Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


"My Hallowe'en costume this year is a  goat," he said satyrically.

(Hat tip to my evil brother, Ken)

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Here's an early Betty Boop. She's either in a scary old house or she be trippin', bro.

Then, a trip to the drive-in.  (Remember those?)  It's a double feature with scream queen Barbara Steele, Nightmare Castle (1965) and The Ghost (1963).  (There's a Mighty Mouse cartoon, too.  Woot!)

Have a shivering good Halloween!  And be sure to have some good candy left when I come knocking at your door!

Monday, October 28, 2013


The teeniest, tiniest INCOMING ever...
  • Mark Billingham, Scaredy Cat.  A Tom Thorne mystery.
  • Hans Holzer, True Ghost Stories.  Thirty-eight "case histories" from the ghost-hunter's files.  Oh yeah, it's bushwah.
  • Donna Leon, Drawing Conclusions.  A Commissario Guido Brunetti mystery.

Sunday, October 27, 2013


Flashpoint by Ed Gorman (2013)

Political consultant Dev Conrad's fourth outing has him working for Robert Logan, a liberal senator up for reelection and an old friend.  As often happens, scandal and murder interfere with his client's chances for reelection.

Logan, long perceived as a happily married man, has at least one affair in his past and -- possibly -- one in his present.  Beautiful Tracy Cabot has been showing up at Logan's appearance a bit too often, has been seen talking alone with the Senator a bit too often.  Logan, one of the good and caring politicians, also has the sense of privilege that seems to come with high political office.  He appears to be responding to Tracy's advances.  But Tracy is a plant sent by the opposition to put Logan in a compromising position, hopefully in a photographed position.  Seems Tracy has a history of seducing liberal politicians and sinking their elections.

When Logan calls him and insists he drive out to Logan's vacation cabin immediately, refusing to say why, Conrad knows that something is very wrong.  The very wrong something is a bludgeoned -- and dead -- Tracy on the cabin floor.  Logan insists that he is innocent.  Even though he knows that his client is holding something back, Conrad believes him.  The police and the media (especially the opposition media) don't.

Flashpoint is set in a political world that Gorman knows well, a high-stakes world of compromise, deals, and corruption, and a world where sometimes good things happen.  The author has always amazed me with his empathetic abilities; few authors -- in any genre -- can give depth to characters as easily and concisely as Gorman.

Also in the book you'll find some political dirt, a character named "Leo Guild," a nod the original Invasion of the Body Snatchers film, and mention of General Smedley Butler, whose military aide and one-time co-author would later become one of the great pulp writers, Arthur K. Burks (something, alas, not mentioned by Gorman).

Flashpoint is a solid character-driven political mystery.  This one should get the popular vote because it's a winner.


George Beverley Shea

Saturday, October 26, 2013


Erin Roof is eleven years old and in the sixth grade.  Erin likes reading, every type of animal, playing the flute, and soccer.  This summer she built her own boat and got her Captain's license.  She has a great giggle.

                                                RISEN FROM THE GRAVE
                                              by Erin Roof

It was a dark and stormy night.  (I know, how original, right?)
     I'm Rosie.  I'm 11 years old.  Last Halloween, I was going trick-or-treating with my dad and little brother.  That was the night my life turned upside-down.

                                                Duh duh duuuuuuhhhhh...

     "Come on, Dad, come on, let's go!" I said impatiently.  I was pacing in front of the door.  "Are you ready yet?"
     "Calm down," my dad said. He told me that a lot.  He was very serious, with short brown hair and green eyes.  He was dressed as Superman for Halloween this year.  He has this theme where he's a new superhero every year.  Last year, he was Batman.  The year before that, he was the Incredible Hulk.  You get the idea.
     Anyway, Dad was helping my little brother, George, get into his dinosaur costume.  George loves dinos, so it's no surprise when he shouts, "I want to be a dinosaur!  Roar!" every single year.  He's been a dinosaur for all 6 years of his life. We just paint the costume different colors.  This year it was red.  George was trying not to let his bangs stick out of his dino hat, but he was having no luck.
     I was a tree this year.  I love nature, so every year I'm something from the great outdoors.  Last year, I was a rock.  I like this costume better.
     Finally, FINALLY, dad finished George's costume.  "Ok, ok, come on," he said.  "Are you sure you still want to go out?  It's raining pretty hard."
     'yes, Dad, we have  to, it's Halloween, COME ON!" I exclaimed.  I pushed him out the door and took George's hand.  The we walked into the night.

A lot of houses didn't have lights on.  I didn't care.  I just went farther than usual to get candy.  We didn't see any other trick-or-treaters, which was understandable, since it was storming badly.
     "Rosie, are we done yet?  George is getting tired," Dad said.  He was carrying George now, and they were both panting heavily.
     "Just one more street, Dad.  Please?"  I asked.  "Then we'll go right back."
     "Do you even know where we are?" Dad asked.
     "Of course," I replied.
     We turned up the next street.  There was only one light on, at the very end of the road.  We hurried to the house.
     It was a huge, old, Victorian-style house.  It was ancient too, with peeling paint and shattered windows.  But the light was on.  I knocked on the door.
     We heard footsteps coming towards the door.  I held my breath, wondering about the people who lived here.  Were they as ancient as the house?
     The door opened, and an old woman emerged.  She had knotted gray hair, as if it hadn't been brushed in a year.  her hands were wrinkled, her fingers long and thin.  When she opened her mouth, there were exactly two moldy yellow teeth.
     "Why, hello there!" the woman said.  "How nice to see you!  You're the first trick-or-treaters all night!  Why don't you come in for a while?"
     I didn't have the courage to say yes.  Or no.  Instead, I screamed and ran, my dad and brother fleeing after me.

We stopped running when we were hopelessly lost.
     "Dad, who was that?  Do you know her?" I questioned.
     "No idea...don't have...a clue," my dad panted.
     "Do you know how to get home?"
     " idea."
     Our candy was getting soaked, so George and I left it on the side of the road.  It was really storming now, with thunder and lightning.  I knew we had to get home fast.
     But then, something caught my eye.
     "Dad, look, the graveyard!  Remember, where Grandpa Bartholomew was buried?  Don't they always have people guarding it?  They can help us get home!"
     "Are you sure?" Dad asked.  He was breathing normally now.
     "Yes, come on!  We have to get home!" I exclaimed.  I dragged my family into yet another bad plan.

The cemetery was just a normal graveyard, with the occasional tree or bush, and lots of graves.  Grandpa Bartholomew's grave was a big stone that said, "Bartholomew Smith, June 1908-June 2009."  He lived exactly 101 years, which I thought was impressive.
     "Here we are!" I said.  "Now where are the guards?"
     "Maybe it's too wet," George said.  Helpful, right?
     Suddenly a big clap of thunder shook the ground.  Lightning shot out of the sky and struck Grandpa's grave.  The stone began to tremble, harder and harder, until something stepped out of the grave.
     The figure was see-through, pale, and the air around it was freezing cold.  When it turned around, I gasped in shock.  I knew that face.  It was...
     "Grandpa Bartholomew?!?!" I exclaimed.  I was scared out of my mind.  But I was frozen in shock.
     "Hello, Rosie.  You've grown," my grandpa said.  His voice was like nails on a chalkboard.  "And George.  How cute."
     "Umm..." I was trying to get my thoughts straight.  "Aren't you like, dead or something?"
     'Yes.  Thank you for noticing.  But since lightning struck my grave, I was awakened.  Now I am a ghost.  And I will be, until someone figures out how to put me back!  Mwaa-ha-ha-ha-ha!"
     That laugh got me.  I unfroze myself and screamed, "Run!"
     But poor George wasn't fast enough.  When his little legs started working, Grandpa lunged forward and caught my brother by the leg.  As soon as Grandpa's ghostly fingers touched him, George disappeared!
     "Grandpa!  What did you do?  Where did he go?" I shrieked.
     "Little Dino man is a ghost now!  He knows how it feels!"
     I heard George scream.  Then I heard his footsteps running away in fright.
     "Rosie.  Run. NOW," my dad commanded.  We both sprinted down the street, following my invisible brother.

That night, I lay down on my bed in defeat.
     We'd searched for George for hours.  But no luck.  He was invisible.  Finding him would be nearly impossible.
     I never thought I'd get to sleep.  But I closed my eyes and drifted off.

The next thing I knew, I was being shaken awake by Dad.  "Come on.  Got to go to school."
     I was immediately awake.  "Umm... in case you haven't noticed, George is now an invisible ghost, and is currently running around town, screaming his head off.  And you want me to go to school?"
     Dad nodded cheerfully.  "Yup.  Pretty much."  I realized he was trying to stay positive.
     "Fine," I grumbled.  I dragged myself out of bed.
     I got ready for school.  I walked to my bus stop.  My friends came too, but I ignored them.  I was looking for my brother.
     The bus came, I got on, we went to school, yadda yadda yadda.  It all came in a blur.  But when I was in math, staring blankly at my test, I heard a whisper.  "Rosie!"
     I looked around.  Who was whispering my name? "Rosie!"
     Suddenly I recognized the voice.  George!
     "Um, Mr. Eraser?"  I'm not kidding, that was his name.  "I have to puke, so..."
     "Go, go!" Mr. Eraser commanded.
     I got up and ran out of the room.  I hear footsteps behind me.  "George!  Where have you been?"
     "Well, I found my way to the school and slept over here.  The cafeteria has really good food."
     "George!" I scolded.  "Wait, where are you?"
     "Who cares where I am?" George cried.  "Am I ever going to be normal again?  I'm still in my dinosaur costume because I can't get it off!"
     "Come here," I said, and felt around until I located him.  I started taking off his costume.  I told him about how long we had searched for him the night before.
     "You really did that for me?" he sniffled.
     "Yup.  Come on, let's go home."

I played with Invisible George for the rest of the day.  We played board games, card games, word games, everything.
     When Dad got home, I told him about what happened today.  He didn't seem mad that I had skipped school.  He just cared about George.
     Suddenly, there was a flash of blinding light. When it dimmed, I could see something...someone standing there.  It was Grandpa Bartholomew.
     "Here I am again!" he cackled.  "Are you ready to become a ghost like Georgie?"
     He lunged for me.  Before I could cry out, my brother leaped in front of me.  Grandpa grabbed George again, and George was visible, back to normal.  I could see him!
     George ran.  I fled after him.  I heard Dad coming too.  We ran out the door and into the yard.  We looked for Grandpa, but couldn't find him.
     "We need a plan," I gasped, out of breath.
     "We can't live like this," Dad agreed.  "But George, you're back!"
     We all hugged George in a giant group hug.
     "Wait!  I have an idea!" I exclaimed.  "Grandpa's grave was struck by lightning and he came back as a ghost.  So... if he gets struck again, he might go away!"
     "Please, anything," Dad said.  "He's been haunting me all day."
     "All we need are thunderstorms," I said.  We looked up in the sky.  Dark gray clouds were rolling in.
     "Tonight.  At the graveyard.  He'll be there.  I know it."

Waiting was torture.  A minute felt like an hour.  An hour felt like a day.  When it was time to go, it seemed like a year.
     We ran to the grave around 6:00 pm.  It was AGES before there was another flash of lightning.  Grandpa Bartholomew appeared in front of us.
     "Ha ha!" he laughed.  "Here I am again!  You're so stupid, coming outside in a thunderstorm."
     Thunder crackled.  Lightning flashed and shot out of the sky onto Grandpa.  His mouth opened in confusion.  Then he dissolved into sparks.
     I let out my breath.  I didn't even realize I'd been holding it.
     "Rosie," Dad said, "you saved us!  His ghost will never bother us again!"
     Just as he was saying that, lightning struck the grave, and it started trembling, harder and harder.
                                       Duh duh duuuuuuhhh...                                 

Friday, October 25, 2013


Harlan Ellison's Movie by Harlan Ellison (1990)

In 1970, Harlan Ellison was still the enfant terrible of science fiction, as well as one of the most respected writers in Hollywood.  Ellison was approached by movie producer Marvin Schartz who asked him to write a film script of the movie he really wanted to write -- with no restrictions, no guidance other than to include a scene that Ellison had wanted in another film but that had been cut.  So Ellison wrote the film and because it was such a personal project he titled it Harlan Ellison's Movie and Schwartz brought it to 20th Century-Fox which refused it.  (Ellison said that one unnamed executive threw the script at Schwartz's head.)  Time of Sixties counter-culture films had evidently passed.

But Ellison remained proud of the script.  In 1973 he published in ten parts in a newspaper column.  It was finally published in book form as part of a two-volume limited set (with Harlan Ellison's Hornbook) in 1990, and was the published in one volume with Hornbook in 1997 as Edgeworks.3.  It's also now available as an e-Book.

The hero (antihero?) of the script is Chris Stopa who inherits the Stopa Bank when his father dies, which gives him access to almost unlimited funds.  He uses the money to fund projects which he deems worthwhile, projects that other lending institutions would reject out of hand.  He buys a chemical company to stop it from producing napalm.  He gathers some of the brightest minds in a variety of fields and backs each in business ventures that go against the establishment.  He spends a fortune buying a nightly air space from NBC to produce a news show that is about the news, a show that does not prostitute itself to special images, a show designed with the well-being of the average citizen in mind.  He's flying high on success.  The things start to fall apart.  His investments start doing the absolute opposite of what he had envisioned.  He meets the Cabal (think John Brunner's short story "The Totally Rich") and finds he does not have the power he thought.

Surrealistic, interspersed with dream sequences, film and newsreel clips, farcical scenes, and a few cameo interruptions by Ellison itself, this is a movie script of its time, firmly rooted in the Sixties and (I fear) pitifully dated now.  Still, the book is an interesting read.  At one point, Judge Roy Bean sentences "Lester del Fey" to "six weeks in solitary confinement reading Jacqueline Susann novel.  Soon after, Ellison provides cameo appearances of Raymond Burr as Perry Mason, E. G. Marshall and Robert Reed as The Defenders, James Whitmore as Mr. Jones, Edmond O'Brien as Sam Benedict, Carl Betz and Stephen Young as Judd and Ben, and Burl Ives, Joe Campanella, and James Farintino as The Lawyers.  Despite its flaws, Harlan Ellison's Movie displays the provocative and outrageous talent and the witty wordplay the author is known for.

This is one that is best read as a relic of the past.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


John Creasey was not the most prolific writer the world has ever seen, but he was up there.  He published his first book in 1932 when he was 23 or 24 years old.  He died forty years later, having written about 560 books -- an average of 14 books a year.  Although best known for his mysteries, he was adept in almost every field.

  • As "Tex Riley" he wrote 14 westerns novels, from Two-Gun Girl (1938) to Lynch Hollow (1949).
  • As "William K. Reilly" he wrote another 13 western, from Range War (1939) to Range Vengeance (1953).
  • As "Ken Ranger" he chalked up another two westerns, One-Shot Marriott (1938) and Roaring Guns (1939).
  • As "Margaret Cooke" he wrote 14 romances, from For Love's Sake (1934) to Love's Journey (1940).
  • As "Henry St. John Cooper" he wrote six more romances, from Chains of Love (1937) to The Lost Lover (1940).
  • As "Elise Fecamps" he wrote three more romances, from Love of Hate (1936) to Love's Triumph (1937).
  • As "Patrick Gill" he wrote seven youth sports novels. from The Fighting Footballers (1937) to The Secret Super-Charger (1940).
  • Under his own name he wrote 43 children's adventure books, from The Man Who Died Laughing (1935) to The Missing Monoplane (1947), including at least one book featuring Dixon Hawke, the popular Scottish detective who has appeared in more than 5500 adventures since 1912.
  • As "James Marsden" he also wrote Ned Cartwright -- Middleweight Champion (1935), another children's book.
  • Under his own name, He wrote 29 books about Department Z, a British counter-intelligence agency, from Redhead (1933) to The Black Spiders (1957).
  • Not to be outdone, he created Dr. Stanislaus Alexander Palfrey, who formed the secret group Z5, an underground organization  dedicated to helping the allies; Palfrey and Z5 later took on mad scientists and others bent on conquering and/or destroying England (and/or the world) through apocalyptic means.  Creasey wrote 35 Palfry novels from Traitor's Doom (1942) to The Thunder-Maker (1976).
  • Again, under his own name he contributed five books to the long-running Sexton Blake series, from The Case of the Murdered Financier (1937) to Private Carter's Crime (1943).
  • In 1938 Creasey introduced the Hon. Richard Rollison, sometimes known as gentleman adventurer "The Toff," in Introducing the Toff.  Rollison was featured in 68 novels, two story collections, and at least one play.  He made his curtain call in The Toff and the Dead Man's Finger (1978)
  • Inspector (later Superintendent) Roger "Handsome" West first appeared in Inspoector West Takes Charge (1942) and last appeared in A Sharp Rise in Crime (1978) -- a total of 68 books.
  • As "M. E. Cooke" he wrote twenty crime novels, from Fire of Death (1934) to The Verrall Street Affair (1940)
  • As "Michael Halliday" he wrote ten books about Dr. Emmanuel Cellini, from Cunning as a Fox (1965) to The Man Who Was Not Himself (1976).  The Cellini novels were published in the United States under the pen name "Kyle Hunt."  As "Halliday" he published an additional 44 mysteries, from Four Find Adventure (1937) to This Man Did I Kill? (1974) -- including four novels featuring Martin and Richard Fanes, from Take a Body (1951) to Murder on the Run (1953).
  • As "Peter Manton" he wrote 14 mysteries, from Murder Manor (1937) to The Charity Killers (1954)
  • As "Anthony Morton" he wrote 49 mysteries about John Mannering, "The Baron," from Meet the Baron (1937) to Love for the Baron (1979).  For some confusing reason, the first eight books in the series changed Mannering's nickname from "The Baron" to "The Blue Mask."  Go figure.
  • Patrick Dawlish and his Crime Haters organization appeared in 51 novels as by "Gordon Ashe," from Death on Demand (1939) to A Plague of Demons (1976).  "Ashe" also produced two stand-alone mysteries, The Man Who Stayed Alive (1955) and No Need to Die (1956).
  • As "Norman Deane" Creasey wrote six mysteries about Bruce Murdoch -- from Secret Errand (1939) to Where Is the Withered Man? (1942) -- and three novels about "The Liberator," from Return to Adventure (1943) to Come Home to Crime (1945), as well as  twelve stand-alone mysteries, from Play for Murder(1946) to Incense of Death (1954).
  • As "Jeremy York" he wrote 25 standalone mysteries, from By Persons Unknown (1941) to To Kill or Die (1960).  Three of those mysteries were revised for U.S. publication  to feature Superintendent Folly, from Find the Body (1967, U.S.) to Close the Door on Murder (1973, U.S.).
  • As "J.J. Marric" he wrote what consider his best and most sustained series:  21 books and at least one play about Commander George Gideon, from Gideon's Day (1955) to Gideon's Drive (1976).
  • AS "Robert Caine Frazer" he wrote six books about Hollywood detective Mark Kirby, from Mark Kirby Solves a Murder (1959) to Mark Kirby Takes a Risk (1962)
  • As "Kyle Hunt" he wrote four stand-alone mysteries, from Kill Once, Kill Twice (1956) to To Kill A Killer (1960)
  • Creasey also wrote one book as "Brian Hope" (Four Motives for Murder, 1938), one book with Ian Bowen under the joint pseudonym "Chas Hogarth" (Murder on Largo Island, 1944), one book as "Colin Hughes" (Triple Murder, 1940), one non-fiction book as "Credo" (Man in Danger, 1950), one book as "Abel Mann (Danger Woman, 1966), one book ghost-written as "Jimmy Wilde" (Fighting Was My Business, 1938),  three books as "Richard Martin" (from Keys to Crime, 1947, to Adrian and Jonathan, 1954), two books as "Rodney Mattheson" (The Dark Shadow, n.d. [1935-6], and The House of Ferrars, n.d. [1936-7]).  Creasey is also know to have used the pseudonyms "Henry St. John" and "Martin Richard," and possibly others.
  • Creasey also published six non-series novels under his own name, from his first book, Seven Times Seven (1932) to the last book published under his name, The Whirlwind (1979); among these six was Masters of Bow Street (1972), a sprawling historical novel about the founding of Scotland Yard.
  • Creasey also wrote another eleven non-fiction books about history, travel, war, and politics, edited seven mystery anthology and one non-fiction book of war history, wrote at least two more plays, revised an addition 58 mysteries beyond the three Superintendent Folly books mentioned above,  took over Creasey's Mystery Magazine (for which he had selected reprints) with issue #14 in 1957, renamed it John Creasey's Mystery Magazine and edited it for another 76 issues, founded Britain's Crime Writer's Association (CWA), won an Edgar, and was awarded an MBE for services during World War II.
  • Television series have been made based on the Gideon novels and on the Baron novels.  A radio series was based on the Inspector West novels.  John Ford made a movie based on Gideon, two movies were made about the Toff, and one movie was made based on a "Michael Halliday" novel.
  • Following Creasey's death, the writer William Vivian Butler continued the Gideon series for another five novels, from Gideon's Force (1978) to Gideon's Fear (1980).
Phew!  I've read about four dozen books by Creasey and have hardly made a dent in his works.  How about you?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


(Halloween's coming in eight days.  Just sayin')

My girlfriend went to a Halloween party dressed as a spoon and no one there moved.  They couldn't stir without her.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


With Halloween coming up in nine days, it's time to get your chill on.  From the Radio Theatre Group, here's Edgar Allan Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart," narrated by Derek Banner.

(Please note that the file is 70 minutes long,  but the story lasts only 19 minutes.  If you insist on listening to the complete file, be sure to have something handy to occupy the final 50 minutes of dead time.)

Monday, October 21, 2013


  • "James Axler," Death Hunt, Hellbenders, No Man's Land, and Separation.  All part of the seemingly endless post-apocalyptic men's action-adventure series Deathlands, scribed under a house name.  Also, from its companion series The Outlanders, Book 1 of the Heart of the World sequence, Talon and Fang.
  • Charles Ardai, editor, Great Tales of Madness & the Macabre.  Mystery/fantasy anthology with 29 stories, many from EQMM, AHMM, and IASFM.
  • John Ball, Phase Three Alert.  World War II thriller.
  • Neal Barrett, Jr., Aldair, Across the Misty Sea.  SF.
  • Richard Lee Byers, Dissolution.  Gaming (Forgotten Realms) tie-in novel, Book I of R. A. Salvatore's War of the Spider Queen series.
  • "Jack Campbell" (John Hemry), The Lost Fleet:  Courageous.  SF.
  • Nancy A. Collins, Darkest Heart.  Horror, a Sonja Blue novel.  The author explains that Part One of the book appeared earlier as a chapbook Cold Turkey, later rewritten as Chapter 3 of her novel Paint It Black.
  • Glen Cook, The Garrett Files.  Omnibus containing the first three novels in the fantasy series about Garrett, P. I.:  Sweet Silver Blues, Bitter Gold Hearts, and Cold Copper Tears.
  • Joseph Curtin, Daughters of the Moon.  Vampire novel.
  • Ellen Datlow, editor, Lovecraft Unbound.  Horror anthology with 20 stories.
  • Jeffery Deaver, The Cold Moon.  A Lincoln Rhyme mystery.
  • Gardner Dozois, editor, The Year's Best Science Fiction:  Twenty-First Annual Collection (29 stories from 2003), The Year's Best Science Fiction Stories:  Twenty-Second Annual Collection (28 stories from 2004), and The Year's Best Science Fiction:  Twenty-Fourth Annual Collection (28 stories from 2006).
  • P. N. Elrod, The Vampire Files, Volume One. Omnibus of the first three Jack Fleming, Vampire P.I. novels:  Bloodlust, Lifeblood, and Bloodcircle.
  • Matt Forbeck, The Road to Death.  Gaming (Eberron) tie-in novel, Book 2 of The Lost Mark
  • Esther Friesner, editor, Chicks 'n Chained Males.  Third in the humorous anthology series about warrior women.  Eighteen stories,
  • Simon R. Green, Everybody Comes to the Nightside.  Omnibus of three John Taylor/Nightside fantasy novels:  Something from the NightsideAgents of Light and Darkness, and Nightingale's Lament.
  • "Rohmer Zane Grey," Zane Grey's Laramie Nelson:  The Lawless Land.  Collection of four western stories from the rebooted 1970s Zane Grey's Western Magazine.  Despite claims in the book, "Rohmer Zane Grey" was a house name used by various authors and is not the son of Zane Grey.
  • Joe Haldeman, The Forever War.  The SF classic.
  • Tom Holland, Lord of the Dead.  Vampire novel.
  • Jemiah Jefferson, Voice of the Blood.  Horror.
  • William W. Johnstone, The First Mountain Man:  Absaroka Ambush/Courage of the Mountain Man and Cunning of the Mountain Man/Power of the Mountain Man.  Two western omnibuses.
  • Brandon Keith, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and the Affair of the Gentle Saboteur. Television tie-in juvenile novel, the first of two by this author from Whitman Publishing.  Keith may be a pseudonym; he also wrote a Green Hornet and an I Spy novel for Whitman.
  • Damon Knight, editor, Orbit 11.  SF anthology with 20 stories,
  • Richard La Plante, Mind Kill.  Suspense.
  • Jeff Lindsay, Dexter Is Delicious.  Crime novel featuring everybody's favorite serial killer.
  • Jane Lindskold, Thirteen Orphans.  Fantasy.
  • Steve Lopez, The Sunday Macaroni Club.  Suspense.
  • Margaret Maron, High Country Fall.  A Deborah Knott mystery.
  • George R. R. Martin & Gardner Dozois, editors, Down These Strange Streets. Urban fantasy anthology with 17 stories.
  • Graham Masterton, A Terrible Beauty.  Horror.
  • "Barbara Michaels" (Barbara Mertz), Ammie, Come Home, Greygallows, House of Many Shadows, Houses of Stone, Patriot's Dream, Search the Shadows, Vanish with the Rose, and The Wizard's Daughter.  Mysteries, often romantic, often tinged with the supernatural.  The author, who passed away recently, also wrote as "Elizabeth Peters."
  • Andre Norton, Beast Master's Planet. SF omnibus of two Hosteen Storm novels:  The Beast Master and Lord of Thunder
  • Naomi Novik, Throne of Jade and Black Powder War.  Books 2 and 3 of the fantasy Temeraire series.  Dragons and Napoleon, oh my!
  • Stewart O'Nan, Last Night at the Lobster.  Novel.
  • Garfield Reeves-Stevens, Nighteyes.  SF.
  • J. W. Rider, Hot Tickets.  P.I. novel, the second featuring Malone, following Jersey Tomatoes.
  • "James Rollins" (Jim Czajkowski) & Rebecca Cantrell, The Blood Gospel.  Thriller, the first book in The Order of the Sanguines series.  This edition also includes a bonus novella.
  • Michael Shea, The Mines of Behemoth.  Fantasy featuring Nifft the Lean.
  • Whitley Strieber, The Last Vampire.  Horror.
  • James Swallow, Faith and Fire.  Gaming (Warhammer 40,000), the first in the Sisters of Battle series.
  • Thomas Burnett Swann, The Weirwoods.  Fantasy. 
  • Cecelia Tan, editor, Erotica Vampirica:  Thirty-One Tales of Supernatural Desire.  Omnibus of four Circlet Press anthologies of erotic horror:  Blood Kiss, Erotica Vampirica, Cherished Blood, and The Beast Within.
  • James M. Thompson, Dark Blood.  Horror.
  • Tamara Thorne, Candle Bay.  Vampire novel.
  • "Peter Tremayne" (Peter Berresford Ellis), Raven of Destiny and Ravenmoon.  Historical fantasies from an author who knows ancient Ireland better than almost anyone else.
  • Harry Turtledove, Jaws of Darkness.  Fantasy.
  • David Weber & Eric Flint, Crown of Slaves.  SF novel in the Honorverse.
  • Robert Weinberg, Stefan Dziemianowicz, & Martin H. Greenberg, editors, Rivals of Dracula. Horror anthology with 19 stories.
  • Robert Wilson, The Vanished Hands.  A Inspector Jefe Javier Falcon mystery.
  • Murray Wolfson & Vincent Buranelli, In the Long Run We Are All Dead.  A macroeconomics murder mystery.

Friday, October 18, 2013


Shanadu edited by Robert E. Briney (1953)

Never underestimate the power of fanboys.  Case in point, Shanadu, a strange little collection of three (four, depending on who's counting) fantasy stories published in 1953 by four young men, eighteen, nineteen, or (in one possible case) twenty years old, through SSR Publications in North Tonawanda, New York.  The introduction states that the book was three-and-a half years in the making, which means that the authors were about fifteen or sixteen when they began plotting the book.

The leader of this group appears to Robert Briney, who edited the book, wrote the interludes, and co-wrote the final, two-part story.  Briney became a well-known fan and contributed to many fanzines, notably taking over the editing and publishing duties for The Rohmer Review, a much-missed magazine. The first story in the book, "Quest of the Veil," was written by Gene DeWeese, who had a solid mid-list career in the SF, gothic (as "Jean DeWeese"), and mystery fields, "The Fire-Born," the second story in the book was penned by "Toby Duane" (W. Paul Ganley); Ganley, of course, is a respected small-press published in the guiding hand behind Weirdbook, another much-missed magazine.  The final story -- the two-parter -- was written by Brian J. McNaughton and "Andrew  Duane."  I'm pretty sure that Brian J. McNaughton is the same Brian McNaughton who wrote a number of effective horror novels and stories from the 1970s onward.  "Andrew Duane,"
was Briney; the extent of his collaboration with McNaughton is not known -- on may have just written the first part, the other the second.  (The book's introduction claims five writers, not four.  I presume that Briney wanted "Andrew Duane" considered as the fifth writer.)

The book itself is perfect-bound, 5 1/2" x 8", with a cardboard cover and a frontispiece by Ralph Rayburn Phillips and a map of Shanadu by Briney.  The preface is in one typeface, the prologue and interludes in another (and more difficult to read) typeface, and the stories appeared to be printed directly from a typewriter with a wonky ribbon.  The stories have little spacing between each line (although there are indents and double spacing used to denote new paragraphs).  The book is not easy to read.

 The influence of the popular fantasy writers of the day -- Merritt, Cabell, Robert E. Howard -- is clearly indicated by the pulpish prose:  In opaline wisps and whorls, in roseate clouds that billowed and faded, in sapphire streamings and pearl white eddies the mists swam at the edge of the stairs.

Shandu is an ancient white city on a plain.  When first founded, its leader sent men out to find a magical piece of cloth known as The Veil.  The true power of The Veil has never been revealed and no person who went on a quest to find it ever returned.  Years pass and an unhappy blacksmith's apprentice finds an old scroll that points in the direction of The Veil.  How The Veil was found and brought to Shanadu is told in the first story.  In the second story The Veil falls into Hank Weston's hands, and the power of the Seven Gods transport him through time and space to Shanadu where a battle is being fought for The Veil.  The final story tells of the destruction of Shanadu at the hands of the warrior Rimon.

Despite all of its faults, this is an interesting book where energy overcomes amateur writing.  Not a book for everyone, surely, but a pleasing look at four fans at the beginning of their careers.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


Depending on what source you go to, movie and television director Jack Arnold (CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE, THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN, HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL!) would have been either 101 or 98 years old yesterday.  Born Jack Arnold Waks in New Haven, Connecticut, Arnold had the questionable distinction of publishing his first (and only) science fiction story A Life in Television in J. Berg Esenwein's forgettable anthology Adventures to Come, a 1937 effort consider to be the first actual science fiction anthology as well as one of the poorest anthologies ever, story-wise.  Twelve years later, Arnold began directing documentary shorts and soon moved on to motion pictures, pausing briefly in 1955 to direct four episode of television's Science Fiction Theatre.  By 1959 television began make up the bulk his work, directing a further 222 episodes (including 26 episodes of Gilligan's Island) and five television movies (including a remake his 1959 theatrical release The Mouse That Roared, which he tried -- unsuccessfully -- to turn into a television series).  His last directorial job was a 1984 episode of The Love Boat.  He died in 1992.  And, thanks to IMDB, we know that he was a Libra.  (Actually, we knew that from the date, but it was kind of IMDB to spell that out for us.)

Anyway, to celebrate his 101st or 98th birthday, here's an episode from Peter Gunn that Arnold directed in 1959, The Ugly Frame, complete with not-1959 ads (sorry).  And, yes, I know the link says 1958, but are you going to believe everything you read?

Monday, October 14, 2013


A frustrating, computer-less week or so -- made better by some interesting books I found along the way.  Not only were my computer and e-mail screwed-up, but many of my records were lost, including my catalog of books I own.  (Grrr.  It'll take a long while to reconstruct that one.)  Most likely I have copies of several of these books (I'm looking at you, David Weber!) and some time in the (far distant?) future, I'll cull the duplicates.
  • Edward Abbey, Abbey's Road and Down the River.  Two non-fiction collections with 19 essays in each.
  • Jeff Abbott, Black Jack Point.  A Whit Moseley mystery.
  • Dan Abnett, Traitor General.  Gaming (Warhammer 40,000) tie-in novel, first in a new sequence (The Lost) in the Gaunt's Ghosts series.
  • "George Bagby" (Aaron Marc Stein), Murder's Little Helper.  An Inspector Schmidt mystery.
  • T. C. Boyle, The Human Fly and Other Stories.  Literary collection of 13 stories.
  • Algis Budrys, editor, L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future, Volume IV.  An early entry into the never-ending series of SF anthologies sponsored under the aegis of not-Scientology and a dead Hubbard.  This talent search has produced some pretty good writers:  included in this volume are Nancy Farmer, Mary A. Turzillo, and R. Garcia y Robertson.  Sixteen stories and seven article, includiong a "trunk" essay/introduction by Hubbard.
  • James Lee Burke, Last Car to Elysian Fields.  A Dave Robicheaux mystery.
  • W. R. Burnett, The Roar of the Crowd.  Non-fiction.  Oponions about baseball.
  • A. S. Byatt, Ragnorak:  The End of Gods.  Fictional retelling of a Norse myth.
  • "Jack Campbell" (John G. Hemry), Beyond the Frontier:  Dreadnaught, Valiant, and Victorious.  SF novels in the popular Lost Fleet series.
  • Bennett Cerf, editor, Reading for Pleasure.  General anthology with 65 stories, articles, and excerpts.
  • "John Christopher" (Samuel Youd), The Lotus Caves.  YA SF.
  • "James Clemens" (Jim Czajkowski), Wit'ch War.  Fantasy, Book Three of The Basnned and the Banished.  The author also writes thrillers as "James Rollins."
  • Harlan Coben, Long Lost.  A Myron Bolitar mystery.
  • John Connolly, Dark Hollow.  Mystery with supernatural overtones; the second book in the Charlie Parker series.
  • Glen Cook, Bitter Gold Hearts and Whispering Nickel Idols.  Fantasies in the Garrett, P.I. series.
  • Matthew Costello, Seaquest DSV:  Fire Below.  Television tie-in novel.
  • Lester del Rey, Early del Rey.  SF collection with 24 stories from 1938 through 1951.
  • Marjorie Dorner, Freeze Frame.  Thriller.
  • Candace Jane Dorsey, A Paradigm of Earth.  SF.
  • Richard M. Dorson, editor, Folktales Told Around the World.  Folklore from forty-four (if I counted rightly) cultures.
  • Stefan Dziemianowicz, Robert Weinberg, and Martin H. Greenberg, editors, 100 Ghastly Little Ghost Stories.  Horror collection with -- you guessed it -- 100 stories.
  • "Rosalind Erskine" (Roger Erskine Longrigg), The Passion Flower Hotel and Passion Flowers in Italy. Humorous and mildly erotic books about five schoolgirls who turn their school gym into a bordello.  The author also wrote spy novels as "Ivor Drummond," mystery novels as "Frank Parrish," and just about everything else as "Laura Black," "Domini Taylor," "Megan Barker," and "Grania Beckford."
  • Paul Gallico, Trial by Terror. Cold War thriller.
  • Heather Graham, Dark Harvest.  Paranormal romantic suspense, second in the Flynn Brothers trilogy.
  • Martin H. Greenberg, editor, Nightmares on Elm Street:  Freddy Kreuger's Seven Sweetest Dreams.  Movie tie-in collection with seven stories.
  • Wendy Haley, White Light.  Suspense.
  • Carolyn Hart, Murder Walks the Plank.  A Death on Demand mystery, me hearties!
  • Nancy Holder, Buffy the Vampire Slayer:  Carnival of Souls.  Television tie-in novel.
  • Trevor Hoyle, Kids.  Horror.
  • Roderic Jeffries, A Fatal Fleece.  An Inspector Alvarez mystery.
  • Richard Jessup, The Deadly Duo.  Mystery.
  • Henry Kane, Death of a Flack.  A Pete Chambers mystery.
  • Mercedes Lackey, Arrows of the Queen.  Fantasy, the first book in the Heralds of Valdemar series, a subset of the main Valdemar series.
  • Laura Lippman, In a Strange City.  A Tess Monaghan mystery.
  • Eric Van Lustbader, Mistress of the Pearl.  Fantasy, Volume Three of the Pearl SagaI have it on good authority that Jason Bourne does not appear in this book.
  • John Lutz, Urge to Kill.  A Frank Quinn mystery from one of the most reliable writers out there.
  • Seon Manley & Gogo Lewis, editors, Masters of the Macabre:  An Anthology of Mystery, Horror and Detection.  Anthology of 17 mostly familiar stories.
  • Julian May, Magnificat.  SF, Book Three in the Galactic Milieu trilogy.
  • John Milne, Dead Birds.  A Jimmy Jenner mystery.
  • Kenneth Oppel, Skybreaker.  YA SF, sequel yo Airborn.
  • Chuck Palahniak, Lullaby.  Literary fantasy.
  • Michalr Pearce, The Night of the Dog.  A Mamur Zapt mystery, set in Cairo during the British Rule.
  • Don Pendleton, Heart to Heart.  An Ashton Ford adventure.  Ford is spy who has some special psychic powers.
  • Leo Perutz, The Master of the Day of Judgment.  Mystery.
  • Chris Pierson, Trail of the Black Wyrm.  Gaming (DragonLance) tie-in novel, Volume Two of the Taladas trilogy.
  • Michael Riley, Conversations with Anne Rice.  Non-fiction/interviews.  This one was published in 1996, so it's pretty dated now, not covering the interesting aspects of Rice's life since then.
  • "J.D. Robb" (Nora Roberts), Visions in Death.  Near-future mystery in the Eve Dallas series.
  • R. A. Salvatore, The Thousand Orcs.  Gaming (Forgotten Realms) tie-in novel, Book 1 in the Hunter's Blade trilogy.
  • Brandon Sanderson, The Hero of Ages.  Fantasy, Book Three in the Mistborn trilogy.
  • Ruth Sawyer, The Way of the Storyteller.  Non-fiction. The art of the storyteller, with eleven folk tales included as examples.
  • "Darren Shan" (Darren O'Shaughnessy), Slawta.  YA horror, Book 3 in the Demonata series.
  • Benjamin M. Schutz, Mary, Mary, Shut the Door and Other Stories.  Mystery collection of all twelve of Schutz's short stories.  Another author gone too soon. 
  • Martin Cruz Smith, Three Stations.  An Arkady Renko mystery.
  • Nancy Springer, Metal Angel.  Fantasy.  Kitty took a look at the cover and said to me, "Angel pornReally?"  Probably not, but time will tell.
  • Darwin Teilhet, The Big Runaround.  Thriller.
  • Brad Thor, Full Black.  A Scott Harvath thriller.
  • David Weber, Ashes of Victory, Echoes of Honor, Field of Dishonor, Flag in Exile, Honor Among Enemies, In Enemy Hands, and The Short Victorious War -- all SF novels in the honor Harrington series.  Also, The Shadow of Saganami (a novel in the Honorverse and the first in the Saganami Island  series), The Armageddon Inheritance (a standalone novel), and Worlds of Weber (a collection of nine stories, some novel and novella length).
  • David Weber, editor, Worlds of Honor #3:  Changer of Worlds.  SF, four stories in the Honorverse, including two by Weber.
  • David Weber & Steve White, Crusade and Insurrection.  SF.
  • Margaret Weis, The Soul Forge.  Gaming (DragonLance) tie-in novel, Volume One in the Raistlin Chronicles.
  • Margaret Weis &Tracy Hickman, Time of the Twins.  Gaming (DragonLance) tie-in novel, Volume 1 in the Dragonlance Legends series.
  • Edmund Wilson, I Thought of Daisy.  Novel.  Ballantine Book Number 20, published with Farrer, Straus & Young.  This paperback was in pristine condition.  Can you blame me for picking it up?
  • Scott F. Woltner, The Hooked X, the Key to the Secret History of North America.  I guess you could call this speculative archeology/geology.  The author has turned this into a cable television program that we recently saw on some basic cable channel (don't know which).  The books mentions a number of sites near my Massachusetts chuldhood stomping grounds -- The Westford Knight, The Westford Boat Stone, The Tyngsboro Map Stone, et cetera, but (as far as I can tell from a brief glimpse) no mention of Mystery Hill in nearby Salem, NH.  Signed.
  • Austin Tappen Wright, Islandia.  The classic doorstop Utopian fantasy
  • Philip Wylie, Tomorrow!  SF.  America under atomic attack --a familiar Wylie theme.
  • Jane Yolen, Wizard's Hall.  YA fantasy.

Saturday, October 12, 2013


The great pulpster who have been 109 years old today!  His Doc Savage novels are continuing to garner new fans eighty years after the first adventure was published.

His formula for writing a salable 6000 word story, the Pulp Paper Master Fiction Plot, still works.  You may want to give it a try:

Friday, October 11, 2013


Mr. Mergenthwirker's Lobblies:  A Fantastic Comedy in Three Acts  by Nelson Bond (1957)

The lobblies came into being in 1937, the same year that Nelson S. Bond began his writing career.  Those amiable, invisible, mischevious, beer-guzzling, color-changing, claivoyant -- and purely fictional --creatures don't really exist, but it's pleasant to think they could be real and actually had a hand in his success.  Lobblies, after all, are more than ready to help anyone who has a pure heart.

Mr. Mergenthwirker's Lobblies was first published as a short story in Scribner's magazine in November, 1937.  It was the basis for a radio series as well as a story series in Argosy.  It gained further legs when Julius Fast included it in his 1944 anthology Out of This World; Fast's collection went through four printings in three years.  In 1946, Bond used the story to helm his first collection, Mr. Mergenthwirker's Lobblies and Other Fantastic Tales.  Earlier, in 1943, Bond began putting his popular creatures in play form -- an unpublished version of the play was copyrighted in 1943; this version was eventually presented on NBC television's Broadway Previews on September 22, 1946, featuring no actors I have ever heard of.  Oh, well.  The final, revised version of the play was published in 1957, the first of several plays by Bond to be published, and the one we are dicussing here.

Len Hawley, a reporter newly promoted to a desk job, is engaged to ice queen Alicia Burton, the daughter of a currect alderman and mayoral hopeful.  Len has been working hard on his future father-in-law's campaign but, even though Burton is now considered a shoo-in for the next day's election (thanks mainly to Len's efforts), the politico is none to happy about his daughter being engaged to a lowly journalist.  Being a typical dim-bulb hero out of a 1940s slapstick comedy, Len does not realize that his fellow reporter Sherry Maguire is secretly in love with him. Enter Henry Mergenthwirker.

Megenthwirker is a quiet, inoffensive man who wants to report a murder, one that will happen later that day.  He claims that his friends Henry and Japheth, lobblies who can see the future but can themselves only be seen by Mergenthwirker, told him in great detail about the murder.  Len kicks the man out of his office only to later find that the murder had occurred exactly as Mergenthwirker had said.  What Mergenthwirker had not mentioned was that the victim was his soon-to-be father-in-law's attractive secretary.

Act II finds Len drowning his sorrows at a nearby bar.  Mergenthwirker and his (we assume 'cuz we can't see 'em) lobblies enter.  This is where we discover how much lobblies like beer and where Len watches in amazement as glasses are drained of beer while no one is there to drink them.  There's also some amusing interplay between the lobblies and a drunk at a slot  machine.  Mergenthwirker tells Len that he and the lobblies are at the bar to watch a bank robbery that will soon take place across the street.  Len has now been convinced that the lobblies are real and that the robbery will take place.  He calls his paper and gets reporters and a photographer to come to the bar and cover the soon-to-break story.  Len's boss soon appears wondering why most of his newspaper's resources are hanging out at a neighborhood bar.  Minutes later the robbery happens and Len's crew are on top of the story.  Len is hailed as a reporting genius and the story is readied to be called in just in time to make the that day's edition.  But...

Just then word comes through that Alicia's father has just been arrested for his secretary's murder.   The robbery story is forgotten as Len's boss prepares major stories about the arrest, stories which will also sink Alderman Burton's chances in the next day's election.

Will Len save his future father-in-law and solve the murder?  Will he finally wise up and realize the Sherry is the one for him?  Will the lobblies ever sober up?  *****SPOILER ALERT***** Yes, to all three questions.  *****END OF SPOILER ALERT*****

This is a charming, and very dated, romantic comedy.  Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn were starring in the movie in my mind as I read the play.   Amusing and frothy, Mr. Mergenthwirker's Lobblies may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it gave me a few pleasant hours.

Monday, October 7, 2013


  • Marl Billingham, Scaredy Cat.  A Detective Inspector Tom Thorne mystery.
  • Rhys Bowen, Naughty in Nice.  A Royal Spyness mystery.
  • Richard Deming, American Spies.  Juvenile non-fiction.  Ten stories of real-life spies from the 1600s to World War II from Whitman Publishing, who put out a passle of these books when I was a kid.
  • William Gibson, All Tomorrow's Parties.  SF.
  • William W. Johnstone & "J. A. Johnstone," MacCallister:  The Eagles Legacy:  Dry Gulch Ambush. Western.
  • Graham Joyce, The Silent Land.  Fantasy.
  • Mercedes Lackey, Tanith Lee, & C. E. Murphy, Winter Moon.  Collection of three fantasy stories.
  • Captain Gordon D. Sherriffs, USAR (retired) [well, that's what it said on the title page], They Met Danger.  More juvenile non-fiction from Whitman Publishing, this time giving us eight accounts of persons who were awarded the Medal of Honor.  Sherriffs, of course, is much better known for his westerns.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


A blonde once told me she was said because she couldn't play fetch with her dog.  "Why not?" I foolishly asked.  "Because he can't throw," she answered.


What did the banjo player  get on his IQ test?  Drool.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


It's October 1st and that means that Halloween is just around the corner.  Actually, it's more toward the end of the block, but whatever.  It's time to celebrate horror...and what can be more horrible than watching Frankie Avalon trying to act!  I thought so.

Included here is the theatrical preview of the flick (also known as Horror House), giving you a taste of cheesiness to come.  There are no questions about this preview.  Literally, no questions.  flashing over the preview are such words as "Could you be alone in the dark," and "Are you afraid of the dark," and "Are your nerves stretched to the breaking point by The Haunted House of Horror."  No question marks.  Evidently the budget could not afford question marks.

Credited with writing and directing the film is 24-year-old Michael Armstrong, but the film was taken from his control early on.  The movie was co-produced by AIP, which still had one movie owed them by contract with Boris Karloff.  AIP London executive insisted that Armstrong bring to Karloff into the movie, Armstrong refused, hissy-fits ensued.  When the dust was cleared, Armstrong was out, Harwood reimagined the film and hired Gerry Levy to take over the reins, and Karloff still did not appear in the film.  Sex and violence were toned down, a bajillion scenes outside the haunted house were added. characters were tweaked, the killer's motivation was changed, Dennis Price's role as the police inspector (he originally had only one scene) was pumped up, George Sewell's character was added, and parts of the films became meaningless, inconsistent, any anything but seamless.

But all was not lost...

**************************SPOILER ALERT***************************

Ankiefray Valonay endsay upay icedslay anday icedday -- anday otnay ybay Annetteay.

*************************END OF SPOILER ALERT*********************

Besides Frankie Avalon, the film stars late Sixties go-go boots, miniskirts, and fashions, as well as boring party scenes.  The female lead  is played by the very beautiful Jill Haworth who was discovered by Otto Preminger and cast by him as Sal Mineo's girlfriend in Exodus.  (Haworth was romantically linked by gossips with Mineo for several years after, most likely much in the same way Rock Hudson was linked with various women.)  The very talented Haworth also originated the role of Sally Bowles in Cabaret on Broadway.  She passed away several years ago following a long career doing voice-overs.

Dennis Price, whose role as the police inspector was greatly expanded, was a matinee star in the Forties, who became a successful character actor later in his career.  He played Jeeves in the 1965-67 British television series The World of Wodehouse.  Julian Barnes, *********MORE SPOILERS********* owhay  aysplay ethay illerkay **********END OF SPOILER ALERT********* also had a long career after this, his second film.  George Sewall, plopped into the film at the last minute by Haworth and Levy, may best be remembered as George Smiley's handler Mendel in the original miniseries of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.

So, if you cannot be alone in the dark and if you are afraid of the dark and if your nerves would be stretched to the breaking point by The Haunted Hose of Horror, don't bother to click on the link!