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WEST VIRGINIA, THE RAMSHACKLE STATE
This is four stories about a gun runner who runs into werewolves, aliens and more. I liked the main character and all the stories had interesting beginnings. The first story, SILVER MOON, was the best. I don't want to give away the surprise, but let me say we are introduced to a character, which according to what happened in this story, lead me to believe this character would appear in the other stories. That did not happen, which is a shame. The rest of the stories quickly went downhill and I could not finish them. This author is just not up to the level of someone like Joe R. Lansdale or Jack Ketchum.
I like the genre of Weird Westerns, but finding good authors in the field is difficult.
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Occult .45: Four Tales of Gunrunning in the Weird West is a superbly entertaining collection of stories detailing the (mis)adventures of Mr. Preston Cobb, a gun-seller that can’t seem to keep himself from winding-up neck deep in the worst supernatural happenings the old west has to offer. Nick Carcano has served up four fun yet brutal courses featuring trysts with lycanthrope ladies, strange goings-on in the Sierra Nevadas, and tough-as-nails nuns with guns. Oh yeah! Are we excited yet?
The stories are not high-brow horror symbolizing the vicissitudes of certain sociopolitical groups likely to be found on the bookshelves of English professors and concerned citizens. They are just plain, unadulterated entertainment from beginning to end. Preston Cobb, though a yella-belly and quasi-conman, is so charming and real that one can’t help but be pulled in by his wit and pomp. The man knows his trade and is able to survive by the skin of his teeth.
I’d also like to mention the qualities of the reader, Mr. Jon Padgett. I’ve been listening to other recordings of Jon’s for some years now. For those interested in glimpsing the talent of this man, I recommend you mosey on over to Thomas Ligotti Online, ligotti dot net, the site dedicated to the great horror legend and founded by Jon himself, and sample his readings of Ligotti’s works, including “The Bungalow House,” and Aiken’s wonderfully creepy “Silent Snow, Secret Snow.” Let me not mince words: Jon possesses a talent for capturing the nuances of each character’s personality and quirks like I haven’t heard in quite some time. This is his first foray into the professional recording world, but believe me, with talent like this he’ll be recording some of the biggest names in horror in no time flat.
So, let’s see: we’ve got four ridiculously entertaining stories featuring one of the most fun and charming characters to come from the west since Josey Wales, all kinds of savage supernatural happenings, and one of the best readers to come along in ages. All for $15. Only a plum fool would pass up a recording like this. Strap on your Schofield, get a glass of whiskey, and have yourself one heck of a time listening to these four fun tales!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful