The Reddening (2019) by Adam Nevill

An interesting blend of The Wicker Man and Cannibal Holocaust, but too frontloaded, almost like it was written for people who hadn’t read horror before. Aficionados can see the twists from very far away. About 40% too long. And I’m not sure it comes together at the end. This is the second novel by Nevill I have read, along with The Ritual which was turned into a movie for Netflix. I liked The Ritual and The Ritual better than The Reddening. Also, The Reddening is a stupid title.


Hard To Be A God (1964) by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky

Soviet Science Fiction is always interesting, if not exactly always a great read. Hard To Be A God does well in both aspects. The plot is about a member of a mission to a planet with a society roughly corresponding to Italy in the 15th century. The mission is to observe and report but not interfere with the development of the civilization. This chafes at the main character as the principality he has been assigned takes a sharp turn into religious authoritarianism. It would be interesting to read this and Iain M. Banks’ Inversions back-to-back.


The Case Against Satan (1962) by Ray Russell

Covers the same ground as The Exorcist, just a decade too soon, and went to a sleazy little paperback publisher rather than a marketing-supported hardback at Harper & Rowe. This is a shame because it is in many ways better written than Blatty’s tome and tells the story of the exorcism of a young girl in very non-moralistic prose. Gruesome, short, and the elderly maid gets to save the day.



I’m back into garage sci-fi. I’m currently rereading the “Childe Cycle” by Gordon Dickson. It’s interesting coming back to this as an adult. It’s roots are radically libertarian. A good series, but could have been great.

mexican sharpshooter 

I got nothing.  So I ordered this.