien story, despite the stock movie cover which originally put me off. The plague alien ( they call it a Necromorph in the book but I don’t want to compare Alien to DeadSpace ) is actually pretty badass and a really cool idea. Hendricks is a pretty good protagonist dealing with the pressures of being a leader and dealing with new kind of monster. I like that this story is a damn good case of how much devastation 1 Xenomorph can cause. While it’s connected to Isolation and a follow up comic, the book stands pretty well on it’s own. It’s well paced and it doesn’t take long for things to happen. In the end, Alien: Prototype is a fun Alien standalone that adds something new to the dreaded acid blooded monsters and is worth checking out. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Nos4A2

NOS4A2 - Wikipedia

I really enjoyed Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill, son of horror legend Stephen King, who I’m happy to say has crafted his own identity as a writer. Nos4A2 cemented as a Joe Hill fan.

Vic McQueen was a girl who had a interesting way of finding missing things and escaping her parents toxic, failing marriage. No matter where the lost things lay. A powerful creative, with the help of her favorite bike, she can summon a bridge a bridge called the “Shorter Way” that allows her to travel incredible distances instantly, but at a devastating cost. With the help of Maggie, a fellow creative, she learns a bit about her ability but is warned to fear the Wraith. Not all creatives are good and a black Roles Royce Wraith takes children with the help of the Gasmask Man and whisks them off to Christmasland, where the children will be forever happy without their souls, exchanged for sharp teeth and a devotion to the driver of the car: Charlie Manx, who wants to live forever to bring joy to the children and to end Vic, no matter how long he has to wait to do it. Can Vic save her family from a ageless villain and his ride?

I absolutely love this book. The characters are great and honestly, Charlie Manx maybe my favorite literary villain of all time- he kind of reminded me of Mary Poppins, Mister Rodgers, and Dracula rolled into one. The book, while about 700 pages moves at a constant pace and never drags and never feels like its speeding. Hill writes simply but balances detail and has some really good, freaky imagery. I have to give Hill credit for telling a different kind of vampire story while still having nods to one. My only complaint was the ending felt a little muddled but all things considered, it was a fine ending. In the end, it was a damn good horror I highly recommend. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Green Lantern: Wanted Hal Jordan

Amazon.com: Green Lantern: Wanted - Hal Jordan (9781401215903): Johns,  Geoff, Reis, Ivan: Books

Hal Jordan, air force pilot, hothead, and legendary Green Lantern is many things but a perfect man is not one of them. After being shot down and held captive by terrorists with two of his fellow pilots, unarmed. After getting free, the guilt eats away at him and he quickly gets the chance to face his captors again when his new girlfriend is taken back. The rescue proves successful but not without casualties, seeming at the hands of Lantern himself. Suddenly Jordan is caught in a international mess that pours into the cosmos, the mastermind having connections to not only Jordan’s origin as a Lantern, but the Lantern he is proceeding…

I forgot how much I loved Geoff Johns’ work on Green Lantern. Set before Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War , the story takes a little bit to follow but won’t be long. The artwork is great and Johns’ does great writing Jordan. Amon Sur is a pretty decent villain and I like that he is used to foreshadow events to come and the rise of the Sinestro Corps. Along with the main story, there is a pretty interesting story about the formation of the Star Sapphires that helps bring Blackest Night into play. In the end, it’s a pretty fun book that helped me why I love Green Lantern and is worth checking out. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Coraline

Coraline: Neil Gaiman: Bloomsbury Children's Books

Coraline Jones is a girl who yearns for adventure in a dull, boring world with her neglectful parents. Her family moves into a spooky house surrounded by strange neighbors. One day Coraline discovers their is a whole new world made for her, ruled by her fun, loving Other Mother. There is fun, there is games, but something simply isn’t right with their wide grins and button eyes. The Other Mother offers to keep Coraline, all she has to do is let her sew buttons into her eyes; the Other Mother rapidly shows the horror of the Other World but if Coraline ever wants to save not only herself but her real parents, she’ll have to match wits against the Other Mother unless fall to the same terrible fate as others before her…

So, whether book or film, this ties with Willy Wonka as my favorite kid’s story. Neil Gaiman creates a genuinely intriguing horror story that is pretty damn original and creepy for all ages. The book isn’t long and simple but doesn’t talk down to it’s audience. The movie does an amazing job of translating Gaiman’s world and adding it’s own touches; the Other Mother stole the show for me and is one of my most underrated horror villains. The book and movie are absolutely amazing and I couldn’t recommend them more. May the gaming gods bring you glory.

Torsten’s life in 2021

The Flies Inside by Torsten V, Coming March 19th 2021 – Savior Gaming

So first, I have to say my dream came true in a sense. Yes, Torsten V is now a published author. Our very own Savior will be reviewing my book in due time, but for now it’s freaking awesome to get my work out there Barnes and Noble’s website (I’ll drop a link down below for those interested)

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-flies-inside-torsten-v/1138929829?ean=9780578858821

Sadly, due to forces beyond my control I had to take a life break on account of having to find a new place to live. Thankfully I found a much better place where I can continue to keep writing and growing my platform. I’ll be posting more as well so no need to worry. May the gaming gods bring you all glory.

Silence of the Lambs (book)

The Silence of the Lambs (novel) - Wikipedia

Clarice Starling is a promising cadet at the FBI academy pushing herself she can make it in the field. Driven and determined, she’s surprised when Jack Crawford asks her to question the legendary psychopath, Dr. Hannibal Lector. After the events of Red Dragon (book) he hasn’t responded to any questioning and his advice can become crucial in catching a disturbed killer called Buffalo Bill, who flays the flesh off of woman. When Buffalo Bill kidnaps a senator’s daughter, it’s up to Starling to try and discover the identity of this madman and save her, relying on Dr. Lector for advice and clues into the mind of madness.

So this book is pretty much what kids today would call a se-boot. You can pick it up just fine on it’s own without reading Red Dragon; their are callbacks to Graham and events of the first book but the info you get is pretty sufficient. While I personally like Will Graham better as a main character, Clarice is compelling in her own way and it is interesting to see how she interacts with familiar characters. Again, the villains steal the show. Lector is pretty damn memorable and Buffalo Bill is a creepy ass son of a bitch. The end comes together really nicely and there’s a lot of tension. The pacing is good and admittedly I never got bored with it. In the end I’d definitely say it’s well worth a read. May the gaming gods bring you glory.