Lenni Reviews: “The Scarlet Gospels”(Hellraiser #2) by Clive Barker


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After reading Hellbound Heart, I made sure to get my hands on the sequel. This stars Detective Harry D’Amour, who has devoted himself to the supernatural after an encounter that killed his partner. As Pinhead makes some major moves leaving a trail of death, Harry and other mystically inclined friends move to stop him.

Okay… I kinda liked this book. It functions really well on it’s own. My problem with it is that it’s a sequel to a book that barely featured Pinhead. I’m left with a feeling that the movie’s popularity impacted this story; because the main Cenobite in the first was female and there’s hardly a mention of her here. 

In viewing this book as a better sequel to the movies (anything after Hellraiser 2 is not worth watching, in my opinion), it’s a worthy addition to the universe. It’s really dark, the stakes are high, and it’s just brutal – as to be expected of anything Hellraiser.  It was just strange reading these back to back and not feeling the connection from one to the next. I liked it but this is clearly riding on Pinhead’s popularity. 3.4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Hellbound Heart” by Clive Barker


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Once I hear some media I enjoy is based on a book, I almost always add it to my To Be Read list. This book pretty much follows the movie, Frank is bored with life and seeking ultimate pleasure so he uses the puzzle box to summon the Cenobites. What’s different is Pinhead isn’t the “lead” cenobite. The book has a female as the leader.

But I’m glad I read it. It was cool to see the origins of such iconic characters. Despite already knowing the story beats because I’ve seen the movies a bajillion times, I found the book riveting and I can’t wait to read the next one.  4.7 out of 5.


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Lenni Reviews: “Sleeping Beauties” by Stephen King and Owen King

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When women fall asleep, they are covered in a cocoon like a catapillar. If anyone tries to wake them, they lash out with terrible violence. At the same time, a mysterious woman calling her self Evie appears, cryptically knowing what happened to all the women and how to cure them.

I read this right after I re-read The Stand and I found it funny the people start forming these committees. It just made me laugh.

Also, co-reading Drifting Classroom at the same time is a mistake I will not repeat…

But back to the point, Eveie’s plan confuses me. If the point was to make men value women more, she let a LOT of women get killed in the process (this isn’t spoilers if you are familiar with King’s work at all). And while I totally understand how it all relates to women having unique trauma and a critique of “traditional” male and female gender roles bit – and this is a bit of a spoiler – it really, REALLY bothered me that Lila in particular just sort of dismissed her husband’s unique trauma; which if you read the book he’s had a rough life. But she doesn’t even fake lip service to it. What a bitch…

Anyway, I liked this book. It was harrowing and really sad but if you like King, you will like this book. 4 out of 5.

Lenni Reviews: “The Stand: The Complete and Uncut Edition” by Stephen King

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In what appears to be a short term history of poor reading decisions, I started off this year deciding I should catch up on some Stephen King; spurred on by the fact this book is due for a remake. When I was a teenager, I tried to read the expanded edition. I even had a bet going with a camp friend at the time that I could finish the book in 1 week.

I lost that bet but she never cashed in so ah well…

Now, having finished the book and rewatched the tv mini-series that for all its camp, holds a special place in my heart (but Storm of the Century is my favorite); I have to say I can see why the original may have been cut down – likely not very much – since to get the gist of the story, not all those words are necessary. You may have noticed in some of my reviews where I have said that a book could have benefitted from a ruthless editor to cut it down. And although my eyes may have glazed over for some pages, I still enjoyed this book.

I finished this back in February (the 11th if you want to get specific and follow me on Goodreads) and I hesitated for a long time whether or not I should bother to post a review.

Then I started Sleeping Beauties right after that to continue my habit of poor reading decisions. A review of that will be coming.

I am a fan of King but like Gaiman, I’m not going to say every single work is perfect. It’s really, REALLY long; the kind of book an e-reader is made for since it’s cumbersome to read in print form and again, I will freely tell you a flipped through some points to get back to the main thread. I think seeing the show before reading the book was to my detriment because I already knew the major plot points and knew what to skim. However, I have to say some of the changes they made from book to ’90’s show are interesting but I do hope they stick closer to the book in the new one. There’s some great character conflict and development that’s VERY simplified in the show. There is more moral ambiguity in the book. But I gotta say, if I had to WATCH all this stuff, it’d be boring as fuck. It’s easier to read and good fucking luck to the stalwart souls adapting this again. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “A Naked Kiss from a Broken Doll: A Giallo” by Peter Marra

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is rated 18+

*This review is cross-posted to Otakus and Geeks.

In the style of Giallo (Italian crime thrillers), we follow Criselda, a sadistic killer as she rips and tears her way through victim after victim eventually encountering a likeminded woman, Cenci. This book follows them as they sink into a life of blood-soaked, lust-filled tales.

This book reminds me very much of Lucio Fulci movies. Visceral, gory, erotic, highly detailed, and graphic, this book will take you on a ride. The way it’s written, it’s almost as if you are in Criselda’s head, trippy, warped, and a bit confusing at times. And while it doesn’t hold back on the gore, there’s a poetry to it. It sure isn’t for the faint of heart but I enjoyed reading it. 3.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “It” by Stephen King

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“Hey, Lenni? You’ve been kinda quiet with the reviews lately. What’s the deal?”


As I was reading this over 1000 page epic, I was almost tempted to do a read-along like I did with Battle Royale but by the time I thought of doing that, I was WAAAYYY too far into the book to pull that off without seeming fake as hell. I do try to avoid BS in this blog. My gut reactions would seem forced and too knowing as I would have been way ahead by the time I wrote up a review.

And who wants spoilers anyway!

What can I say about King? I’ve been reading his books since middle school (I was about 14-15 when I finally outgrew R. L. Stine and Christopher Pike) and Ma was always cool with me reading whatever I thought I could handle (and I wasn’t shy about passing up something I felt I couldn’t handle at that age). I’ve been a fan for over 20 years, I’m still working through his EXTENSIVE biography and he is a man I greatly respect as a person and as a writer. As a comparative novice (who am I even kidding with that statement…) it hardly seems as if I’m in a place to remark on anything he writes. This author is on a short list of people who I would read the phone book if they wrote it simply because they are THAT awesome.

That being said? I have some gripes.

  • Ben is fat. I get it. We don’t need to know every time his stomach, ass, chins or whatever bubble over everything. I have enough body issues and I was a fat teen (and fat adult). I don’t need reminders of how shitty my ass would look on a bicycle seat.
  • I haven’t seen Django Unchained or Hateful Eight and I understand the time period but jeepers, the flagrant use of the N-Word. Context, yes. I totally get it. But having been the target of that word, it’s rage inducing; which takes me out of the narrative until I calm down. It’s so heavy with meaning and emotion it takes me out of the story for a minute before I dive back in, which brings me to:
  • I want to kick the shit out of these bullies and I hate them. On second thought, if the writing is strong enough to elicit an emotional response, I withdraw that criticism.

Note: Anyone want me to do a read-along of any other books? I’d gladly do another King book of you guys are game.

In the meantime, I have so… SO many review copies I owe that are WAAAYY overdue. And for that, I can only apologize and overtly blame Stephen King. Tell him to write shittier books. That way I can blast through them faster and write long, funny, rage-filled reviews for you guys.

Or tell him to write even longer books so I shut up for a few weeks. Either way, I’ll be moving on a faster clip from now on.

Maybe I’ll talk about the movie in a post too.

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I know! I know!

I have been terrible about updating but I have been so disgustingly busy. I will be updating on a normal-ish basis this month. ^_^

Winter Boot is done and ready for posting. Book three is coming along at a pace I did NOT expect. 0.0 The words are flying our of the pen. It’s amazing. I am postulating a new story for Fiction Friday (something I’ve already started… No new projects) and slowly but surely my project list is whittling down.

I dunno if you’ve been following my Twitter or Shelfari accounts but I have also been reading like all get out. I seem to be on a horror kick lately, which will have to stop soon because it’s fucking depressing. But I’ll be twice damned if the books aren’t amazing.

I have also posted another book review. Read. Enjoy. Comment. 🙂