Night Things – by Terry M. West – Book review

Night Things – Dracula vs. Frankenstein

Night Things - Terry M WestBy Terry M West

Pleasant Storm Entertainment

Night things is populated with familiar monsters given new life, meaning and motivation by the skilled pen of Mr. West. It is the first story I have read in a long time that has kept me awake into the early hours of morning because I didn’t want to put it down. One more page, one more chapter, I had told myself frequently while reading this and I kept reading with heavy eyes, but eager heart. It is a complex interwoven tale that reveals different story lines from each of the main characters.

It is modern times and the monster brethren has grown in numbers to a population that could no longer stay hidden. There is a thin truce between mankind and monsters held together by one-sided laws that protect humans but let’s the monsters be exploited without protest. Gary Hack is a porn film director with a nasty drug habit that made a name for himself by making monster porn/snuff films. He works under the protection of monster underground crime boss Johnny Stucke. In another age, Johnny was labeled, Frankenstein’s Monster and banished from the world of man, but he worked his way back intoNight Things - Terry M West - Johnny cover civilization and built a strong domain catering to the darker human cravings in NYC. But now he has a new nemesis, an ancient evil that wants to wipe out mankind and Johnny’s kingdom along with them. The monster’s name is Dracula, and he has amassed an army of the undead to take down Johnny and then mankind in a sweeping war. He just needs to get into Johnny’s inner lair and that’s where Gary Hack comes into play. Gary is now being used by both parties as a double agent and will have his life torn apart by the ultimate monster battle, unless he can figure out a way to save his daughter, the only thing that matters to him in life, and fool both warring parties to gain his escape.

This is a finely written, fast paced tale that may have you choosing sides or loathing the hero, but either way you will be enthralled and motivated to keep the pages turning. It pits the famous monsters against each other while exposing the shady underbelly of the big city. I happen to enjoy the novellette sized story, it’s long enough to get an in-depth look at characters, but it’s still lean and doesn’t stray from the core story. Great reading for the horror fan that likes some gritty reality in their stories and a modern twist on familiar monsters.


Night Things – Dracula vs Frankenstein paperback or kindle

parlor of horror book reviews

Terry M West – ‘Night of the Car Nex’ story series

Car Nex story series

Night of the Car Nex series

Terry M West announces a new short story series based on his original story, Night of the Car Nex.

These tales will be written by some talented friends, hand picked by Terry, and they will expand on the Car Nex story-line. Car Nex is short for Carnivore from the Nexus.

The Car Nex story series presents tales from a variety of horror authors based on Terry M. West’s wicked demon creation, the Car Nex! Each Author is free to write the story with their own characters, settings and storylines, whether they are linear or alternative world adaptations.

Horror fans, get your monster on! Read the Car Nex series!
the Car Nex series on Amazon

Like the official Car Nex page on facebook

Creature Features revisited – Strange Creatures

Creature Features revisited – movie reviews

Old movies still enjoyable to watch today

For those who love to indulge in the old 1950’s sci-fi horror scene here are some gems of the time. With so many movies being made in that era, it is easy to end up watching a complete dud or incoherent Z-grade film. So, I’ve picked out some films that are a cut above the rest. Naturally, you would need to have some love for the films of the era, some nostalgic enjoyment, and not compare them to today’s super fast-paced entertainment.

The Fiend Without a Face (1958)
I had been looking for this film for a long time, only – I didn’t know the name of it. I assumed it was The Atomic Brain or Donavan’s Brain, but I was wrong. Then I see a pic from the film on a website and bingo! With a little description you’re going to say, Oh, Yeah! I know that flick! The creatures in this film are nothing more than a brain with the spinal cord still attached. The creatures move by using their spinal cords like an inch-worm. They spring through the air using their spinal cords to attack and inject a needle into the back of your neck, at the brain stem, where they can suck out your brains. In the end, a group of folks are trapped in a house surrounded by these creatures and shoot at them when attacked. Kinda’ reminds me of the bizarro, Night of the Living Dead. In NOTLD its bodies without any brains – In this its brains without any bodies. In both they are trapped in a rural area house fighting to keep the creatures outside from getting in. One potent element in this film is the ‘squish & deflating’ sound made every time one of these things is killed.


The Trollenberg Terror – aka The Crawling Eye (1958)
There is something alive in the mist, horrible creatures from another world with giant tentacles… This is not a description from the recent film, The Mist. It is from the ‘50’s British, sci-fi/horror gem, The Trollenberg Terror. Alan Brooks (Forrest Tucker), on his way to Trollenberg, Germany and the highest peak of the German Alps, meets two sisters, Sarah and Anne Pilgrim (Jennifer Jayne & Janet Munro). Anne has clairvoyant powers and is soon receiving thoughts from some entity atop the Trollenberg peak, which is  always  shrouded by cloud and mist. She sees the deaths of several mountain climbers and they are found, headless among the rocks. Deaths continue as Alan meets with a fellow scientist at the observatory keeping watch over Trollenberg. The perceived threat of Anne’s insights brings the creatures down from the peaks and they trap both tourists and scientists in the observatory. This film has a solid story, great acting, and the creatures are magnificent by ‘50’s standards (tentacles are always the hardest thing to animate). Definitely one of the better sci-fi films from the ‘50’s. Originally had an ‘X’ rating because of the gruesome decapitation scenes – although, they are mild by today’s standards.


The Monster that Challenged the World (1957)
This film never gets much respect, probably because it is often paired up as a double-feature DVD with a less than respected partner. So, I’m here to give this film some deserved praise. OK, the monster does not challenge the world, it challenges a small town and naval base at Salton Sea, CA. Located on the San Andreas Fault, an earthquake releases some horrid creatures from a fissure in the sea floor. These giant snail creatures have a taste for human snacks. Decent (robotic) creature effects drive this film. Stated as snails, they don’t look exactly like snails, they have mandible pincers, a gaping circular mouth, and their eyes are not on stems but are receded into the head. They are menacing looking, especially when one traps a little girl and her mother in a room at the naval base. Decent script and well acted, this film should be a ‘thumbs up’ for all 1950’s sci-fi aficionados.


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Hour of the Beast – book review

Hour of the Beast – C. Michael Forsyth
Outskirts Press

A good alternate title for this novel could be, An American Werewolf in College. A cross between The Howling and Animal House, we follow the tale of two twin brothers as they enter the college ranks and discover what they are really made of.

Jason and Joshua, freshman at Hallerton College NH, struggle to find their place in campus society. Jason, the perpetual nerd, and Joshua, the rugged jock, both fall for the same college co-ed. Cameron is a young blonde freshman fighting off the affections of several young men but it isn’t long before she is fighting more than the crushes from fellow students. Before either brother can profess their feelings to Cameron, the campus devolves into a killing field as the bodies of missing students are found in the campus bell-tower. The hunt is on for the savage beast that leaves mutilated students across the campus on nights of the full moon.

With the worldly-wise professor Cairo Oldewood, the boy’s Uncle Zeke, and roommate /x-treme sports enthusiast, Dylan – one twin must search the mountainous countryside to find his brother before the next full moon rises and another student meets their untimely death.

Hour of the Beast is a fast-paced horror-thriller with lots of action, suspense, and comedic relief. While it doesn’t necessarily add anything new to the werewolf genre, the story is well-told and makes for enjoyable reading. It is a fun book for the horror fan, a modern werewolf tale with all the mystery, violence and sexual overtones one would expect from the genre.

Pop Dolls – a horror story

Pop Dolls
By Michael Thomas-Knight

There are creatures that walk amongst us, parading as humans in unnatural parody – skin stretched to the limits of physics until a glossy sheen pervades – lips bulbous and swollen, a mockery of youth.

Large honey-hive breasts, devoid of natural purpose, stand firm in their death – inanimate, plastic, pretense. Scarred and hardened tissues, hidden beneath hairlines and in the folds of the body, remain unseen from the prying eyes of the camera. Eyes that don’t blink, too wide, like fright’s graven image, engage their creepy stare, as hair – color washed away by chemical poisons – sits perfectly arranged, atop their empty heads.

False youth in a zombie parade, a society of Frankenstein brides, marching to the beat of easy money on reality TV. Pop dolls, everywhere I look, drained of life and soul but still they walk, an Arian race of dead skin and plastic replacement parts, false beauty to fill their voided hearts.

Monstrous – 20 tales of Giant Creature Terror – book review

Monstrous – 20 tales of Giant Creature Terror
Edited by Ryan C. Thomas
Permuted Press

Giant creatures abound in this book of short stories by various authors. It is fun reading for someone that grew up watching all those 50’s sci-fi movies on television. As with any anthologies, there are some stories I really liked and others I didn’t care for as much. I’ll just mention the ones that stood out in my mind. D.L. Snell transports us back and forth through time travel from the present to a future world dominated by giant red ants in Past Tense, Future Imperfect. E. Anderson’s, Savage, portrayed a remarkable snow-bound world where humans live underground in order to avoid death at the hands of a giant fur-covered beast. A cancerous tumor first kills a man, then continues to grow until it threatens the whole city in, Whatever Happened to Randy. And lastly, I’ll mention a vampire that grows to 60 ft. tall after being exposed to radiation, and goes on a killing spree, only to discover there’s nowhere to hide from the rising sun when you’re that size, in The Big Bite. While Monstrous may not win any awards for best anthology collection, it made for some enjoyable in the moment reading.