Want the inside scoop on horror novels hitting shelves this month? We’ve got a breakdown for you. Remember to click the images if you’re interested in making a purchase, and drop a line if you’re noticing I’ve missed something!
Release date: August 1, 2013
Synopsis: “Deadwood meets The Walking Dead in this wild and profane Western romp featuring zombies, werewolves, killer bees, and one pissed-off gun-slinging preacher.
The Wild West has never seen the likes of Reverend Jebidiah Mercer, a hard man wielding a burning Bible and a bottle of whiskey in the battle between God and the Devil. Frankly, he’s not sure he gives a damn who wins.
As the not-so-good Reverend tangles with a vengeful shaman and his undead army and joins a renegade named Flower to battle a horde of cannibalistic fiends, only this is certain: Mercer’s blasphemous journey is laced with relentless action, terrifying evil, and nonstop humor.
This supernatural epic of the Old West that never was will leave you heartily cheering for the good guys—if you can just figure out who the good guys are.”
Release date: August 6, 2013
Synopsis: “Some houses should be left alone.
In 1972, twenty-five people were brutally murdered in one of the bloodiest massacres in Texas history. The mystery of who committed the killings remains unsolved.
Forty years later, Sarah Donovan is dating an exciting man, Dean Stratton. Sarah’s scared of just about everything—heights, tight places, the dark—but today she must confront all her fears, as she joins Dean and another couple on an exploring adventure. The old abandoned Blevins House, the scene of the gruesome massacre, is rumored to be haunted.
The two couples are about to discover the mysterious house has been waiting all these years, craving fresh prey. And down in the cellar they will encounter a monstrous creature that hungers for more than just human flesh.”
Release date: August 13, 2013
Synopsis: “Less than a hundred years in the future, pollution, economic disaster, and the rapacious greed of the corporate oligarchy has brought America to its knees and created dystopian urban nightmares, of which L.A. may be the worst.
Curtis, Japh, and Jool are film extras, who—with the help of a couple of very gutsy women—survived being anonymous players in a “live-action” film in which getting killed on-screen meant getting killed for real. Surviving the shoot made them rich enough to escape the post-apocalyptic Hell that L.A. has become. But their survival was not what Panoply Studios’ CEO Val Margolian had in mind, especially since it cost his company millions.
Now he’s taking his revenge. After several plainclothes police are found dead in the former extras’ new home, the bucolic, peaceful town of Sunrise, California, the entire town is subjected to Margolian’s invidious plan to punish the entire town…and make a fortune doing it. Margolian has created toxic, murderous wasp-like mechanical creatures to set upon the people of Sunrise, while his film crew captures the carnage in what promises to be the bloodiest “live-action” film yet. With their haven from L.A. besieged by the deadly assault, the former extras—and their fellow townspeople—are faced with a grim task: to defeat the creatures and take back their town and their freedom. Michael Shea’s Assault on Sunrise is a saga of courage and sacrifice in a world gone mad.”
Release date: August 13, 2013
Synopsis: “In the gripping conclusion to the action-packed “standard bearer” (Booklist) of zombie series, the threat of death is given new life.
Benny Imura and his friends have found the jet and Sanctuary—but neither is what they expected. Instead of a refuge, Sanctuary is a hospice, and the soldiers who flew the plane seem to be little more than bureaucrats who have given up hope for humanity’s future. With Chong hovering between life and death, clinging to his humanity by a thread, Benny makes a startling discovery: A scientist may have discovered a cure for the zombie plague. Desperate to save Chong, Benny and his friends mount a search and rescue mission. But they’re not the only ones on the hunt. The reapers are after the cure too, and they want to use it turn all the zombies into superfast shock troops—and wipe humanity off the face of the earth.
In this riveting conclusion to the Rot & Ruin series, the battle to end all battles is just beginning.”
Release date: August 15, 2013
Synopsis: “A circus clown willing to give anything to be funny. A spectral gunslinger who must teach a young boy to defend the ones he loves. A lonely widower making a farewell tour of the places that meant the world to his late wife. A faded Hollywood actress out to deprive her ex-husband of his prize possession. A grieving mother who will wait by the railroad tracks for a ghostly train that always has room for one more. A young West Virginia miner whose only hope of survival is a bedtime story. These are just some of the characters to be found in Tell My Sorrows to the Stones.”
Release date: August 19, 2013
Synopsis: “In the third hilarious installment of The Reluctant Reaper series, Kirsty d’Arc’s first Reaper mission gets personal when her evil ex-boss escapes from Hell and physically possesses Shannon, Kirsty’s BFF. To reunite rightful body and soul, Kirsty must outwit a demented demon, fend off an insane strangler, and bend the very rules of Hell and Earth.
Kirsty may be a full-fledged Reaper with a scythe of her own, but Dante is still miffed that she broke the Reaper rules to take down her evil ex-boss, Conrad. And Dante is not above saying “I told you so” when Conrad develops strange demonic powers and escapes to the Mortal Coil. Although barely speaking, Kirsty and Dante are sent on Kirsty’s first Reaper mission: bring Conrad back alive…er…dead…er…Just bring him back to Hell.
But before they can re-scythe him, Conrad evicts his own daughter’s soul to take over her body. Yes, he’s not a good person. So it’s up to two good people (who are, ironically, from Hell) to fix this. But can Kirsty and Dante put their differences aside in time to take down Conrad and save his daughter?”
Release date: August 20, 2013
Synopsis: “On a damp October night, beautiful young Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive cult-horror-film director Stanislas Cordova—a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years.
For McGrath, another death connected to this seemingly cursed family dynasty seems more than just a coincidence. Though much has been written about Cordova’s dark and unsettling films, very little is known about the man himself.
Driven by revenge, curiosity, and a need for the truth, McGrath, with the aid of two strangers, is drawn deeper and deeper into Cordova’s eerie, hypnotic world.
The last time he got close to exposing the director, McGrath lost his marriage and his career. This time he might lose even more.”
Release date: August 27, 2013
Synopsis: “Meet the operatives of the Carnacki Institute—JC Chance: the team leader, brave, charming, and almost unbearably arrogant; Melody Chambers: the science geek who keeps the antisupernatural equipment running; and Happy Jack Palmer: the terminally gloomy telepath. Their mission: Do Something About Ghosts. Lay them to rest, send them packing, or just kick their nasty ectoplasmic arses…
Their latest assignment takes JC and the team to a small country village, site of a famously haunted inn. At first, JC thinks that the spirits in the King’s Arms are more the stuff of urban legend than anything that needs the Ghost Finders’ expertise. Then one story rings true: the tale of a traveler trapped by an unusual thunderstorm who retired to her room for the night—and vanished.
Trapped by an unusual thunderstorm—like the one that begins raging outside shortly after they arrive…
As the team investigates, they are forced, one by one, to face some hard truths about themselves, their relationships, and the haunting itself—truths that may push Happy Jack over the edge into the madness that he has always feared…”
Release date: August 27, 2013
Synopsis: “Two men, a bitter rivalry, and a quarter-century of unspeakable horrors. Herbert West’s crimes against nature are well-known to those familiar with the darkest secrets of science and resurrection. Obsessed with finding a cure for mankind’s oldest malady, death itself, he has experimented upon the living and dead, leaving behind a trail of monsters, mayhem, and madness. But the story of his greatest rival has never been told — until now. Dr. Stuart Hartwell, a colleague and contemporary of West, sets out to destroy him by uncovering the secrets of his terrible experiments, only to become what he initially despised: a reanimator of the dead. For more than twenty years, the two scientists race each other to master the mysteries of life . . . and unlife. From the grisly battlefields of the Great War to the haunted coasts of Dunwich and Innsmouth, from the halls of fabled Miskatonic University to the sinking of the Titanic, their unholy quests leave their mark upon the world — and create monsters of them both.”
Release date: August 27, 2013
Synopsis: “Darkness, both literal and psychological, holds its own unique fascination. Despite our fears, or perhaps because of them, readers have always been drawn to tales of death, terror, madness, and the supernatural, and no more so than today when a wildly imaginative new generation of dark dreamers is carrying on in the tradition of Poe and Lovecraft and King, crafting exquisitely disturbing literary nightmares that gaze without flinching into the abyss—and linger in the mind long after.
Multiple award-winning editor Ellen Datlow knows the darkest corners of fiction and poetry better than most. Once again, she has braved the haunted landscape of modern horror to seek out the most chilling new works by both legendary masters of the genre and fresh young talents. Here are twisted hungers and obsessions, human and otherwise, along with an unsettling variety of spine-tingling fears and fantasies. The cutting edge of horror has never cut deeper than in this comprehensive showcase of the very best the field has to offer. Enter at your own risk.”