Cavallaro's Cavalcade of Carnage
Here is what I did: I read both Mark Sieber's HE WHO TYPES BETWEEN THE ROWS and Cemetery Dance's THE BEST OF THE SCREAM FACTORY, and compiled a list of books to read based on recommendations from both. Most of these books were published between 1978 and 1991, so put on your fingerless gloves and wear sunglasses at night so we can get this started!

I read these:

1: SAINT PETER'S WOLF, by Michael Cadnum. THE BEST OF THE SCREAM FACTORY lists this as their favorite werewolf novel. Very good. Grade: B
2: THE MAN ON THE CEILING by Steve and Melanie Tem. Possibly the most unique read of the month. Expanded from the novella, which I probably would've liked more. Grade: C
3: THE WILD, by Whitley Streiber. Streiber is more enjoyable when he's being crazy, like when he wrote COMMUNION. Grade: C
4: MASTODONIA, by Clifford Simak. We have a winner folks. Grade: A
5: ON A PALE HORSE, by Piers Anthony. I wonder if GOOD OMENS was influenced by this one. Great ideas, but the premise wears off. Grade: C
6: PROPHECY, by David Seltzer. This is the guy that wrote THE OMEN. Pretty good monster novel, but takes too long to get going. Grade: C
7: CITIES OF THE DEAD, by Michael Paine. THE BEST OF THE SCREAM FACTORY's #1 mummy novel. Reads like historical fiction; too slow for me. Grade: C
8: HELLSTONE, by Steven Pruill. Loch Ness book. The plot is way "out there" and fun, but buried in too many words. Grade: C
9: UNDERCURRENTS, by Ridley Pearson. This one was in Scoleri's (Scream Factory editor) top ten of horror novels, and I'd never heard of it. It's a well written horror/police procedural novel. Grade: B

It's judgement time.

Worst of the Month: CITIES OF THE DEAD, by Michael Paine

One thing that I must praise Paine for is his knowledge of Egyptian history. With that being said, there is just too much of it in this book. Most of it is the two main characters walking around in the desert, discussing pyramids and pharaohs. Your mileage may vary of course.

and now....*drum roll*

Best of the Month: MASTODONIA, by Clifford Simak

This was an easy choice, and I wouldn't have known about it, if not for HE WHO TYPES BETWEEN THE ROWS. This was the oldest book of the month (1978), so not only should you not judge a book by its cover...don't judge it by its age either. Oddly, this was my first Simak book. Odd, because he is mostly known for his novel, CITY, but also has a well known werewolf novel called THE WEREWOLF PRINCIPLE. I may be the only reader in the world who has started with MASTODONIA. At any rate, this is a great novel. Simak managed to write a thought provoking and adventure-themed science fiction novel that moves along at a fast rate. He writes in enough science for it to be believable, but lets the reader fill in some blanks on their own, all while adding a dash of philosophy, which seems to be Simak's calling card. Highly recommended.

See you guys next month!

Reviews by Jason Cavallaro
Twitter: @pinheadspawn



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