October 2, 2015

NAVY SEALS VS. ZOMBIES looks like it’s got all kinds of military-killing-zombies goodness. Here’s the synopsis:

After losing all contact with the Vice President during a routine campaign stop in Louisiana, the U.S. Government sends in a team of Navy SEALs for the rescue. Dropped into a warzone, the SEALs quickly discover that they aren’t dealing with a normal enemy. The city is under siege by hordes of fast moving, flesh eating undead. The infection is spreading and urban warfare has been unleashed. With no cure in sight and time running out, the elite unit has to survive their most horrific mission of all.

Looks great, though the soldiers seem to be more the earnest, good-hearted, salt-of-the-earth cardboard cutouts in BLACKHAWK DOWN than the realistic killers in ZERO DARK THIRTY. I’ll be checking this one out for sure.


September 30, 2015

KINIf you like reading horror, you’ve come to the right book. That book is KIN by Kealan Patrick Burke, one of the best horror novels I’ve read in years.

On a hot summer day, Claire staggers naked and bloody from a nightmare on a remote farm where a cannibal family preys on outsiders. Rescued, she now must cope with the horror of what she experienced, along with the loss of her friends. In time, she realizes she can’t move on unless she gets vengeance, aided by the boy who rescued her on the road and an Iraq War vet who wants his own revenge for what the family did to his brother.

KIN reads like a sequel to THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. The book takes place after the horror, though it is nightmarishly revealed in flashbacks. Claire got away, but she can never really leave what she experienced, plagued by guilt, grief and a desire for revenge that will take her back into the heart of darkness.

I was drawn to the novel because the idea sounded so interesting, and stuck with it because it’s frankly beautifully written. Burke creates flesh and blood characters with loving detail, including the bizarre family that preys on strangers. The style is accessible and engaging. When the moments of horror are revealed, they’re powerful. The book is fantastic. Some may find the final confrontation a bit rushed after the long setup, however.

Every once in a while, you fall in love with a book, and sometimes you become a fan of both a book and its author. I may be the latter, and will be checking out more of Burke’s fiction.


September 28, 2015

It’s always great to bump into old friends … unless they remind you of that time you participated in a horrifying human experiment.

September 26, 2015

In INTERSTELLAR, Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), a former astronaut, makes his living as a farmer with his two children and father in law. It’s the future, after crop blights have destroyed wheat and okra, and the survivors of the resulting famine must all dedicate themselves to farming, mostly corn, to keep the world going. Droughts produce massive dust storms, making this challenging. Governments haven’t so much collapsed as shrunk due to lack of tax revenue, with no standing armies and no interest in space exploration.

Through accident that appears engineered by some unseen force, Cooper is drawn to what’s left of NASA, which offers him a vital and unique mission–travel out to Saturn, where a mysterious alien species has placed a wormhole leading to another galaxy with habitable planets. While most of humanity is focused on making do with Earth, a group of visionaries see the writing on the wall–that the planet’s life-sustaining systems are dying–and that humanity’s only hope is to colonize one of these planets. So off Cooper goes with several explorers to visit these planets and find the original explorers who landed there to report back whether the planet was habitable.

The film has an epic feel to it, though the beginning is somewhat rushed. Once they get off Earth, things really get rolling. The film plays with concepts like time relativity, shows us strange worlds, builds conflict between selfish instinct and what’s good for the species, and offers amazing effects as the mission goes to hell. The film’s ideas are served up Hollywood style but are interesting and engaging. Overall, I enjoyed the ride despite the plot holes. In particular, Matt Damon’s character, Dr. Mann, a heroic explorer reduced by time and loneliness, was a terrific addition.

INTERSTELLAR reminded me a lot of sci-fi author Stephen Baxter’s MANIFOLD series, which was brilliant–and which I highly recommend, more so than the movie, if you’re interested in this theme. Whereas Baxter pulled no punches, INTERSTELLAR delivers more hope and humanity to please film-going audiences, and I was happy it did so with minimal saccharine.

Overall, it’s a good movie about how the long-term survival of our species may depend on a small group of people willing to venture out into space to find new worlds and resources for humanity to inhabit.

September 22, 2015

Tooth and Nail by Craig DiLouieI would like to invite you to join me for a special online event. In it, you will have the opportunity to creatively experience the dire events of my novel TOOTH AND NAIL. The event will take the form of a role-playing game, meaning that you will be able to decide the actions of your own character reacting interactively to the story as it evolves.

If you aren’t sure how role-playing games work, rest assured that the event will be very friendly to newcomers. And everything you need to know will be explained beforehand. The event itself will be held on Sunday, October 11 from 12PM to 3PM Pacific Time. Registration for the event is closing soon. If you have any questions (about the event, role-playing, or otherwise) please email brad@rpglory.com.

There is a $60 fee that will go towards helping the event organizer, RPGlory.com, host this and future events with both myself and other authors.

I hope to get to see you at the game!

Click here to sign up. Basically, you’re contributing to RPGlory.com’s fund-raising campaign, and then select “Game with Craig DiLouie” as your perk.