Like the Blob, the tour for The Montauk Monster is loose and will keep on growing, terrorizing the citizens of our fine country and beyond all through the summer. And this time, there’s no young Steve McQueen to stop it!
I’ve been working hard getting posts and interviews together between binge watching the latest seasons of Game of Thrones (Khaleesi!!!) and Orange is the New Black (and now season 3 of my favorite show on TV, Longmire). I’m not a big TV guy but this time of year, they seem to cram all of my favorite shows on at the same time. Don’t they realize I have writing to do???
The Montauk Monster had a monster week in sales for week 1, and I hope we can make week 2 even bigger, thanks to the awesome peeps who have agreed to be gracious hosts for my tour.
Here are the 5 to kick things off. If all goes according to my evil plan, we may have dozens more taking us through the dog days of summer. Stop by all of the stops and discover some great writers and bloggers along the way!
June 12 – Keith Rommel (author of The Cursed Man, soon to be a major motion picture!)
June 16 - Brian Moreland (author of The Vagrants and The Devil’s Woods)
June 18 – Jonathan Janz (author of Dust Devils and Castle of Sorrows)
June 20 - Aniko Carmean (one of the most eloquent bloggers in the world & author of Stolen Climates)
June 24 – Back in Jack (you know him, my man from Amsterdam and co-host of the Monster Men podcast!)
That’s right lasses and lads, my very first thriller, THE MONTAUK MONSTER, is finally here. Available everywhere in paperback and ebook through Pinnacle, this non-stop monster-thon is breaching the Montauk shores and spreading like a contagion across the globe. It’s always been my dream to have one of my books in paperback. I don’t know, there’s just something special about them, and this story is very special to me.
When I wrote this one, the original title I had in mind was Night of the Montauk Monster because my little pets like to do their dirty work when the moon is high and the skies are dark. Somewhere along the line my editor chopped it down a tad – maybe because it fits better on the cover.
Just last month it was named one of the best reads of the summer by Publishers Weekly. The early reviews have blown this monster lover away.
“Hunter lets it all fly, and as horrific as it may be, it’s absolutely glorious.” — Horror Novel Reviews
“I suspect you’ll be seeing copies all over the beach this summer.” — Beauty in Ruins Reviews
“One of the most anticipated summer reads of 2014!” — The Horror Bookshelf
It being release day and all, I figured I’d start thing out with a little excerpt from the first third of the book.
Margie plucked a pack of Kools and a lighter from the table and went out the kitchen door. Their house had central cooling, and it felt good to get some fresh air, even if it was slightly warmer and about to be laced with cigarette smoke.
The first cigarette disappeared like it was a prop in a magic act. She lit another with the dying stub of the first and took a long drag. Insomnia and chain smoking weren’t ingredients for a long, healthy life, but they were her crosses to bear. On nights like this, three or four coffin nails put her in the frame of mind to get a few more hours sleep.
A blazing white moon hung large and heavy in the sky. The soft, steady night wind carried the smell of mint from the patch she’d planted in the back of the yard.
“I have to make mojitos tomorrow when Les comes home,” she said, tapping her ashes into the dented tray they got from a long ago trip to the Catskills. It was sad knowing the ashtray outlived the resort.
She walked around the yard, enjoying the quiet of the night, eventually finding herself in the front yard. Every house along both sides of the street was dark. More than one of her neighbors had told her they slept better knowing she had an eye on the block. Her inability to sleep made her the unofficial neighborhood watch. In no small way, it made her embrace her condition. Everything happened for a reason.
Margie jumped when something crashed in the backyard. Flicking her cigarette into the street, she dashed along the side of the house. She pulled up short when she entered the yard.
“What the – “
Her patio table was turned over on its side. The folded umbrella had snapped in half from the fall.
It would have taken a hell of a breeze to knock that over. She sighed with relief when she got close enough to see that the glass top hadn’t cracked. Les would have a fit when she told him they needed to buy a new umbrella.
She thought about waking him up to help her right the table. It was lighter than she thought and she was able to do it on her own.
“Unbelievable,” she said, inspecting the break in the umbrella stand.
Margie whipped her head around to see what had made the noise. It had come from the impenetrably dark strip under their dogwood tree.
Stupid kids, she thought. Late night pool hopping was common in July, and her yard was part of the route between the above-ground pools to the left and right of her house.
“You’re going to pay for a new umbrella,” she called out. “I know you’re there. Swimming’s over for tonight.”
Something moved in the dark. There was no muffled teen laughter. She felt whoever was under the dogwood tree was watching her, waiting to see what she would do next.
Margie’s chest turned to ice.
She stood motionless, her hands atop the table. Try as she might, she couldn’t see a thing back there.
It was the sound of something sharp dragging across the bark of the tree.
There was more movement than ever now; the sound of shuffling feet amidst her rhododendrons.
She slowly reached into her pocket. Running her thumb over the wheel of her lighter, Margie hoped the flame would discourage any strange, stray animals from getting any closer.
Whatever was in her yard brought a palpable weight of menace.
The night breeze shifted, blowing from the dogwood’s direction. A sharp, terrible odor bit into her. She recoiled, and the light went out.
A large paw emerged from the shadows, followed by another.
Margie’s heart thudded into overdrive when its hideous face emerged.
And it was not happy.
Oh, poor Margie. The surgeon general never thought of maniancal monsters when they came up with the warning on packs of cigarettes.
If you like what you’ve read, take the plunge and pick up a copy. I believe right now, Amazon gives the best deal. Or stop by your local book store or Walmart or anyplace that sells books. If it’s not there, ask for it and it shall come! Then pack it in your beach bag next to your sunscreen and towels. You may just eye the water in front of you a little differently.
My latest guilty pleasure is the cryptid-hunting ‘reality’ show, Mountain Monsters, that can be seen on both the History Channel and Destination America. Every time I turn it on, I just picture myself on a log cabin’s front porch with a bunch of good old boys, sipping fire water and spinning yarns. These proclaimed Sons of West Virginia travel the Appalachians searching for mythical beasts and deadly creatures of yore hiding in the dense forests and mountains.
Do I believe they’re really hot on the trail of actual cryptids, from the Mothman to the Hogzilla of Hocking Hills and Fire Dragon of Pocahontas County? Hello no! Is there even the slightest chance I think any of the filmed evidence that they or their eyewitnesses present are anything but CGI, smoke and mirrors? Not a chance. Truth be told, I don’t need to know the truth. When I watch Mountain Monsters, I just want to be entertained, and on that level, they deliver.
I’ve written about America’s newfound fascination with hillbillys and reality TV. Mountain Monster is just another entry in a growing video library of redneck home cooking.
So, what makes this show work? Well, for me, I get to discover a host of new monsters supposedly roaming our land. I may be a New Yorker but I’m a freaking monster addict. Even I never heard of the Kentucky Hellhound (and I have relatives in Kentucky) or Ohio Grass Man (another take on Bigfoot). Gvie me a monter and you have my attention.
The cast is downright amusing. These are good old boys of the highest order. I get beard envy every time I watch. Wild Bill is the standout for me. He mumbles better than Boomhauer from King of the Hill and looks capable of wrestling a Bigfoot to the mat. Dude is 50 shades of loco. I worry about portly Buck having a stroke running through the woods in the dead of night. Willy, who could be Rob Zombie’s demented uncle, builds homegrown traps that look straight out of Wile E Coyote’s playbook. Trapper is the elder statesman and leader with hulking Huckleberry as his muscle and FLIR camera wielding Jeff the brains (when he’s not playing Santa Claus). Scareist of all, these boys all carry some big ass guns and aren’t afraid to pull the trigger. With all their running around in the dark, I hope they’re shooting blanks. Plus, I want my Sheepsquatch alive, dammit!
There is not an ounce of skepticism in the bunch. If they see bones, hell, a wolfman must be feeding on cattle. When they zero in on a monster, everything they see has to be related to that monster. It reminds me of when my friends and I were kids, searching for creatures we made up and convinced ourselves lived around the reservoir by my house.
My advice to you. Suspend belief, kick back with the cocktail of your choice, and just have some fun. Want to take your fun up to a whole ‘nother level? I have a drinking game for you. Take a shot of your favorite beverage every time you hear the word ‘sumbitch’ or when Wild Bill grunts ‘huh’. You’ll be crawling on your hands and knees by the end of the show.
And tell me what you think of the show. Guns up or down?
Almost 2 years since its release, SWAMP MONSTER MASSACRE is still rolling along. The world has much love for skunk apes. It’s now available as an audio book and was just given a 4 star review on Audio Book Reviewer. I want to give a big thank you to them for not only taking the time to listen to the book, but also to post such a great review. Now let’s see what we can do about getting the Skunk Ape family on the big screen where they belong!
I want a no holds barred, hold on to your seat, massacre. Bloody, nonsensical, all out war on humans by the Big Feet, Swap Apes, Sasquatchs, yetis, whatever you choose to call them. There is a whole lot of room for interpretation on what they will do, being that they may or may not exist.
B-horror movie fans rejoice, Hunter Shea has brought you the ultimate tale of bloody terror! It starts off very quickly with lots of action. We are introduced to Rooster, not a very good man at all. He kills a drug lord, in self defense of course, and is now on the run from his minions. Hijacking a tour boat full of as random a cast of colorful characters as if Shea picked them out of a hat. This is not a bad thing, but very reminiscent of my favorite B-horror flicks. Soon shipwrecked in the middle of the Everglades, they find out the hard way that they are not alone.
After accidentally killing a furry ape like creature, our band of hooligans are now in a race to survive the primal revenge of these beasts, finding that primitive monsters have tricks up their proverbial sleeves.
With an original and engaging writing style that I enjoyed a lot, Shea has created a unique and fast tour of the Everglades full of ridiculous violence, very descriptive gore, severed limbs and all. Straight up monster horror through and though. I look forward to more!
How many of you have ever gone squatching? It’s number one on my bucket list. I’m even willing to travel far just to have the experience. Where are the best places to squatch?
I was a little numb when my editor recently sent me a link to Publisher’s Weekly. They named my upcoming thriller, THE MONTAUK MONSTER, one of the best summer books of 2014! Not only that, they gave it a hell of a review. Here’s a snippet :
The urban mythologies of the Montauk Monster and the government labs on Plum Island unite to cause staggering levels of mayhem when mutant animals with toxic blood descend on a Long Island town. This wholly enthralling hulk of a summer beach read is redolent of sunscreen and nostalgia, recalling mass market horror tales of yore by John Saul, Dean Koontz, and Peter Benchley. — PW
Saul, Koontz and Benchley? That’s crazy. I’m just a guy who likes writing about monsters. :)
The buzz on the book has been fantastic. The Horror Bookshelf also named it one of the most anticipated reads of the summer, right next to Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes. Here’s what they had to say :
In The Montauk Monster, Shea utilizes the failed genetic experiment angle to craft a story that seems absolutely terrifying. I mean, this book has it all! Creepy monsters?
Check. Shadowy, top-secret projects from the government? Check. One thing is for certain after reading the synopsis of this book. Seeing how there is not just one but MANY of these creatures terrorizing the residents of Montauk, I will probably be afraid to ever step foot in the water again, fictitious story or not!
THE MONTAUK MONSTER hits shelves as a Pinnacle paperback on June 3rd. For those of you who have been following me these past 3 years, I promise you, this is the one you’ve all been waiting for.
Talk about a coup! Jack and I ran into author Keith Rommel at last year’s Monster Mania in New Joisey. His absolutely chilling novel, The Cursed Man, is currently being made into a major motion picture. When I say it is one of the most original, thought-provoking novels you’ll read all year, I ain’t kiddin’. I can’t wait for the movie.
Keeping up with our vow to bring you interviews with the best in horror, the Monster Men snagged Keith for almost an hour to talk about his books, his path to publication, what it’s like to have a movie made from his book and his favorite monsters. If the publishing gods are paying attention, Keith will become a household name in the very near future.
So, kick back, pour a mug of your favorite beverage and get to know Keith Rommel.
An Interview with Thriller Writer Keith Rommel on The Cursed Man Movie and Latest Novel in Thanatology Series
Keith Rommel is one of the hottest talents in horror and suspense today. Take a peek inside his unique mind…
Originally posted on Scar Paper Press Book Blog:
Set to be released this fall, The Cursed Man novel is being filmed for the big screen. This thriller features Alister’s relationship with Death and the impending doom that has settled in around him, and is sure to leave you with feelings of discomfort and shock. Whether you are a fan of Keith Rommel’s work or new to the series, his new film and most recent release are sure to spark your interest. The Cursed Man is the first installment of the Thanatology Series and is followed by TheLurking Man and The Sinful Man, which is set to come out this May. We got the chance to pick Keith’s brain about the series’ success in an interview and are excited for this year’s releases! Check out the interview and photos below for more about the series.
Sunbury Press: What type of reaction are you hoping for when readers…
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