Tag Archives: Nate Southard

Splatterpunk 4

I received the fourth issue of Splatterpunk last week, and wasted no time digging into it. I am a big fan of Jack Bantry’s nostalga-dripping DIY zine. He was also kind enough to throw me a copy of the larger size debut issue so I now have a complete collection.

But enough of that, let’s get our gloves on and dissect this bad boy, shall we?

Opening with a short editorial by Bantry himself, which gives way to a wonderfully witty essay by Jeff Burk on why he loves extreme horror, we then have our first story of the issue, “I’m On My,” by Shane McKenzie. This tale of accidents and bad choices made with the best intentions is raw and throbbing, like a fresh wound. We follow that story’s blood trail to a great interview with both McKenzie and John Skipp, which is both insightful and fun.

Next we have “A Bit of Christmas Mayhem” by the always wonderful Jeff Strand. This story made me laugh out loud. It is so darkly insane and funny as we follow the main character, Mr. Chronic Bad Luck, who finds himself in the most ridiculous of Christmas Eve situations.

We are then given a glimpse into the truly twisted and hardcore life of “Wicking,” a violent and twisted tale by editor Jack Bantry and Robert Essig.

We get a chance to breathe when we pull into the reviews column, where Bantry and Gambino Iglesias give us the scoop on some newish books we should check out. And rounding out the fiction is a story by J.F. Gonzalez, “Ricochet,” which is a frightening glimpse into the perils of Internet technology and secrets. After which we get a short interview with Mr. Gonzalez.

Overall, Splatterpunk 4 is another great issue of over-the-top horror stories presented and paired with great artwork. Splatterpunk is a consistent little zine and one that packs as much heart into each issue as some larger presses manage to do in a year’s time. If you like your horror fresh and bleeding and harder than heroin, give Splatterpunk a chance. You won’t be disappointed.

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Down

The Frequency Brothers is a rock band on the cusp of great success. After a sold-out concert in Texas, they board their small private plane to go to a video shoot in New York. But their plane goes down in a forest and they end up fighting for survival—not only due to injuries, but because there is something in the forest stalking them.

At first the creature just takes their dead—but why? And where are they being taken?

The answers to these questions are frightening, especially as one by one they are led away from the relative safety of the crash site to a sinkhole in the middle of the forest that contains something horrifying.

Will any of them make it out of the forest alive?

Down, Nate Southard’s fifth and latest novel, is an exciting and creepy adventure story. The description of the plane crash is realistic and scary. (I’m glad I didn’t read this before flying to Las Vegas for KillerCon!) The first half of the book had me riveted; however, I was a little disappointed in the second half.

Once the story got into the supernatural, it fell a little flat. That aspect of the story made little sense, and was never explained. There was no reason given for the monster’s existence, what the symbols were for, and how the pit/sinkhole came to being.

But overall, Down is a good story, one most horror lovers would enjoy. This is the first I’ve read of Nate Southard, but I’m looking forward to more of his work.

Down is available through Sinister Grin Press, and other online retailers.

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