Essentials

Meta

Pages

Categories

  • Archives

  • Visit She Never Slept’s Floral Fantasies

  • Double Feature Press

  • Support SNS

  • Spooktacular Sponsors


    _______________________

    Dark Horse Comics

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Think Geek - Stuff for Smart Masses

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Inkwell Awards - To promote and educate about the art of comic book inking.

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Arkham Bazaar - Books, Films, Apparel, Audio, Games and Oddities

    _______________________



    _______________________

    From the beautifully insane mind of Liv Rainey-Smith - Lovecraftian adornment and art on Etsy

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Strange Aeons - She Never Slept's Favorite Magazine

    _______________________



    _______________________

    The H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society - All the Lovecraft Swag You Want and More!

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Sigh Co. Graphics - a fabulous design and print company out of New Orleans, catering to the dark and strange.

    _______________________



    _____________________

    Dagon Industries: Gifts for that hard to shop for Cultist in your life!

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Immortal Gothic -Embrace Your Darker Side...

    _______________________



    _______________________

    Phantastically Strange Author Trent Zelazny

    _______________________



  • SNS Spooktacular Swag

  • Follow She Never Slept on Networked Blogs

  • RSS She Never Slept

    • Man With No Name: A Nanashi Novella April 20, 2017
      Man With No Name Written by: Laird Barron Published by: Journal Stone (March 2016) Series: Nanashi Novella Paperback: 106 pages ISBN-10: 1942712863 ISBN-13: 978-1942712862 ASIN: B01ATOL62M Where to buy: Journalstone, Amazon.com (print), Amazon.com (e-book), and other fine book retailers. Publisher’s Comments: Nanashi was born into a life of violence. Delivered from the streets by the Heron Clan, he […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh: The Follow-up Interview September 25, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, I know… it has been a while. This year has been a trying one for me and I have been dealing with some “real life” stuff…  scarier than anything I post here. I apologize for our absence. But it was brief this time. Now that “real life” is levelling out, we are […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Now available: The Lovecraft eZine 2014 Megapack! August 10, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, So for the brief week off. But I had a case of life. I was on a bit of a mission and it went quite swimmingly. But fear not wicked ones. I am still here to bring you the strange and spooky! Today we have some news from a wonderful ezine […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • A Conversation With Craig Yoe August 1, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, Today I was fortunate enough to sit and have a chat with the wonderfully fascinating creative genius, Craig Yoe. Craig and I met at HeroesCon this summer when he accepted an award at The Inkwells on Steve Ditko‘s behalf (sort of). I was beyond thrilled when this incredible talent agreed to […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh —- The Review! July 29, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, It is day seven of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out Tuesday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director – Edward Martin III – of the film, Wednesday’s article written by yours truly, and Thursday’s interview with Sean Strauss […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh: Interview (/Happy-Hour) With Actress Tara Walker July 28, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, It is day six of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out Tuesday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director –Edward Martin III – of the film, Wednesday’s article written by yours truly, and Thursday’s interview with Sean Strauss – […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh: An Interview With Director of Photography Ryan K. Johnson July 27, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, It is day five of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out Tuesday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director – Edward Martin II – of the film, Wednesday’s article written by yours truly, and Thursday’s interview with Sean […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh – Zombies Need Love Too July 25, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, It is day four of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out Tuesday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director – Edward Martin III – of the film, Wednesday’s article written by yours truly, and yesterday’s interview […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh – An Interview With Documentarian and Location Manager Sean Strauss July 24, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, It is day three of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out Tuesday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director of the film and yesterday’s article written by yours truly!  Today we will be talking with […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt
    • Flesh of my Flesh – Through The Eyes of the 2nd Assistant Director – Madness, Mayhem, and Love July 23, 2015
      Hello Ghouls and Boils, Welcome to day two of Flesh of my Flesh week! FomF was a zombie movie filmed here in Portland, OR. Please check out yesterday’s interview to hear about it’s inception and long awaited release from the Writer/Director of the film.  Today you get to hear me ramble on about my time on the set. […]
      Sarah L. Gerhardt

Where The Dead Fear To Tread

Where The Dead Fear To Tread

Written By:  M.R. Gott
Published by: Untreed Reads
Page Count: 196 pages (estimated)
ASIN: B005LRY0LC
Where to buy:
AmazonUntreed Reads Store, and other fine book retailers

Publisher’s Comments:
A police officer and a serial killer search separately for a missing child while running a malevolent labyrinth populated by creatures they never knew existed.

Former prosecutor William Chandler, disgusted with his past inaction, spills the blood of those who victimize children to correct the ills he sees in the world. A self-admitted serial killer and uncomfortable with his actions, Chandler attends the funerals of those whose lives he has taken in an effort to retain a true understanding of the nature of violence.

The carnage left in his wake is investigated by Detective Kate Broadband, who becomes progressively more comfortable with the corpses left by Chandler. Envying the power she sees in him, she pursues Chandler as each search for Maria Verde, a missing eight-year-old girl.

As Chandler and Broadband draw closer to discovering what happened to Maria they are forced to confront The Devourer, an unnatural being trafficking in stolen children.

Where the Dead Fear to Tread is a tale of hard-boiled macabre, bridging numerous genres to reveal a story of horror, crime and revenge.

Hello Ghouls and Boils,

Tonight our Assistant Editor, Marc Nocerino, is going to talk about this exciting new book – “Where the Dead Fear to Tread”. This review will be followed by some terrorific news! Enjoy, my fiends!

Abstrusely,
Sarah L. Covert

***UPDATE***

After more than a week, I still find myself thinking about these characters, and the story itself, on a daily basis. That is no small feat. And despite what I consider to be some fairly major stylistic and technical issues, I cannot deny that this is one hell of a story.

As such, I am upgrading my original “3 Tentacle” review… keep reading to see how many it got in retrospect!

 

When I first learned that I would be reviewing Where The Dead Fear To Tread by M.R. Gott, I was excited. This book was marketed as a cross-genre noir/horror novel. I heard that it had vampires, ghosts, werewolves, magicians, and even a bit of police action. I thought it would have maybe a little bit of a Dresden Files feel, but darker. That sounded like a lot of fun.

Let me be clear, this book is –not– anything like Butcher’s Dresden Files; in fact it isn’t even what most people would probably consider fun. What it –is-, is frantic, horrific, brutal, and without doubt the darkest thing I have read in years. Maybe in my life. Noir doesn’t even come close to describing it, not even in the most literal translation of noir as Black. This book is darker than black, it is the color of the void at the center of a singularity. Where The Dead Fear To Tread makes the Satanic Bible read like a light Sunday romance in comparison. Parts of this book were so disturbing that it was, at times, difficult for me to believe what I had just read.

I write and review horror, so I’m not only used to grotesquerie, I actually quite enjoy it. Even so, this book pushed boundaries from the first page, and didn’t stop until the last.

M.R. Gott is certainly not afraid to take a new and intriguing look at some old horror staples, like the aforementioned “usual suspects” of the genre. He comes up with some interesting new creatures as well, including a werewolf hybrid and an intelligent worm with necromantic powers. Gott’s main villain, a vampire known only as “The Devourer” is truly chilling; a heartless, inhuman beast with detachable eyes and a penchant for children.

Gott writes action and violence better than most. The action sequences are descriptive  and intense. He truly has a talent for describing the brutal and atrocious.

But despite M.R. Gott’s undeniable creativity, many parts of Where The Dead Fear To Tread read like a technical manual — or a coroner’s report. There is a tremendous emotional distance created by Gott’s almost clinical approach to the atrocities he  writes about. While this detached viewpoint works well for the action sequences, it makes it more difficult to bond with the characters. It doesn’t help that the two main characters are an emotionally closed-off cop and a vigilante serial killer. These kind of complex characters would be hard to bond with under the best of circumstances, and unfortunately Gott’s detached writing style makes it that much harder to do.

The entire book is written in the present tense, which might sound like a way to ensure the reader is kept “in the moment”, but it actually fails in that regard. I found myself feeling more distanced from the events happening primarily because his use of present tense made the reading clunky, especially when going “back in time” for certain scenes but writing them as if they were still taking place in the present. It unfortunately backfired for me, coming across as more of a parlor trick than a legitimate way to immerse the reader into the story.

Gott’s dialog  also come across as a bit flat, with most characters speaking in the same voice (one that I assume is Gott’s). The people and conversations felt more like they were inserted only to further the story or explain Gott’s story and less like people actually talking to one another. I understand that some writers are more interested in the story they are telling than the people in that story; but despite copious back-story and explicated reasons for their actions and combined with the distantly analytical tone of the work, the people in Where The Dead Fear To Tread generally lacked pathos.

However, on the other hand, I’m honestly not sure that I would want to read this story from any closer than a long arm’s length. As I said, the topics covered are grisly and not for the faint of heart. Gott’s action sequences take violence to a new level; heroes and villains alike commit horrific acts in great detail; and the pace never lets up. Never. If it weren’t for that sense of distance from the actions, I honestly may not have been able to finish the book. So, blessing and curse. From an editorial/review standpoint, I was disappointed that the book didn’t pull me in emotionally; but from the perspective of a reader I’m glad that it didn’t.

My last criticism of this book is simply that the title does not fit at all because, in fact, there is nowhere in this story that the Dead (be they vampires, ghosts, animate corpses, or just those who are emotionally dead inside) fear to tread at all.

Final Thoughts:
Where The Dead Fear To Tread is a difficult book to succinctly review. It had some amazingly creative aspects: Gott writes with unrelenting intensity and frenetic pacing, and the violence is utterly disturbing; however the use of all present tense was distracting, the dialog was flat, and the sense of distance between reader and story was too large.

I would recommend this book to anyone who really enjoys an action packed gore-fest and who doesn’t have a weak stomach. I would not recommend this book to the kind of reader who likes to get in close to the characters and feel like a part of the story themselves. 

Overall, I give Where The Dead Fear To Tread 3 out of 5 tentacles.

UPDATE:After much deliberation and reflection, I have decided to upgrade this review by a full tentacle. Despite some disappointing technical aspects of the writing, I simply cannot deny the fact that M.R. Gott told a story that I can’t shake out of my head. As far as I’m concerned, that is easily worth another tentacle.

Marc Nocerino, Assistant Editor (Columnist/Reviewer)

Write a Comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Shortcuts & Links

Search

Latest Posts

SEO Powered by Platinum SEO from Techblissonline