Monday, March 25, 2013

Live Specimens - By Kelli Owen - Great Drive-In horror

4 of 5 Stars

To say I'm a fan of Kelli Owen would be an understatement.  To say I'm a stalker, might go a bit to far.  Who has time for stalking?

I first met Kelli either at Horrorfind Weekend, a couple of years ago, or at Horror Saturday at the York Emporium.  Either way, I found her to be charming, small of stature, (but big of heart) and somewhat unassuming.

In the last couple of years I've caught up with her writing and it's all been good stuff.  At last Summer's Horrible Saturday at the York Emporium, Kelli read a snippet of her current work in progress and I was suitably grossed out.  What she read for us was pretty much the opening sequence for her current novel, Live Specimens.

Juliet has finally left her abusive husband, Bill, taking her little girl, Mandy, with her, from Pennsylvania to her parent's place in Michigan.  They're almost there when Mandy see a lost puppy by the side of the road.   Given the weather, 43 degrees and a big Snow Storm on the way, and much to Mandy's delight, Juliet does a good deed, wrapping the puppy in a blanket and placing it in the backseat with her daughter.  What a heart-warming story.  Wrong!

The opening chapter packs in more raw action and intense drama than many horror stories do from cover to cover and that is just the beginning.  Kelli went all out in this story.  It's literally a cornucopia of gruesomeness.  As in real life, no one is safe.

I don't want to get into a lot of details on the story, because I'd hate to spoil the fun.  It reminds me of the kind of horror movies that used to play at the Drive-Ins I used to frequent back the the '60s of my youth.  Or maybe a really good SyFy Saturday night movie.

Live Specimens, is entertaining start to finish.  Another work that is not a literary masterpiece, but is certainly a good read for the horror enthusiast.  I'd even go as far as to say it was more fun than a basket of puppies ;-)

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