New Reviews

Jonathan Janz ‘Savage Species Part One: Night Terrors’ Review


Written by: Joe Hempel

Night Terrors starts the Five Part serial entitled Savage Species by Jonathan Janz.  It’s the first time major publisher Samhain publishing has decided to do this.  The first installment is being offered for FREE to entice you to pre-order the others in the series which are scheduled to come out every two weeks at about $1.50 each.

Peaceful Valley is a neighborhood in development.  The site for a new park opening, and a site for new housing development.  It’s also the site for a brutal bloodbath.

The three characters of Jesse, Emma and Coleen are sent by their newspaper to report on the opening of a new park in the town of Peaceful Valley.  They are especially interested in getting an interview with Frank Red Elk, the lone Algonquin Indian holdout of the housing buyouts in order to build this park.

Eric and Charly Florence are a married couple that have a lot of problems.  Eric is a woman’s basketball coach who has beautiful assistant coaches, and Charly is a new mother who wants nothing more than to see her husband involved in her and her kids’ lives.

The story bounces back and forth within the chapters between these two sets of characters and how they handle their internal struggles before the creatures are introduced.  For Charly you get to experience her horror as she checks on her son and sees a nine foot tall….something…leap out of the window with her son cradled in its arms.

For the three reporters they come across a college group partying in the campground section and decided to join them upon invitation.  The meat of the story (no pun intended) is displayed here.  These creatures appear and brutally terrorize the group.

Jonathan Janz graphically describes how these creatures disembowel or rape or maim whatever they come across.  It’s not for the faint of heart.  In one scene he describes how the rape rips open a woman because of the size of the creature.

From almost start to finish the book is filled with taught suspense, graphic violence and horror.  Jonathan Janz really pulls  you into this world and with his graphic descriptions doesn’t really leave anything to the imagination.  I myself was even cringing at some scenes.

This installment wasn’t without some problems.  More than once I found some typos, and a biggie for me was the fact that when Jesse was talking with a minor character named Ruth, he called her Emma, then went back to using Ruth.  I have informed the author of this error through is website.

The Bottom LineI want more.  This is nothing more than a creature feature throwback, but it’s entertaining.  It doesn’t try to bring social issues into play, it doesn’t try to make it something it’s not.  It’s clear that this series is going to be about these creatures, and their gory bloody onslaught.

You are left with all sorts of questions that will slowly be answered through the series.  What happened to the boy?  How will the problems Eric and Charly have with each other effect the search?  Just what are these creatures and why didn’t anyone else know about them?

I can’t wait for them to be answered and look forward to reading the next installment in two weeks!

Get your copy of Savage Species Part One right here.

Rating: 4/5


About the author: Check Joe out at Top of the Heap Reviews

About The Overseer (1669 Articles)
Author of Say No to Drugs, writer for Blumhouse, Dread Central, Horror Novel Reviews and Addicted to Horror Movies.

8 Comments on Jonathan Janz ‘Savage Species Part One: Night Terrors’ Review

  1. I am not sure what to think about this book …since I am not a big fan of intense violence especially that which is inflicted on women to the degree mentioned above. The review itself is interesting though…as always…just me…Vitina


  2. Hey, Joseph. I completely understand your point, and I do think you’ll find the creatures detestable…to all genders. Of course I’m biased, but I really think you’ll enjoy the story instead of finding it gratuitous. Just my opinion, so take it for what it’s worth. 😉


  3. Thank you for your response to my comment…I am Vitina….I just use my husbands page ….and I will consider you point made here…as always…just me…Vitina


  4. That’s cool, Vitina. I appreciate your considering my thoughts. And I respect very much your feelings about violence. I detest it too, especially toward women. If you do check out the tale, I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts, but thanks either way for your comments.


    • Joe Hempel here (the reviewer).

      I believe that the violence isn’t there for violence sake as much as it might read like it is. I think it sets up quite nicely what these creatures are capable of, but not necessarily a why they are so enraged. I think as it goes along we will learn the “why”. It’s just not possible to get all the answers in a serial, which is why I love the format.

      If reading it in snippits isn’t your thing, the book is going to come out as a full novel once the serial is completed, and then you can get the full picture at once.

      I’m really looking forward to June 18th….I’ll be on vacation almost away from all technology, so I’m hoping I can squeeze some sort of wi-fi somewhere to get it on my Kindle…unless Jonathan wants to send me a copy 😉


  5. Thank you so much, Joe, for your comments here. I really appreciate your sharing your persepective. And if you’d like a copy of The Children, shoot me an email at . I’ll see what I can do. 😉


  6. Reblogged this on Top of the Heap Reviews and commented:
    I’ve reviewed the first three entries into Jonathan Janz’s Savage Species series for Horror Novel Reviews. Part One is still free! Make sure you check it out. Part Two is out now, and Part Three comes out July 2nd! Come back the following week for my pre-release review of Part Four!


  7. Not sure how this works….it says page not found 😦 Really trying to reblog this…grrrrr…..


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