Monday, February 18, 2013

Merciless [Book Review]

Genre - Horror
Year Published - *2012 (*Published by Black Bed Sheet Books)
Length - 126 [digital] pages *Read on my Nook
Written by Brandon Ford

Rating: 5 Skulls

Plot Summary:
Kyra and Claire have never met, never spoken, but by the time this crisp autumn evening comes to a close, they'll have formed an unbreakable bond and an indestructible unity as they face an evil nothing in this world could have ever prepared them for.

Kidnapped at gunpoint, they are bound, beaten, and savaged by a madman whose sole purpose is to enforce pain and impose suffering. Driving them far from their peaceful suburban community, he becomes more monstrous with each mile that separates them from any and all familiarity.

Kyra and Claire are mere innocents, taken against their will and brutalized by a man who, as they soon realize, is not a man at all. He is ruthless. He is relentless. He is MERCILESS.

First off, let me just tell you that this book is an Anthology, with the actual story of Merciless being more of a Novella (roughly 75 pgs, including an excellent Introduction)

The book also includes 3 additional short stories:

'The Neighbor' - an "extreme horror" tale
'Last Call' - an homage to author Jack Ketchum
'All I Ever Wanted' - another "extreme horror" tale

If you have read any of my past reviews on Ford's work ('Crystal Bay' and 'Splattered Beauty') then you will recall that he is one of my all-time-favorite independent authors - who deserves to be a household name!
I have called him our "modern-day" Richard Laymon and I still stick to that!

I do not want to get into any of the details of the above stories (better that you don't know anything) other than to tell you that each one is horrifying in its own right. Ford pulls absolutely no punches in these tales, in fact, he pushes the boundaries quite far! 
(let me just say that 'All I Ever Wanted' was not something that I would have ever chosen to read, yet I could not stop turning the pages!) 
Ford does that to you - he sucks you in, from the get-go, with superb character development, and then takes you on a riveting (brutal & graphic) journey that leads to a climactic finale!

If you have never read Brandon Ford, then start with this one - he's at his best here!
(I guarantee that you will then be checking out his other books!)
Each story has my 5 Skull rating!

On a side-note, in my travels, I somehow missed his novel 'Pay Phone' (which I have since purchased) so stay tuned for a review of that one, in the future, as well...


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