THE WICKED HEART
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
4M ago
The Wicked Heartby Christopher Pike © 1993 by Christopher Pike. Cover Art by Dru Blair.   Spoiler-Free Review: The Wicked Heart read like a promising rough draft. I can see how that would make it an ideal candidate for The Midnight Club Netflix series. Some cool ideas are swimming around in this book, but the plotting and characters leave a lot to be desired. Pike is known for methodical and twisted plots with complex and engaging characters. This book comes close but ultimately misses the mark on both counts. The plot was kept moving at a steady clip, but the characters felt rushed and i ..read more
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THE BABYSITTER III
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Babysitter IIIby R.L. Stine © 1993 by Robert L Stine. Cover Art not credited. Sequel to: The Babysitter & The Babysitter II Prequel to: The Babysitter IV     Spoiler-Free Review: The Babysitter III felt like a sequel in search of a story. I’ll start with the good; at least Jenny wasn’t taking on yet another babysitting job after her experiences in the first two books. It changed the formula by introducing Jenny’s cousin Debra as this book’s titular babysitter. Unfortunately, I still saw the twist ending coming from a mile away. It had too many similarities to other Stine book ..read more
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THE CHRISTMAS KILLER
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Christmas Killerby Patricia Windsor © 1991 by Patricia Windsor. Cover Art not credited.     Spoiler-Free Review: The Christmas Killer was a pleasant surprise for me. A Christmas miracle, if you will. Praise Saturn. Patrica Windsor delivered some of the best-written prose I’ve seen in a Point Horror book. It’s really a shame this wasn’t a more popular title. She managed to contrast the dark and depressing aspects of winter with the bright and merry elements of Christmas to maximum effect. The use of a foreboding atmosphere with its slow-burn plot really hit all of my horror sweet ..read more
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WITCH
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
Witchby Christopher Pike © 1990 by Christopher Pike. Cover Art by Brian Kotzky.     Spoiler-Free Review: Witch had a few things I appreciated. The shift in perspectives from chapter to chapter kept things interesting. I liked the theme of power coming at a great cost. I enjoyed many of the side characters, from Sally the dumb waitress to the station wagon full of creepy old lady witches. In fact, I kinda wanted a story that focused exclusively on the station wagon full of old ladies. Beyond that, Witch bears the unfortunate distinction of being one of Pike’s blandest works that I hav ..read more
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THE LAST VAMPIRE
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Last Vampireby Christopher Pike © 1994 by Christopher Pike. Cover Art by Brian Kotzky. Sequels: The Last Vampire 2: Black Blood & The Last Vampire 3: Red Dice     Spoiler-Free Review: The Last Vampire delivers on what I have come to expect from Pike; complicated characters with dubious morals in fucked up situations. Alisa, also known as Sita, was a bit grating as the main character, although she did grow on me over the course of the book. Starting out she was a little bit too obnoxiously good at everything. My eyes rolled more than a few times. I would have liked it better i ..read more
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THE BEAST 2
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Beast 2by RL Stine © 1995 by Parachute Press. Cover Art by Broeck Steadham. THE BEAST ® is a registered trademark of Paramount Parks, Inc. Sequel to: The Beast     Spoiler-Free Review: The Beast 2 is the sequel to one of my favorite RL Stine books. I like to think of The Beast duology as the “lost” Goosebumps books (where “lost” means “published by a different publisher”). Regardless, they fit in perfectly with the rest of the franchise. I’m having difficulty summarizing my thoughts on this one. It wasn’t good, but it wasn’t bad either. So far as RL Stine’s track record on sequel ..read more
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THE ETERNAL ENEMY
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Eternal Enemyby Christopher Pike © 1993 by Christopher Pike. Cover Art by Brian Kotzky.     Spoiler-Free Review: The Eternal Enemy was a mixed bag. I love everything about the cover art of the 90s paperback edition. The VCR-centric plot was unique and dated in the best of ways. This was definitely one of Pike’s weirdest, and it’s a shame the overall book felt rushed. The main character didn’t feel as vibrant as Pike’s protagonists typically do, and the twist relied on a momentum-stopping forty-page info dump just as things were getting really interesting. I know Pike was turning ..read more
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THE BABYSITTER IV
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Babysitter IVby RL Stine © 1995 by Robert L. Stine. Cover Art not credited. Sequel to: The Babysitter, The Babysitter II, & The Babysitter III     Spoiler-Free Review: I did not go into this book with high expectations, so I was very pleasantly surprised when this book took a fresh direction. The Babysitter III had squeezed every last bit out of using Mr. Hagan as a villain, so I was happy to see that he was barely mentioned all in The Babysitter IV. In a lot of ways, this book was about Jenny reclaiming the narrative for herself. The way that Jenny’s past experiences ca ..read more
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STRANGER WITH MY FACE
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
Stranger with My Faceby Lois Duncan © 1981 by Lois Duncan. Cover Art not credited.     Spoiler-Free Review: Stanger with My Face was more or less exactly what I expected from Lois Duncan. I really appreciate the way that she writes characters. All but one of the characters felt really well-developed. The story itself was a slow burn. There was a really creepy concept at the core of this book. All of these are things I typically love, but I still found myself struggling with this one at times. I was never bored or disengaged, but the slow pacing did become tedious after awhile. I shou ..read more
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THE LAST VAMPIRE 3: RED DICE
Daniel Stalter » Pulp Horror
by Daniel Stalter
7M ago
The Last Vampire 3: Red Diceby Christopher Pike © 1995 by Christopher Pike. Cover Art by Danilo Ducak. Sequel to: The Last Vampire & The Last Vampire 2: Black Blood     Spoiler-Free Review: The Last Vampire 3: Red Dice opens with some of the wildest action in the series so far. It cemented my feeling that these books could adapt really well in the right hands. Christopher Pike once again does a good job of raising the stakes so it never feels like a complete retread of the past. We get glimpses of different parts of Sita’s past, which I felt was well-balanced. It gave us jus ..read more
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