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All the latest Shadow Writer news and announcements.


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2005 news can be viewed here

2004 news can be viewed here

2003 news can be viewed here



Hellraisers, by Paul Kane


With the end of the year in sight, we have one last release to squeeze in – this time another Hellraiser-related book. The long-awaited Hellraisers, which features brand new interviews with the creators of the mythology and films, now has a cover (above). It will be out as an e-book before Christmas and in print in the New Year, published by Avalard.


Hellraiser anthology, Volume 2


And sticking with Hellraiser for a moment, you can find out Paul’s thoughts on the second Hellraiser Anthology (above) in his review for Sci-Fi Bulletin by clicking here.



Jason V. Brock with a copy of Disexistence, by Paul Kane


A couple more releases now, and copies of Paul’s collection Disexistence – as modelled by Cycatrix Press’ Jason V Brock…and friend – have started to ship. You can buy yours by clicking here.


Beneath the Surface, by Simon Clark and Paul Kane


While ARCs of Beneath the Surface, Paul’s first collaboration with bestselling author Simon Clark for SST Publications, have been going out to reviewers. You can order yours by clicking here or here.



Before, by Paul Kane


Another glowing review for Paul’s novel Before has appeared, this time from the British Fantasy Society. Here’s what reviewer Matthew Johns had to say about it: ‘Paul Kane is a celebrated author with a varied back catalogue of work, and this latest novel is a thing of beauty indeed. He crafts an exceptionally detailed world, filled with complex characters, and weaves a wicked narrative that twists and turns, leading the reader through an emotional rollercoaster with the characters. Before opens in 1970s Germany, where a psychiatric patient seems close to making a breakthrough until tragedy strikes. It then moves to Vietnam where a group of US soldiers are on a special ops mission to rescue some of their captured compatriots under the command of the mysterious Captain Finn, but all is not as it seems.

In the present day, Alex Webber finds himself seeing things that aren’t there, and worries that he is having a nervous breakdown. Elsewhere, Finn and his sadistic companion Lucas search for someone, leaving a swathe of destruction behind them. Kane takes the classic struggle of good vs evil, and makes it something more with an almost M Night Shyamalan-esque twist at the end. His writing leaps off the page, enveloping the reader, keeping tight hold of your attention. This is the kind of book that you can easily imagine being made into a Netflix original series or similar – he has written it with many fantastic cliff-hangers that leave the reader not wanting to put the book down. If you’ve not encountered Paul Kane before, get this book, and remember his name – you’ll be seeing it at the front of a film or TV adaptation soon enough, I feel.’

To read the review itself click here.


Before, by Paul Kane - only $2.99 on


There’s a special offer on during December where you can get the Kindle version of the novel for only $2.99/£3.90 (above). And the Before website has now been updated with reviews and links to buy, which you can visit by clicking here, or you can buy the book directly here and here.



Fear, by Jeff Abbott


Our final Guest Writer for 2017 is a good one, New York Times bestselling and award-wining author of thrillers such as Panic, Collision and Fear (above), Jeff Abbott. We have a suitably exciting exclusive extract from his new novel, Blame (below), which you can read here.


Blame, by Jeff Abbott




Poster for The Art of Horror Movies signing, Forbidden Planet


Paul was out and about quite a bit again last month, firstly at the Art of Horror Movies signing at Forbidden Planet and Day of Horror event in London, sponsored by the HWA (photos above and below, including one of Paul with Marie).


Copies of The Art of Horror Movies, by Stephen Jones


HWA event, A Day of Horror sign


Paul Kane and Marie O'Regan


The Art of Horror Movies, edited by Stephen Jones


Signatures for The Art of Horror Movies, edited by Stephen Jones


Signed copy of The Art of Horror Movies, edited by Stephen Jones


Next he was at the Black Library Weekender in Nottingham, which featured panels, talks and guests such as Dan Abnett and George Mann (photos below).


Black Library Weekender


Black Library Weekender, souvenir programme


Fans at the Black Library Weekender


Guests at the Black Library Weekender: Chris Wraight, C L Werner, Dan Abnett, David Annandale


Book for sale at the Black Library Weekender


Audience at Black Library Weekender


Panel at Black Library Weekender. From right: Nick Kyme, Gav Thorpe, Guy Haley


Finally, he was at Sledge-Lit in Derby, which included interviews with Guests of Honour Alison Littlewood and Sarah Pinborough, the HWA-sponsored panel ‘Thrills and Chills’, and the legendary annual Sledge Raffle (photos, again, below).


Alison Littlewood interviewed by Mark West


Sarah Pinborough interviewed by Gary McMahon


Sarah Pinborough, Gary McMahon


HWA sponsored panel: Thrills and Chills. L to R: Jo Jakeman, Simon Clark, Tracey Fahy, Sarah Pinborough, Alex Davis


Simon Clark


Sledge Lit Raffle. L to R: Pixie, Sarah Pinborough, Gary McMahon


Pixie Peigh


Sledge was also the first appearance of copies of The Life Cycle, of course, published by Black Shuck Books (above and below).


The Life Cycle, Paul Kane


Copies of The Life Cycle, by Paul Kane


Half-Life, by Paul Kane


Story Notes, Paul Kane


If you missed out on buying yours, you can order it here.


The next event Paul will be at is the BFS Christmas Open Night on 8th December at the Vintry on Cannon Street, London.


Finally, you’ll find a brand new interview with Paul up on the Nine Toes Loves Books site. To read it, just click here.


Pinhead, in Santa hat


And so all that remains is to wish visitors to the Shadow Writer site a very happy Xmas and a brilliant New Year. See you in 2018!



The Life Cycle, by Paul Kane


Another month, another book announcement. This time it’s The Life Cycle (above), which gathers together all three of Paul’s original stories – ‘Nightlife’, ‘Half-Life’ and ‘Lifetime’ – along with a brand new addition: ‘Another Life’. Published by Black Shuck as part of their Shadows line, which also contains The Spirits of Christmas (below), the book will launch at Sledge-Lit on 25th November…


The Spirits of Christmas, by Paul Kane




Before, by Paul Kane


Back to another recent release now, and Paul’s novel Before has been gaining even more great reviews. Here’s what The Scary Reviews had to say about it: ‘From the first few chapters I felt Before would be an epic tale. The scope of the story along with the characters and locations gave it a wide scale feel. Paul Kane creates multiple groups of characters in various time periods and begins to weave them into a larger narrative. I really liked the glimpses of the antagonist/villain, The Infinity, that are described as he was revealed a puzzle piece at a time. The story was told from two viewpoints. First, from the protagonist Alex and his struggle to understand the visions he is having. Second, from the antagonist The Infinity, or Mr. Finn as he calls himself, and his right-hand man Lucas. I really enjoyed the flow and feel of the story when we were with Mr. Finn and Lucas. To me that part of the book had a different and noticeable feel. The story really moved with constant action and mystery…

When we reach the climax with The Infinity and Alex I was all about the story again. The story picked back up with a solid pacing and thrilling action. I finally learned what The Infinity wanted and what he was all about. The plot fell into place and many of the previous clues now made sense (which was good because I was wondering if I would ever get any answers). I thought the reveal about Mr. Finn was clever and I loved the character but thought he was a little too easily defeated. This is a problem I’ve found in many fantasy or supernatural books I’ve read, but the author threw a nice curve ball in the end.’


Before artwork


While the icing on the cake has to be this 9/10 review from the mighty Starburst magazine: ‘Paul Kane’s novel Before tells the story of college lecturer Alex Webber’s encounters with mysterious and evil forces, crazed killers, benevolent psychiatrists and a vicious bunch of gangland criminals. With all this in place, it’s a book that could have been a confusing mess; in this author’s capable hands, it’s a gripping and relentless story, one that will have readers relishing every page.

It all kicks off in the 1970s, with scenes in a European psychiatric hospital followed by a military mission in the jungles of the Far East. Kane introduces an array of characters here and although it’s unclear who, if any, will survive, they’re visualised in such a way that we care for them all; however “disposable” these soldiers are, the author gives them equal worth, ensuring none of them are sold short. Kane’s characterisation is like this throughout the book, so much so that it drives the plot, as Alex’s actions force differing reactions from the assortment of antagonists who draw closer as the book progresses, breathing down his neck for much of the final third.

It’s this that makes the book such a compelling read. It’s hard not to ask ourselves what we would do in Alex’s shoes and, if some of his responses feel like a leap of faith, they’re at least in keeping with the character. Exposed to all that’s going on around him, he comes perilously close to losing himself, and it’s easy to imagine being in the same situation by some cruel design. The action is supplemented with horror elements that often come as a shock, with levels of gore that may turn a few stomachs, although Kane handles these extremely well, revealing just enough for the reader’s own imagination to fill in any blanks.

Before is packed with action and, despite the fast pace, allows for moments of genuine emotion; Kane’s heart-on-sleeve prose is always refreshing, an ideal read for those who like their blockbuster thrillers peppered with unnerving mysticism and lively realistic characters. Alex Webber is no action hero in the manner of Jack Reacher, just an ordinary man in highly exceptional circumstances, but this ambitious story is certainly worthy of the same levels of audience.’

You can read the full reviews here and here.


Contributor copies of Before, by Paul Kane


Paul received his contributor copies of the novel from the publisher last month (above) but you can buy your own here or here.



Chopping Block Party contributor copies


Chopping Block Party, edited by Brendan Deneen and David G. Barnett


The Jigsaw Family by Paul Kane, from Chopping Block Party, edited by Brendan Deneen and David G. Barnett


Paul’s contributor copies also arrived last month for a couple of anthologies he’s in, Chopping Block Party and Below the Stairs (see previous news updates for details). Photos above and below.


Below the Stairs, edited by Steve Dillon


Creakers, by Paul Kane - from Below the Stairs, edited by Steve Dillon




Another Hole in the Head festival 2017, official selection


A date and time has been set for the screening of Life-O-Matic at Another Hole in the Head’s film festival. You can see the film at 3pm this coming Saturday, and to visit the site’s page for it just click here.



Hasty for the Dark, by Adam L.G. Nevill


Returning as our Guest Writer this month is the brilliant Adam Nevill, whose latest release is the collection Hasty for the Dark (above). But it’s an extract from The Ritual (below) that we have for you here, recently turned into a movie starring Rafe Spall and Sam Troughton. To read this simply click here.


The Ritual, Adam Nevill




Poster for The Mega Liverpool HorrorCon


Poster: The Mega Liverpool HorrorCon


Paul was out and about a lot last month, firstly as a Guest at The Mega Liverpool Horrorcon (above). There he was on a table with his books, alongside other writers (including Adam) plus traders selling all kinds of horror wares (below).


Traders, Liverpool HorrorCon


Busts, Liverpool HorrorCon


The Mammoth Book of Body Horror, The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women - Books by Marie O'Regan and Paul Kane for sale at Liverpool HorrorCon


Hellbound Hearts, edited by Paul Kane and Marie O'Regan


Paul Kane at  Liverpool HorrorCon


There were lots of cosplayers around and star Guests such as Laurence Harvey, Martine Beswick, Valerie Leon and Caroline Munro, available for photos and to sign for fans (below)


Sadako, Liverpool HorrorCon


Cosplay, Liverpool HorrorCon


Ghostface cosplay, Liverpool HorrorCon


Caroline Munro


Caroline Munro chats to a fan, Liverpool HorrorCon


A couple of Paul’s publishers were also present at the event, Sinister – with copies of Death available – and Hellbound Media, who presented Paul with a certificate as runner up in the Ghastly Awards for The Disease, and also the new musical version of his Scribe Box (all below)


Sinister Press display, including Death by Paul Kane


Death by Paul Kane


Paul Kane with award certificate and a copy of his graphic novel, The Disease


Paul Kane with a scribe puzzle box


A week later Paul was at the cast and crew screening for The Offer, made by the same team who put Leviathan together and starring the likes of Ken Cranham, Barbie Wilde and Simon Bamford. Photos below, including one of Barbie with Marie and Paul.


The Offer poster


Custard Factory, Birmingham


Tree creature sculpture, Custard Factory, Birmingham


The Offer poster


Gary Smart and crew of The Offer


L to R: Barbie Wilde, Marie O'Regan, Paul Kane

Photo © Barbie Wilde


Then a week after that, Paul was a Guest at Sheffield’s Celluloid Screams. There he got to see a brand new episode of Inside No. 9, followed by a Q&A with writer/stars Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith and producer Adam Tandy (below).


Celluloid Screams poster


Celluloid Screams poster for guest Paul Kane


Celluloid Screams - Inside No. 9 poster


L to R: Adam Tandy, Reece Shearsmith, Steve Pemberton and organiser Robert Nevitt


L to R: Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith


Steve Pemberton


But he was there primarily to host the Q&A after the 30th Anniversary screening of Helllraiser, with Nicholas Vince who played Chatterer and Effects Supervisor Geoff Portass (below).


Hellraiser poster, 30th anniversary


Celluloid Screams 30th Anniversary Hellraiser screening


The audience for the 30th anniversary Hellraiser Screening, Celluloid Screams


L to R: Nicholas Vince, Geoff Portass, Paul Kane

Photo © John McLauchlin


And in the run up to Halloween, Paul was a virtual Guest over at The Horror Lounge (below) where he was interviewed here, participated in a Twitter Q&A with Marie about the HWA, and a 2 ½ hour Facebook chat and Q&A about Clive Barker. 


Horror Lounge


The next live events Paul will be at are the London Forbidden Planet signing for Stephen Jones’ The Art of Horror Movies followed by an HWA afternoon at the Royal George (below) on 11th November and, as previously mentioned, Sledge-Lit on 25th. Hopefully he’ll see you at one or both of these!


Horror Writers Association UK presents A DAY OF HORROR




Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell, by Paul Kane, with puzzle box and chain


A promo video for Servants of Hell (above) and the Servants box has been made by Joe Manco at Little Spark Films. You can watch this by clicking play below…



Sherlock Holmes and the Servants Of Hell from Little Spark Films on Vimeo.



Beneath the Surface, by Simon Clark and Paul Kane


You can now pre-order Paul’s first ever collaboration with bestselling author Simon Clark, the limited edition Beneath the Surface, from Amazon. Just click here.




Willard, Ben DVD


Finally, last month Paul reviewed the box set of Willard and Ben (above) for Mass Movement magazine and Channel Zero (below) for Sci-Fi Bulletin. You can read what he had to say by clicking here and here.


Channel Zero season one DVD




The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker, 10th Anniversary edition


The big news this month, as announced on the 30th Anniversary of Hellraiser screening at cinemas, is Paul’s full cast audio drama of The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker. Produced by Bafflegab, this will be a brand new take on the mythos and you can read all about it in Sci-Fi Bulletin’s report here.


The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker, Pinhead skull image


And sticking with Sci-Fi Bulletin for a moment, you can read Paul’s review of Grady Hendrix’s amazing Paperbacks from Hell (below) on that same site – just click here.


Paperbacks from Hell by Grady Hendrix



Haunted Nights, edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton


The Turn, by Paul Kane - Haunted Nights, edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton


Moving on to Paul’s appearances in anthologies now, and his contributor copies of the mass market book Haunted Nights – featuring his story ‘The Turn’ (above) – arrived last month. The Halloween-inspired anthology, published by Doubleday/Anchor/Blumhouse and edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton, also received another glowing review – this time from Booklist, who said: ‘The entire collection is solid and refreshing... the perfect holiday companion.’


Chopping Block Party, edited by Brendan Deneen and David G. Barnett


Secondly, the book featuring Paul’s story ‘The Jigsaw Family’, Chopping Block Party (above) published by Necro, is now available to order at the link here.


Below The Stairs, Tales from the Cellar - edited by Steve Dillon


Finally, Paul’s story ‘Creakers’ is getting another airing in Below the Stairs, alongside the likes of Ramsey Campbell and Clive Barker (above).



Pinhead, art by Clive Barker


Speaking of Clive, Paul and Marie were at a charity exhibition of his artwork in September, hosted by long-time Barker fan and collaborator Russell Cherrington. You can see pictures from this above and below, including one of Paul with a painting by Clive.


Sketches by Clive Barker


Artwork by Clive Barker


Sculpture by Derby artist


Books of Blood artwork by Clive Barker


Abarat cover by Clive Barker


Paul Kane, artwork by Clive Barker




The Bone Ritual by Julian Lees


Our Guest Writer for October now, and it’s our pleasure to announce Julian Lees – author of chilling thrillers like The Bone Ritual (above). Here he is again with The Burnings (below), and you can read an exclusive extract from that one here.


The Burnings by Julian Lees




Official Selection SFindie's 'Another Hole in the Head' Film Festival


Film news, and the movie version of Paul’s story ‘Life-O-Matic’ has just been picked up as an official selection for SFIndie’s Another Hole in the Head festival (above).


Hallows Eve poster, UK release on Netflix


Hallows Eve, available on Netflix now


And Brad Watson’s excellent Hallows Eve has now dropped on Netflix (above). Brad is the very talented director who is bringing Lunar to the big screen (below).


Lunar, by Paul Kane




HWA panel at FantasyCon 2017. L to R: Stephen Jones, Marie O'Regan, Peter Crowther, Ramsey Campbell, Paul Kane

Photo © PS Publishing.


Paul was of course at FantasyCon at the end of last month, so above and below you can find pictures from this, including: Paul (right) on the HWA Publishing Panel with (L-R) Stephen Jones, Marie (who was chairing), Peter Crowther and horror legend Ramsey Campbell; the launch for Titan Books’ New Fear Anthology, edited by Mark Morris; and the FCon Banquet.  


Mark Morris' New Fears launch. L to R: Nina Allan, Alison Littlewood, Stephen Gallagher, A.K. Benedict, Mark Morris, Ramsey Campbell, Stephen Laws


New Fears, edited by Mark Morris, cover.


Signatures from contributors, New Fears, edited by Mark Morris


FantasyCon 2017 banquet


PS nameplate, Paul Kane, FantasyCon 2017 banquet


FantasyCon banquet - L to R, front: Sheryl and Mike Smith of PS Publishing, Paul Kane. L to R, back: Alison Littlewood, Fergus Beadle, Jan Siegel, Pat Cadigan, Val Edwards, Les Edwards, Marie O'Regan

Photo © Stephen Jones


FantasyCon banquet. L to R: Paul Kane, Mike Smith, Sheryl Smith, Alison Littlewood, Fergus Beadle, Jan Siegel. L to R, front: Marie O'Regan, Les Edwards, Val Edwards, Pat Cadigan

Photo © Stephen Jones



The Mega Liverpool HorrorCon


The next event Paul will be at is Liverpool HorrorCon, where he is a Guest. It takes place this coming weekend at the Exhibition Centre, Liverpool.


HWA presents: A Day of Horror


And after that he will be at the Art of Horror Movies Launch in November at Forbidden Planet in London, followed by HWA drinks in the pub for anyone who wants to come along (poster above).



Shadow-Writer the Non-Fiction, vols 1 and 2, by Paul Kane


Finally, ebook deal news. There’s a sale on a BearManor at the moment – 15% off all ebook titles using code X05RCWUZ, including Paul’s non-fiction books (above). To visit the site and order, just click here.


Before by Paul Kane, free on Amazon kindle unlimited


And you can now download Before for free on Kindle if you’re an Unlimited member (above). The link for this one is here.



Before, by Paul Kane


Paul’s new novel, Before, is out now and several glowing reviews have already cropped up. The first comes from newsstand magazine, HorrorVille (below) – who ran a piece on Paul in their last issue (see previous news sections for details).


Horrorville magazine


Horrorville review of Before, by Paul Kane


The 4 star review (above) by Stephen Jewell had this to say: ‘Describing it as his answer to Cloud Atlas, American Gods and The Great and Secret Show, Before shows that Paul Kane most definitely doesn’t lack ambition as a writer… There’s plenty here to intrigue fans of Neil Gaiman’s literary road trip…but it’s Clive Barker to whom Kane owes the largest debt. Spanning several centuries and time periods, the far-reaching plot encompasses the Cambodian War and 1970s Germany. The plot mostly centres around Alex Webber, though, a university lecturer who not only has to deal with growing further and further apart from his wife Beverly, but also with the unwelcome return of errant brother Steve. After suffering from a series of increasingly intense hallucinations, where he is transported to all sorts of strange settings, Alex is hospitalised and comes under the care of psychiatrist Ellen Hayward. Somehow tied up in all this is malevolent supernatural being The Infinity and his sadistic sidekick Lucas Peck, not to mention organised crime lord Nick Metcalf and his hulk-like henchmen Terry and Frank. At first underplaying any fantastical elements, Kane gradually builds up the tension, taking his time before revealing the truth behind the novel’s central mystery… A slow burn that’s ultimately rewarding, it’ll be interesting to see where Kane ends up after Before.’    


Before, by Paul Kane


The second, another 4 star review, appeared at Dread Central and was written by Steve Dillon. This was his take: ‘I’m not sure where to begin with my review of this latest novel from Paul Kane as it twists between timelines, locations, characters, plot, and even sub-genres. So, I feel I ought to begin by stating that Before has all the hallmarks of Kane, complete with a ton of what to me seem like Clive Barker influences without becoming imitative or derivative. The opening hooks you into a commonplace horror movie scene, minus the lightning. A young psychiatrist is offered the chance to work with his idol in 1970s Germany, who hears first-hand the deranged utterings of a man whose mind has been lost to some cosmic horror or other, we know not what that may be, or whether it is real. In Chapter Two we’re transported to jungle warfare in South-East Asia and you now believe you’re into an archetypal military horror genre book, or movie – it’s all very cinematic to read. Then the twists come and you realise it might just be real after all.

So, that’s the first two chapters, and we’re still in Part One of the book! Part Two begins in Kirkwell and introduces us to Alex, a teacher of Media and Film and his wife Beverly, as we’re immersed in their life of domestic un-bliss, a relationship clearly gone sour, but there is hope for the couple who still live together and keep up the pretence of a marriage to outsiders. We also get to meet the rogue brother-in-law (and thrice-divorced) Steve as well as Alex’s friend James, and there is additional tension here… Chapter Five takes us from Kirkwell to Amsterdam and we’re clearly now in serial killer country in a big way, but again the supernatural elements introduced in an earlier chapter come flooding back. Here it gets quite bloody and full of tension, with a very cinematic sequence of events and introduction to more characters you think you may never get to meet again. Or will you? That’s part of Kane’s method, I now realise: to make you to believe in a character who may or may not be disposed of several pages later. And so it continues, more characters, more killings, more supernatural elements and surprises until eventually they all come together, and in a way that makes you think, “of course” and “I never saw that coming” all at once.

I won’t continue with a chapter by chapter summary, but let’s say that if you enjoy Barker, you will love Kane. I feel he has matured a lot and is now conjuring these fantastical workings as memorably as the master imagineer Barker, whom Kane has spent so long studying. Not to diminish Kane’s work in any way, as this is truly compelling reading and I am going to have to buy the book and read it again in its printed form. And most likely again after that, before… ah, but that’s the surprise at the bottom of the Christmas stocking and I refuse to spoil that moment for you.’

You can read the full thing here.


Before, by Paul Kane


Next up, Kendall Reviews and Ginger Nuts of Horror who gave the book another 4 stars – had this to say: ‘One of the first things I read about Before was Paul Kane himself calling his latest novel his The Great And Secret Show. Now that’s some claim! Clive Barker is one of my favourite authors, with The Great and Secret Show being a true epic within his bibliography. This not only shows Kane’s confidence in his new 491 page tome but it also sets a level of expectation for any prospective reader. Before is a thoroughly enjoyable adventure story with horror/supernatural elements. Although not as eloquent as Barker, Kane’s prose is incredibly effective. I particularly enjoyed the Cambodian Village chapters, full of believable characters and well written action set pieces. It was also here that I noticed my first real nod to Barker, a sequence of events made me think of the attic at 55 Ludovico Street. (I won’t be more specific as I hate to post spoilers, but once you read it I’m sure you’ll agree.)

Alex Webber is a believable lead and plays off well against Ellen, his psychiatrist. I did find the love triangle a tad melodramatic with too much attention paid to Beverly, Alex’s ex-wife. My main issue with Before is the criminal underuse of The Infinity, a fantastic creation. I loved it anytime he was on the page, which wasn’t anywhere near enough sadly. I thoroughly enjoyed his dialogue and the way he interacted with his minions. To counter that though, Kane really shone with Lucas Peck, a nasty piece of work who has a unique talent. Peck is The Infinity’s sadistic sidekick, and with his skills, I’m not sure if there isn’t a touch of the Cenobite about him. And don’t get me started on what he does with some flowers! Paul Kane can certainly tell a story! To be able to keep the reader engaged across multiple settings, eras and genre can only be classed as a triumph. Before mixes action adventure, horror and the supernatural skilfully. I burned through nigh on 500 pages in only a few days. Before may not have been as epic a story as I was expecting, but it was a fast-paced enjoyable read that kept me hooked till its thrilling conclusion.’

You can read the full thing here and here.


Before, by Paul Kane - wraparound cover


Finally, the Grim Reader – also with a 4/5 – commented: ‘I am a big fan of Paul Kane’s work. I absolutely loved his Sherlock Holmes/Cenobite mash-up novel, Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell. So much so it featured in my top 10 reads for 2016. Going into Before, my expectations were pretty big and when I heard Kane had teamed up with Grey Matter Press for this epic dark fantasy/horror novel my interest was immediately piqued. I knew prior to starting this that it is a big book and there is always a niggling doubt that a novel so long might be a little bit of a slog to get through. To be honest, it’s one of the reasons I don’t read as much fantasy fiction anymore. I still enjoy the genre a great deal, but the length of these novels is often an issue for this reader. Does it really need to be 500+ pages long AND part of a trilogy?

Anyway, I digress. I’m here to tell you, dear reader, of my thoughts about Paul Kane’s new novel, Before. For starters, the cover art by Dean Samed is wonderful. Looking at it makes me think this will be a story taking place over a substantial amount of time, with two sides locked in a battle of good vs evil, perhaps a hero will arise and face-off against a dark enemy? Before gets off to a great start and I was pulled into the story immediately as we delve into the past, 1970s Germany to be exact. It gives us a glimpse into how long the cycle of events forthcoming has been going on and it sets the foundations for a novel of epic proportions! The book’s antagonist is called The Infinity. Very early on I’m thinking back to King’s The Stand and one man in particular: Randall Flagg! The Infinity has been around for years, pulling the strings of his puppets to assist him in reaching his end goal. In the earlier parts of the book, The Infinity exists on the periphery, an ominous presence lurking in the background, though one capable of unspeakable acts of evil. He is a really, really great character though one I felt was a little underused, especially early in the book. The Infinity doesn’t work alone. He has an ally, someone he controls called Lucas Peck. Peck is a violent murderer. A murderer that likes to create his “art” by torturing and pulling apart his victims, decorating the walls with their insides! I know Kane is a massive fan of Clive Barker and I definitely got a Cenobite vibe from this character and I loved it!

On the other side, we have the protagonist, Alex Webber, a lecturer and a bit of a sad sack if I’m being honest. The flame of love between himself and wife Beverly has long since extinguished and she now only seems to exist as a bit of an annoyance. Add to this the fact that Webber is plagued by visions of the past: visions of death and destruction that are horrific and realistic, resulting in further stress on his already taut relationships. It’s safe to say that things aren’t going too well for Alex Webber. But what do these visions of the past mean to Webber? And who is the mysterious man with the bright blue eyes? All these questions are answered as the pieces of Kane’s puzzle slowly fall into place. There are other characters too like psychiatrist Ellen Hayward, another key figure in the story. All are pretty well-drawn by Kane, though it’s The Infinity that shines brightest.

Kane’s Before could make a great movie, or an even better Netflix series! It’s an absorbing and engaging read, ambitious in both lengths and in its ideas… The book’s end of days style concept means I am always going to compare it to The Stand and Swan Song, perhaps unfairly, as these are two of my favourite stories. Both are similarly long, complex, and feature a scenario where the world’s future hangs in the balance. Kane’s tale is similar and very well executed though Webber didn’t quite resonate as strongly as certain characters from those books. However, Before does feature a cast of solid characters and a fascinating plot that spans decades, The Infinity is a great villain and I’d be very happy to read about him again. The action scenes are exciting, the dialogue is smooth and the ending to Before is worth the wait. Kane’s latest novel is epic and King/McCammon fans will find a lot to like here. I can highly recommended this book and it is yet another tick in the box for Paul Kane and for Grey Matter Press.’

You can read the full thing here.


You can visit the dedicated Before website by clicking here and also get 40% off the Kindle version at the moment in the run up to release by clicking here.



Death, by Paul Kane


Before wasn’t the only one of Paul’s recent books to be reviewed favourably last month, though. Giving it 9/10, here’s what Alister Davison from Starburst had to say about his latest collection: ‘Death is author Paul Kane’s collection of ten short stories and one play, all with a central theme of mortality. From its title and subject matter, you’d be forgiven in thinking this is going to be a set of grim tales, seeing characters encountering a cloaked figure with a scythe, or walking into a bright light. In every single one of the stories, Kane toys with the usual clichés or avoids them altogether; there are also laughs to be had, with a wicked sense of humour on display from start to finish. Be warned if you’re in a public place – nobody expects a giggle from someone reading a book with the grim reaper on the cover.

The standard of writing remains high from start to finish, although two highlights stand out. “The Return of Mortis-Man” is a pulp superhero tale packed with thrills and spills, as well as some truly poignant moments, a story that will have anyone familiar with comics raising a wry smile all the way through it. It has numerous obvious inspirations, yet remains utterly unique. “The Lazarus Condition” appears to be almost superficial at first, as police attempt to solve the return of a man who has risen from the dead and taken it upon himself to visit his elderly mother. This causes understandable problems, but what could have easily been a standard procedural with a twist is made into so much more; packed with depth and emotional resonance, it’s incredibly moving.

Kane possesses the ability of making readers care about his characters, even in the shortest of these stories, and can get us on their side in just a few words. He’s adept at pulling the rug out from under anyone who thinks they’ve got the twist ending figured out, whether it’s by adding a second turn of the screw or going in a completely different, yet fitting, direction. Death is a first-class collection from a first-class writer, one who can create moments of great terror and amusement, one after the other. An absolute delight from start to finish, it’s a superb introduction to anyone who hasn’t read Paul Kane’s work before and will surely appease his long-term fans as well.’


You can read the whole thing here.



Haunted Nights, by Ellen Datlow


More review love now, this time for the mass market HWA anthology Paul is in published by Blumhouse/Anchor and edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton: Haunted Nights. The book received a prestigious boxed and starred review in Publishers Weekly, which said: ‘Halloween brings out the best in horror writers as this fright-packed anthology of 15 new stories with Halloween themes demonstrates… Editors Datlow and Morton have filled this book with an assortment of Halloween treats whose horrors transcend their holiday setting.’

As if that wasn’t enough, newsstand magazine Rue Morgue said: ‘Haunted Nights offers a collection of disparate stories set during Halloween from a number of great writers… Picking the highlights is difficult when there are so many corkers within these pages with such superb settings…Plenty of writers and artists have offered spins on the annual tradition, but the stories of Haunted Nights add some fine new twists to our fluid understanding and appreciation of Halloween.’ 


Horror Novel Reviews gave the book 5/5 and commented: ‘Blumhouse and Anchor have crafted a collection of Halloween themed stories that shock, inspire a few guffaws and twist up familiar tropes in inventive and engaging ways. The book offers a wealth of talent, including plenty of award-winning and firmly established authors…There wasn’t a single story in this collection that felt underwhelming. Blumhouse and Anchor have aligned a magnificent assortment of talent to creep us out during our favourite time of year. Make no mistake: Haunted Nights is a must-read this Halloween!’

Last but not least, Damaged Skull Writer singled out Paul’s story in particular in his review: ‘I don’t know about you, but I find life a bit more bearable when I have something to look forward to. Especially when that thing is going to be terrifying!... Haunted Nights is coming to bend your mind and terrify you with stories about scheming jack-o’-lanterns, murderous urban legends, vengeful ghosts, and parties gone very, very wrong. Here are brand-new, fresh-from-the-grave stories that are going to rock your world… Who better to edit and collect these tales than award-winning editor Ellen Datlow and one of the world’s leading Halloween experts, Lisa Morton? Combined with a stellar cast of HWA writers, this witches’ brew practically guarantees bad dreams... Paul Kane’s chilling tale “The Turn” takes us on a baffling journey of twists and turns. There is something following people on Halloween night and making them turn and look. Once they look, the rules say that it’s okay for the evil thing to kill them. The thing rationalises this by saying that he is helping people over to the other side. On this same night, there is another man also following the rules. These rules are required to protect oneself from evil spirits and things that may do him in. Unlike the roaming killer, this man is confined to his home by the rules. To step outdoors could be lethal! But they meet when the man is forced to run to the hospital because his Gran is dying… What happens next is not going to be good!’

You can read the full review here.


And you can pre-order the book, which is out on October 3rd by clicking here.




BFS Horizons #5 cover


Another one of Paul’s stories ‘Disexistence’ – taken from the collection of the same name – appeared as a promotion in the new edition of the BFS’ Horizons magazine last month. You can see the results above and below.


Disexistence, by Paul Kane


Disexistence, by Paul Kane




Fiona A. Cummins


Next, we’re very excited to welcome our Guest Writer for this month – Fiona Cummins (above) – to celebrate the paperback release of her incredible debut novel, Rattle (below) published by Macmillan. To read a thrilling extract, just click here.


Rattle, by Fiona Cummins




Oceanside Film Festival


Above and below you’ll find photos from the screening of Life-O-Matic last month at the Oceanside International Film Festival, taking place at the Sunshine Brooks Theatre in California. The evening also included a Q&A with the director Jim Phillips and cast, who you can see below on the red carpet (with Jim in the centre).


Life-O-Matic cast and director


Sunshine Brooks Theatre, Oceanside Film Festival




HHighlighting Horror event - L to R: Stepahen Gallagher, Jason Arnopp, Eric Steele, Joe Ahearne


L to R: Stephen Gallagher, Jason Arnopp, Eric Steele


Sticking with film for a moment, photos now from the hugely successful HWA Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting event at the Quad in Derby last month (see previous news sections for details). Above you can see (L-R) Stephen Gallagher, Jason Arnopp, moderator Eric Steele and Joe Ahearne on the ‘What Makes a Good Horror Script?’ panel, while below you’ll find Stephen Volk giving his talk on Writing Paranormal TV…


Alex Davis of the Quad introducing Stephen Volk


Stephen Volk


….below you’ll find the Short Film panel line-up, a shot of some of the audience members, plus the line-up for the TV panel….


Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting - Short Film Panel with Jason Arnopp, Cat Davies, Jennifer Handorf, James Moran and Owen Tooth


A packed room for the Highlighting Horror Scriptwriting day


Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting - How To Break Into Writing for TV panel, with Joe Ahearne, Alex Davis, Stephen Gallagher, James Moran and Stephen Volk


…then you have highlights from the Short Film and Clips showcase, featuring trailers from Simeon Halligan’s White Settlers & Habit, Owen Tooth’s short Hunted, Cat Davies & James Moran’s trailer for Bloodshed and Cat’s short Connie, complete with special guest…


Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting -  Short filmshowcase - Simeon Halligan, Owen Tooth, Cat Davies and James Moran


White Settlers titles


Owen Tooth


Hunted titles


James Moran


Cat Davies and Connie


Connie titles


A scene from Connie


Finally, producer Jennifer Handorf introducing Prevenge, written and directed by Alice Lowe.


Jennifer Handorf


Prevenge poster


Alice Lowe in a scene from Prevenge


The next event Paul and Marie will be at is FantasyCon in Peterborough at the end of September. Photos from this coming in next month’s news update.



Leviathan - The Story of Hellraiser and Hellbound: Hellraiser II, by Christian Sellers and Gary Smart


Paul’s copy of the Leviathan book – a companion to the documentary – arrived recently (above and below). He contributed the Afterword to this one, and if you want to read more about the DVD you can visit its section on the SW site here.


Internal pages, Leviathan


Internal pages, Leviathan


Afterword to Leviathan, by Paul Kane




Dreamscape poster


Paul has reviewed the new Blu-ray editions of those 80s classics Dreamscape (above) and Electric Dreams (below) for Mass Movement. You can read his thoughts here and here.


Electric Dreams poster




Signing sheets for Beneath the Surface, by Paul Kane and Simon Clark


Lastly, Paul met up with collaborator and bestselling author Simon Clark to sign the sheets and bookmarks for Beneath the Surface last month (see the previous news for more on this one). The book is due to be released soon, but you can pre-order it at the publisher SST’s site here.


Simon Clark


Simon Clark


Paul Kane


signature - Paul Kane




Beneath the Surface, Simon Clark and Paul Kane

The first piece of news for August is yet another book announcement, what will be Paul’s fifth this year. This time it’s a very special collaboration with bestselling and award-winning author Simon Clark: Beneath the Surface (above). The stunning cover is by the legendary Steve Crisp, who provided covers for Simon’s first few books like Nailed by the Heart, Blood Crazy, Darker and King Blood, as well as many others, including Richard Laymon’s Fiends (both below)


King Blood, Simon Clark - Steve Crisp artwork


Richard Laymon, Fiends - Steve Crisp artwork


This from the official PR: ‘The Second World War, and in the aftermath of a bloody desert skirmish survivors from both sides find themselves facing yet another battle: a battle just to stay alive. Not simply because they are in the middle of nowhere, with hardly any supplies, but because they are being hunted by something that has made the desert its home. A monstrous thing with a taste for human flesh, that will not stop until either they are dead or it is. As the soldiers begin to discover that they are not so dissimilar beneath their uniforms, they are also starting to realise that there is something else beneath the surface of the sand. Something no-one has ever seen before. Something deadly, dangerous and extremely hard to kill… From the imaginations of award-winning and bestselling authors Simon Clark (Vampyrrhic, The Night of the Triffids) and Paul Kane (Blood RED, Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell) writing together for the first time, comes a tale of terror and heroism, of survival and horror. A tale that will stay with you, get under your skin and remain beneath the surface for a long time to come. Complete with cover art by Steve Crisp (who provided the covers for Simon’s first books, such as Nailed by the Heart and Blood Crazy) this is one collectors’ item you won’t want to miss!’

Signed by Simon, Paul and Steve (signing sheets below), you can pre-order your copy by visiting the publisher SST’s site here.


Signing sheets for Beneath the Surface: Simon Clark, Paul Kane, Steve Crisp




Before, by Paul Kane


News now about another forthcoming book of Paul’s, his novel Before, which has just been given a publication date of September 5th. The book, published by Grey Matter, has also been given its very own promotional website here. This features a pre-order page, but you can visit that directly by clicking here.


Before, by Paul Kane




Chopping Block Party, edited by Brendan Deneen and David G. Barnett


Another cover reveal, this time for a forthcoming anthology published by Necro, Chopping Block Party – which features the likes of Ray Garton, Richard Chizmar and Tim Waggoner, not to mention an introduction from Friday the 13th screenwriter Victor Miller. The book contains Paul’s story ‘The Jigsaw Family’.



Official selection, Oceanside International Film Festival


The film version of Paul’s story ‘Life-O-Matic’ has just been granted Official Selection status at the Oceanside International Film Festival (above) and will screen on Thursday August 11th,18:00, at the event, which takes place at the Sunshine Brooks Theatre in California. Life-O-Matic also now has its own little corner in the Film Section part of the Shadow Writer site, so to visit this just click here.



Rio Youers


We’re very happy to welcome back our Guest Writer for this month in the form of Rio Youers, who has a new thriller out called The Forgotten Girl from St Martin’s Press. To read an exclusive extract, just click here.


The Forgotten Girl, by Rio Youers




The Hellbound Heart, by Clive Barker (Dominic Harman cover)


Last month Paul was asked to choose his Top Ten books for SST’s blog. You can read what he came up with by clicking here.



Edge-Lit 6. L to R: Adele Wearing, Heide Goody, Andrew Hook, Ash Hartwell, Paul Kane


L to R: Ash Hartwell, Paul Kane


Photos now from Edge-Lit in July where Paul was on two panels, including this one above about the benefits of working with independent presses.


Paul Kane


Paul also launched his new collection Death (see previous news sections for details) at Edge, and did a reading from one of the stories (above). It was the first appearance of the collection in hardback, courtesy of publishers The Sinister Horror Company (below).


Death, by Paul Kane




Liverpool Horror Con poster


Staying with events for the time being, and both Paul and Marie have been announced as Guests at the Mega Liverpool Horrorcon (above) alongside people like Adam Nevill and David Moody. The event takes place on 7th & 8th October; more details closer to the time.



Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting flyer


And the HWA’s ‘Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting’ event at the Quad has a new flyer (above), plus it has added two great new names to the line-up: Stephen Gallagher – creator of Eleventh Hour, which starred Patrick Stewart – and Joe Ahearne, who recently wrote and directed the BBC thriller The Replacement (both below).


Eleventh Hour, created by Stephen Gallagher


The Replacement, written by Joe Ahearne


The day will take place on Saturday 19th August and you can book your ticket here.



Nailbiters, by Paul B. Kane


Finally, an incredibly detailed review of Paul’s crime/psychological collection Nailbiters has appeared on the Rising Shadow website. Here are some of the highlights of what was said: ‘Paul B. Kane’s Nailbiters is one of the most thrilling short story collections of the year, because it contains many tales of crime and psychological terror. The author delivers such delicious chills and thrills with his stories that readers will be instantly captivated by their disturbing atmosphere. I’m glad I had an opportunity to read Nailbiters, because it’s an excellent collection. I have to confess that I’m not very familiar with the author’s stories, so Nailbiters served as an introduction into his fiction. I can mention that this collection was a memorable reading experience that left me wanting more, because I found all of the stories good and kept turning pages in order to find out what happens at the end of each. It’s been a while since I’ve read this kind of fiction in such a thrilling format.

The contents can be classified as crime fiction, thriller fiction and psychological horror fiction, but on the whole they can be classified as dark fiction. These genres seamlessly interlink with each other in some of the stories, because the author blends them on purpose to awaken feelings of terror and unease in his readers…These stories have several elements in common, but all of them are original, thrilling and inventive. Many of them are intriguingly disturbing, because the author writes boldly and unflinchingly about serial killers, disturbed people and death. Here’s more information about some of the stories and my thoughts about them… Grief Stricken: I found this revenge story fascinatingly unsettling, because the author offers readers a glimpse into the darkness that may be found inside all of us. Check-out: The author writes perfectly about Janet and her life. He paints a stark and bleak picture… It was chilling (and touching) to read about how Janet felt about her life and her work, because all the years of neglect and mental abuse seemed to have scarred her. This story is an excellent example of a psychologically effective story that is difficult to forget once you’ve read it.

The Opportunity: A well written short story about a stalker who’s waiting for the right opportunity to do something nasty. Cold Call: A story about Martin who works at CompliCalls and sells things over the phone and becomes the target of a person who begins to make calls to him. This story has an excellent and chilling ending. The Torturer: Here’s a word of warning to squeamish readers: If you’re easily shocked or have a weak stomach, you should perhaps think twice before reading this story, because you may find it shocking and disturbing… Gemini Rising: This is one of the best and most memorable serial killer stories I’ve ever read, because it has a deeply disturbing feel to it. The Anniversary: This brilliant story gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “for better or worse, in sickness and in health”. I enjoyed the ending very much, because the author has a wonderfully pitch-black sense of humour. 1, 2, 3...1, 2, 3: This is an interesting and a different kind of a story about OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder).The Greatest Mystery: This story is an excellent and inventive take on Sherlock Holmes stories and demonstrates the author’s writing skills. I’m happy to say that this is one of the best Sherlock Holmes stories I’ve read to date. Baggage: A well written story with a satisfyingly twisted ending.

Graffitiland: An excellent and interesting story with a touch of noir. There’s something about this story that reminds me a bit of the Sin City graphic novels and films. The Protégé: The ending of this short story is fascinatingly brutal... Nine Tenths: Ren is a thief who breaks into an apartment and finds out that he’s made a big mistake. I liked the ending of this story very much… Blackout: A gripping story about Kelly and her fear of the dark. This story has some of the best descriptions of what it feels like to be alone in the dark I’ve seen in ages, because the author writes about how Kelly reacts to being alone in the middle of a blackout and starts to imagine things. The Cyclops: One of the best stories in this collection… A Nightmare on 34th Street: I think that readers will find this Christmas story intriguing and memorable, because it’s something different. It’s not your normal kind of a Christmas story… Sin: The references to the film Seven add a nice touch of style to the storyline. This excellent and surprising story is one of the highlights in this collection and will impress many readers…
What’s great about these stories is that the author uses mundane environments as locations for the chilling and unsettling happenings. He manages to turn everyday places into places of evil and terror. He demonstrates that crime and terror can be found everywhere. No matter how safe we assume certain places to be, something bad or unexpected may happen to us. This adds a special kind of a chill factor to this collection. I also have to mention that what makes these stories especially effective and unforgettable is that normal people can become killers when the conditions are right. Such ordinary people as housewives, sons and check-out personnel may find terrifying darkness inside themselves… I like Paul Kane’s writing style, because he knows how to write thrilling and entertaining stories that have surprise endings. It’s great that many of his stories begin in a normal way and then take a deep plunge into a weirder and more disturbing direction…I highly recommend Paul B. Kane’s Nailbiters to readers who love crime fiction, thriller fiction and psychological horror fiction, because it contains stories that will linger on the readers’ minds. If you enjoy unsettling dark fiction and like to read suspenseful stories, you should read this collection, because it’s one of the best and most intriguing collections of its kind. Highly recommended!’

To read the full review, click here and to buy the book from the publisher Black Shuck Books, click here.



Resident Evil Vendetta


Finally, last month Paul reviewed Resident Evil: Vendetta (above) for Sci-Fi Bulletin, and you can read his thoughts on that here.



Before, by Paul Kane


The wraparound cover for Paul’s new novel, Before, was revealed last month and we’re sure you’ll agree it looks amazing. Proofs of the book also arrived at Paul’s house (photos below).


Before, by Paul Kane


Before, by Paul Kane


Before by Paul Kane


Interior artwork, Before by Paul Kane


Before, by Paul Kane


Paul will be bringing along a copy of the book to show people at Edge-Lit in Derby a week on Saturday (15 July)…


Death by Paul Kane


…where he will also be launching his new collection Death, the wraparound for which has also just been unveiled. The launch will be at 1pm where Paul and A.K. Benedict, who kindly did the introduction, will be in attendance along with publishers Sinister, and you can pre-order the paperback here. Double-sided postcards featuring both book covers have also been produced for the day (below).


Postcards: Death and Before by Paul Kane


Paul’s panels for Edge have now been announced, as well: at 10am he’s on a panel called ‘Think Small’ about the benefits of working with small and independent publishers and at 12pm he’s on ‘From the Dead – Is Horror Fiction Climbing Back Towards Its Peak of Popularity Once Again?’. You can book your ticket for the event and see the full schedule by clicking here.



The Black Room Manuscripts Vol. 3.


Sticking with Sinister for a moment, and the cover of the third in the Black Room Manuscripts anthology series has been revealed (above). This one features writers such as Adam Nevill, Paul Tremblay, David Moody and Guy N. Smith, plus a brand new story from Paul called ‘Followers’.



Highlighting Horror. Left to Right: Stephen Volk, Jason Arnopp, James Moran, Jennifer Handorf, Simeon Halligan


And sticking with the Quad, Paul & Marie’s new event in conjunction with Alex Davis (who runs Edge) is ‘Highlighting Horror: Scriptwriting’. This will feature such practitioners as (from L-R above) Stephen Volk (Afterlife, The Awakening), Jason Arnopp (The Last Days of Jack Sparks, Stormhouse), James Moran (Severance, Cockneys vs Zombies), Jennifer Handorf (Prevenge, The Devil’s Business) and Simeon Halligan (The Blood Lands, Habit) – with more to come. The day will take place on 19th August and you can find out more on the Facebook page here.



Winner, London Independent Film Awards 2017


Speaking of scriptwriting and films, the short movie based on Paul’s story Life-O-Matic has gained two more accolades. It won Best Horror/Thriller/Sci-Fi Short at the London Independent Film Awards (above) and also ‘Official Selection’ at the Bucharest ShortCut Cinefest event (below)


Bucharest ShortCut CineFest 2017


And the director of the feature version of Paul’s novel Lunar, Brad Watson, has a new movie out that’s available to rent on Sky Store, Hallows Eve (below).


Hallows Eve, Sky Store




The Darkest Day, by Tom Wood


Our Guest Writer for the month of July is none other than Tom Wood, responsible for the excellent ‘Victor’ hitman series published by Sphere, which includes Better off Dead and The Darkest Day (above). You can read an exclusive extract from his latest novel, The Final Hour (below), by clicking here.


The Final Hour, by Tom Wood




Monsters, by Paul Kane


A new review of Paul’s British Fantasy Award-nominated collection Monsters has appeared on the BFS website. This is what Dave Jeffrey had to say: ‘Unless genre readers have been living in a fall-out shelter for the past thirty years, Paul Kane’s affiliation with (and great affection for) Hellraiser is no secret. He is quoted by Barker himself as “the resident Hellraiser expert”. But if it still remains unclear then fear not, there are unmistakable nods to this affiliation early on in Kane’s collection, Monsters. A terrific Barker painting stalks the cover, for example, while an introduction from Cenobite Nicholas Vince tells us that monsters come in all forms, with humans often pushing in ahead of the amoral queue. There is always a danger that such franchises cast mighty shadows over the original works of those associated with them. So it was of interest to this reviewer to see if this was the case when reading Kane’s latest offering.

With the exception of the tale “Lifetime”, Monsters is a collection of reprinted stories spanning a 17 year period in Kane’s extensive career. Despite the convoluted publishing timeline there is a surprising consistency in the writing, proving that these tales may well be a mixed bag but they remain as relevant today as the respective decades in which they were written. The narrative is strong and assured, as you would expect from someone of Kane’s calibre, mesmerising the reader with the ease of a sales assistant who has mastered the art of hypnosis. Reviews are inherently subjective, especially when applied to collections. But this reviewer argues that this is part of their appeal, much like the songs on an album, some resonate more than others.

Kane’s whimsical approach to storytelling apparent in “Dracula in Love”, “A Chaos Demon is for Life”, and “Guilty Pleasures” is delightful, at once blending humour and poignant satire. In “Dracula in Love”, the titular count seeks out therapy to address his infatuation with a young woman duped into visiting his castle. Love-struck and off his game, Dracula is advised to talk things through with his beau, with a deliciously dark and humorous outcome. In “A Chaos Demon is for Life …” the parents of a young boy summon a demon for his Christmas present, only for it to run amok in a quirky story laced with outlandish action and Dhalesque imagery. “Guilty Pleasures” is a poignant, delicate tale that tells of a guilt demon and its cynical influence on the lives and decisions of ordinary people. It ends on an ironic, philosophical note, and the story themes do linger in the psyche, easily making it my personal favourite from the collection. “Keeper of the Light” is a sombre, atmospheric tale of a world slowly succumbing to a perpetual darkness that hides terrible things, kept tenuously at bay by a failing system of lighthouses. This is a brooding, powerful story with an ending that leaves the reader with an ambiguous feeling of dark hope.

Overall, Monsters is a solid collection, reaffirming Kane as a writer of quality, a celebration of his longstanding ability to create unique worlds of fear and whimsy. It leaves no doubt that, far from being lost in the shadows of the Hellraiser mantle, here is a writer basking only in a light of his own making.’

You can read the full thing here.



Resident Evil, The Final Chapter


Finally, last month Paul reviewed both Resident Evil: The Final Chapter and the original Amityville Horror (above and below) for Sci-Fi Bulletin. You can read these here and here.


The Amityville Horror



Night Shift by Stephen King, artwork by Dave McKean


The first piece of news this month is that copies of the new version of Stephen King’s Night Shift published by PS has shipped. As reported in previous news sections, this edition contains gorgeous cover and internal art by Dave McKean and an afterword by Paul and Marie (photos above and below).


Night Shift by Stephen King, signed PS edition


Night Shift by Stephen King, signing sheet, signed by Dave McKean, Marie O'Regan and Paul Kane


Internal pages (The Boogeyman front page and illustration) from Night Shift by Stephen King, limited edition from PS Publishing




Life-O-Matic - Breakfast from Blackeyed Cat on Vimeo.


Short trailer/clips have started to be released for the film version of Paul’s story Life-O-Matic, which you can watch above and below.


LifeOMatic - Neighbor from Blackeyed Cat on Vimeo.


Life-O-Matic - Hear's Candy from Blackeyed Cat on Vimeo.

And news has also reached us that the film has won Best Horror Short in the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards (below). Needless to say, Paul is delighted!


Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards Winner 2017 - Life-O-Matic




Swansea Horror Con cancelled


Disappointing news now that Swansea HorrorCon (above), which Paul was due to attend as a guest, has been cancelled by the organisers. However, it has just been announced that Paul is a guest again this year at Edge-Lit 6 on 15 July, where he will be on a couple of panels and will also be launching his new themed collection Death (below, and see last month’s news for details). You can book your ticket for that event and see the schedule by clicking here.


Death is Coming: Death, by Paul Kane, from Sinister Horror Company




Jack Reacher, No Going Back


On to our Guest Writer slot next, and do we have an excellent one for you this month! Bestselling author of the Jack Reacher books (which have been turned into major films starring Tom Cruise as the titular hero – the latest being Never Go Back, above) has edited another anthology which teams up famous crime characters created by the likes of Val McDermid, Peter James, Charlaine Harris and David Morrell: Match Up (below).


Match Up, edited by Lee Child


We’re fortunate enough to have an extract by Lee, from a story by Lee and Kathy Reichs (author of the ‘Bones’ series, which was turned into a TV show, below). To read this – which features Jack Reacher himself – simply click here


David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel - Bones




Olympia, London


Photos now from the IMATS Event Paul was a guest at, for the Hellraiser reunion, including arriving at Olympia to see the sheer scale of the convention (above and below) 


Exhibitors at IMATS, London


Exhibitors hall at IMATS, Olympia


SFX make-up demonstration at IMATS, London


And below you’ll find pictures from the panel itself, including the standing room only audience, the whole panel (with Paul on the far left), Chatterer Cenobite Nicholas Vince, and make-up effects man Cliff Wallace both telling stories from their time working on the original Hellraiser. A fantastic day was had by all!


Hellraiser Panel at IMATS, London, with Bob Keen, Geoff Portass, John Cormican, Nicholas Vince, Paul Kane, Cliff Wallace, Paul Davis


Audience for Hellraiser Panel, IMATS, London


IMATS Hellraiser panel. L to R: Paul Kane, Stuart Conran, Nicholas Vince, Cliff Wallace, John Cormican, Geoff Portass, Bob Keen, Paul Davis


L to R: Stuart Conran, Nicholas Vince


L to R: Cliff Wallace, John Cormican




Back: A.K. Benedict. Front: Kate Walshe


Paul and Marie were also at author AK Benedict’s 40th Birthday Party Masked Ball, overseen by the Goblin King who was DJ-ing. Photos above and below.


Masked partygoer


DJ for the evening was The Goblin King himself



Before, by Paul Kane


A late news update this month, for reasons we’ll come to at the end. But for now, the big news is the reveal of not one, not two, but three covers for forthcoming Kane books. The first, as reported by the Ginger Nuts of Horror site here is Paul’s sizable novel Before from Grey Matter Press (above) which is due out at the end of June – with a tentative launch expected at Swansea HorrorCon where Paul is a guest. To find out more about this one, click on the publisher site here or the Facebook page here. Paul is also in the latest issue of newsstand magazine HorrorVille (from the makers of SFX and Total Film) talking about this new book (below).


Horrorville magazine


Paul Kane interview, Horrorville magazine


Second cover reveal of the month was for Paul’s eagerly anticipated new collection from Cycatrix Press, Disexistence (below) due out anytime.


Disexistence, by Paul Kane


This from the official PR: ‘A stranger wanders through a town with no memory of how he got there, while another man’s terror of the written word has serious ramifications. A very special multi-coloured coat has the power to beguile young children, but a secret box that seems to contain the answer to every question is all one particular grown up desires. And while one woman survives in a world where dreams are outlawed, others dream of living paintings, of being free from persecution – and of Death’s long shadow… The much-anticipated new collection of horror and dark fantasy tales from award-winning and bestselling author and editor Paul Kane (The Butterfly Man, Blood RED, Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell), this book contains a trilogy of stories from his popular Hooded Man mythos, six brand new tales and an introduction from New York Times bestselling and award-winning author Nancy Holder (Crimson Peak, The Rose Bride, Wicked series). In here you will find stories that try to unravel the mysteries of our existence, and indeed our very Disexistence.’ And you can order the book from the publisher site here.


Death, by Paul Kane


Last, but not least, we have the cover reveal of Paul’s themed Death collection – again, as reported by Ginger Nuts here – published by Sinister and due to launch at Edge-Lit in July. And the official PR for this one: ‘One man seeks desperately to understand what lies beyond, by searching for a particular face – while another returns to fight crime in his old city. Someone at the end of their tether contemplates the many ways in which to end it all, even as someone else defies all the laws of nature to come back from the grave. And as a deadly disease threatens to wipe out the population, four legendary figures meet for a final drink in a pub at the end of the world… It’s a subject not many of us want to talk about, but will all have to face at some point, and the characters in this very special collection do so in various ways: whether it be as a person, a choice, or even as revenge. So join award-winning and bestselling author Paul Kane (Monsters, Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell) as he takes a look at Death from every angle. Complete with the script for the play version of ‘One for the Road’, an introduction from the author of The Beauty of Murder and Jonathan Dark or The Evidence of Ghosts, A.K. Benedict, and a stunning cover by Les Edwards, this is one book you’ve all been dying for.’

You can pre-order the Kindle version of the book by clicking here, with more ordering details coming soon.



Haunted Nights, edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton


The covers for two anthologies Paul is in have also been revealed this month. The first is a co-HWA/Blumhouse/Anchor Books release, Haunted Nights edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton (above and below). Out this Halloween, it features stories by the likes of Garth Nix, Jonathan Maberry and Kelley Armstrong, as well as Paul’s tale ‘The Turn’. You can pre-order here.


Haunted Nights, edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton


The second anthology is Between the Tracks (below), edited by Steve Dillon and featuring the likes of Clive Barker, Christopher Golden and Ramsey Campbell. You can order that one here, which features Paul’s tale ‘When Push Comes to Shove’.


Between the Tracks, Tales from the Ghost Train - edited by steve Dillon




Steph Broadribb


We’re thrilled – in more ways than one – to welcome our Guest Writer this month, the wonderful Steph Broadribb (above) with an extract from her debut novel Deep Down Dead. The book, which introduces us to kick-ass Florida bounty hunter Lori Anderson, is out now through Orenda and you can get a taste of the action by clicking here.  


Deep Down Dead, by Steph Broadribb


Orenda Books




The Rot, by Paul Kane. Audiobook, narrated by Chris Barnes


Paul and Chris Barnes have received yet another glowing review for the audio-book of The Rot, this time by the AudioBook Reviewer. Here’s what they had to say: ‘Adam is a fighter pilot chosen to test a self-sustaining skin suit. It re-circulates all his water and waste so the wearer doesn’t need to eat or drink. It was meant only to be worn for one week, but when the world falls apart, it is the only thing keeping Adam from the rot that is infecting the world. Some contagion has entered the world, turning men and women into mindless and ultra-violent madmen. But it isn’t just the people, it’s all things. Buildings and machines are decaying, even the very ground is disintegrating. Adam may be the only man left untouched, protected by his suit. The cause is unknown and he may be the only one left to find a stop to the destruction, if he can survive.

There is a feeling of I Am Legend by Richard Matheson. The bleak separateness of the landscape and everyone out to kill him. Has the world simply evolved and now Adam is the outsider, trying to hold onto the past. The listener doesn’t know. One might be tempted to call this a zombie novel, but the infected people are not dead, just maddened by the disease, though they do act like them. The dark hopelessness of the novel is quite compelling and fits a certain genre. It is a quick listen, but feels full, the world well described and Adam well developed as the reluctant last man on Earth. The novel is performed by Chris Barnes. He does an excellent job, catching Adam’s moods and intense loneliness. He does more than simply read the book, he acts, and it is well done. There are few other character voices, but they are done well and easily differentiated. Excellent. The Rot fits into several categories at once: Zombie, Sci-Fi, Horror and Dystopia. It is a dark novel with literary overtones and will appeal to this audience well. An excellent book that leaves the listener thinking about it long after its completion. Recommended!’

You can read the full thing here.



Wheat-Ex - LifeOMatic product


Above and below are some of the product designs for the movie version of Life-O-Matic, which is now finished and heading off to film festivals on both sides of the Atlantic. You can keep up to date on all the announcements for this one by joining the Facebook page here.


Pain-Away Extra - LifeOMatic product


Grime-A-Gon - LifeOMatic product




PCA-ACA convention - event brochure


Below you’ll find a photo of Carl Sell reading his paper on the Hooded Man novels at the Popular Culture Association – American Culture Association Conference in San Diego last month. The paper was well received and has even led to the books being taught on one tutor’s curriculum.


Carl Sell reading a paper on The Hooded Man novels by Paul Kane at PCA-ACA




The Kettering Incident


Last month Paul reviewed the series that is being called ‘Australia’s answer to Twin Peaks’, The Kettering Incident, for Sci-Fi Bulletin. You can read his thoughts on this by clicking here.



Hellraiser Anthology, Vol. 1


Hellraiser Anthology


Paul also did a review for Sci-Fi Bulletin of the brand new Hellraiser Anthology Vol. 1 published by Seraphim (above) which you can read here.


Leviathan - The Story of Hellraiser and Hellbound: Hellraiser II, by Christian Sellers and Gary Smart


But that’s not the only Hellraiser news for this month. As announced by the team who brought you the Leviathan documentary, there will be an accompanying book to go with it (above) and Paul has written the afterword for it.


IMATS - International Makeup Artist Trade Show


Paul will also be at the massive three-day IMATS convention this coming weekend (above), which will feature panels on Pirates of the Caribbean and Alien Covenant (below).


IMATS London 2017 - Alien: Covenant


He’ll be a part of the Hellraiser 30th Anniversary Panel on the Sunday at 4pm, alongside Bob Keen, Geoff Portass, John Cormican, Cliff Wallace and Nicholas Vince. You can find more details about this here and here.



Habit poster


Speaking of events, in April Paul & Marie were at the cast and crew screening of Habit – directed by friend of the SW site Simeon Halligan. Based on the critically-acclaimed novel by Stephen McGeagh it stars Jessica Barden (Penny Dreadful), Elliot James Langridge (Hollyoaks) and Roxanne Pallett (Emmerdale).


Habit - director Simeon Halligan


Habit screening, Printworks Manchester




The Queen Mary, StokerCon 2017



Registration sign, StokerCon 2017


Corridor, The Queen Mary, StokerCon 2017


But of course that wasn’t the only event Paul & Marie attended recently, which brings us to the reason this news update is late. They’ve just got back from attending StokerCon in Long Beach, California, where they were on board the beautiful Queen Mary (above). Here are just a few of the photos, including having a look around the neighbourhood, Paul enjoying the sun on deck, and Paul and Marie with Guest of Honour Peter Crowther of PS Publishing (all below).


Long Beach, California


Paul Kane relaxing on the Observation Deck bar aboard the Queen Mary, Long Beach


L to R: Pete Crowther, Paul Kane, Marie O'Regan


Below you can see the couple celebrating at one of their tenth anniversary dinners, this one with the Crowthers and the Smiths – photo by Paula Grainger.


L to R: Michael Marshall Smith, Pete Crowther, Nicky Crowther, Paul Kane, Marie O'Regan and Nate Smith


Anniversary cake


And here are just a few of the interviews and panels they attended, the Mike Flanagan (director of Oculus and forthcoming Gerald’s Game) interview, creator of Game of Thrones George R.R. Martin’s interview, and the horror panel with (L-R) Peter Atkins, Peter Crowther, Stephen Jones and Michael Marshall Smith.         


L to R: Rebekah McHendry, Mike Flanagan


L to R: Leslie Klinger, George R.R. Martin


L to R: Pete Atkins, Peter Crowther, Stephen Jones and Michael Marshall Smith


Finally, here are photos of Paul and Marie at the Stoker Awards Banquet on the Saturday evening. Expect a full gallery of photos very soon…


StokerCon 2017 banquet


Paul Kane and Marie O'Regan




Paul Kane - Nailbiters launch event at Derby Quad. With Paul Finch.


We begin this month with photos from the dark crime event in Derby at the Quad a few weeks ago, incorporating the launch of Paul’s new book Nailbiters (above and below). This includes both Pauls doing readings, an interview, a Q&A session and then signing books for people afterwards. There was a great attendance and everyone had a wonderful time!


L to R: Paul Finch, Paul Kane


Paul Finch


Paul Kane


L to R: Paul Kane and Paul Finch


Paul Kane


L to R: Paul Kane, Paul Finch


Copies of Nailbiters, by Paul Kane


Paul Kane signing copies of Nailbiters


Nailbiters, by Paul B. Kane


The Opportunity by Paul Kane


Photos have also been cropping up of the book arriving at people’s houses, including Helen Brannigan, Gavin Kendall and the director of The Opportunity, Lewis Copson (all below).


Nailbiters by Paul B. Kane, The Opportunity DVD


Nailbiters by Paul B. Kane


Nailbiters by Paul B. Kane, with The Opportunity DVD and director Lewis Copson


If you couldn’t make the Quad event, you can still buy the limited hardback and trade paperback book here or as a Kindle here.



The Coroner


But that wasn’t the only time Paul was out and about last month. He also attended an evening with Sally Abbott (creator of the highly successful show The Coroner, above) at MediaCity, organised by the Writers’ Room – and you can see photos from that one below.


BBC, Media city, Manchester


BBC Writersroom, in conversation with Sally Abbott


Sally Abbott


BBC building, Media City, Salford Quays, Manchester




Paul Kane, Guest at Swansea HorrorCon


Paul is delighted to announce that he will be a guest at Swansea HorrorCon at Swansea Leisure Complex, Oystermouth on 1-2 of July. It is likely to be the first appearance/launch of his new novel Before.

To book your tickets and see a list of the other Guests – which includes Kane ‘Friday the 13th’ Hodder and Bond Girl Caroline Monro – click here.



Tattletale, by Sarah J. Naughton


We have an absolutely amazing Guest Writer for you this month of April, in the shape of Costa shortlisted author Sarah J. Naughton. We’re very lucky enough to have a lengthy extract from her first adult novel, the excellent thriller Tattletale (above and below) published by Trapeze, which you can read here. With special thanks to Sam Eades for all her help.


Tattletale, by Sarah J. Naughton




Shadow Casting by Paul Kane


Paul received his copies of the limited signed hardback – with remarqued audio – and trade hardback of Shadow Casting last month, and gorgeous they are too! You can see pictures above and below.


Shadow Casting by Paul Kane, introduction by Muriel Gray


Shadow Casting, the best of Paul Kane


Shadow Casting, the best of Paul Kane


Remarqued audio CD


Signed limited edition of Shadow Casting by Paul Kane.


You can also order the book directly from the publishers here, and from Amazon here and here.



Signing sheets for Night Shift, by Stephen King


Photos now of the signing sheets from the new PS edition of Stephen King’s Night Shift – designed by Dave McKean – that Paul and Marie signed last month. They provided an afterword to this, one of King’s most famous collections (see January’s news for more details) which you can order here.


Signing sheet for Night Shift by Stephen King; artwork by Dave McKean


Paul Kane signature


Signing sheet for Stephen King's Night Shift, artwork by Dave McKean




Life-O-Matic Poster, starring Joe Paulson


Two more variant posters have cropped up for the forthcoming film adaptation of Paul’s story ‘Life-O’Matic’ written and directed by Jim Phillips – this time featuring the two main stars, Joe Paulson and Christina Natividad (above and below).


Life-O-Matic poster, starring Christina Natividad




Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell artwork by Paul Bonner Jr


Finally, Paul was sent these tremendous original pieces of art based on Servants of Hell by Paul Bonner Jr last month (above and below). Needless to say, he was delighted!


Servants of Hell artwork by Paul Bonner Jr


And Servants itself has been reviewed by Night Owl Reviews, who gave it 5/5 ‘Top Pick’ status. This is what they had to say: ‘Imagine my delight and excitement over reading the novel Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell by Paul Kane. I am a fan of both Sherlock Holmes and the Hellraiser movies, and I do enjoy Clive Barker’s other works. I anticipated reading a story unlike any other known to either world…Strap yourselves in, Sherlockians, for our dear Holmes crosses paths with one of horror’s most infernal creatures: The Cenobites from Hellraiser fame. If you have ever wished for a book to bring together two famous characters – such as, say, a crossover of the Sherlock and Hellraiser fandoms – then this is definitely a book worth reading. It brings to life both worlds so skilfully and the two of them seem to mesh together so well. Sherlock and John are hired for a case of people mysteriously disappearing, and while Sherlock knows intuitively that the missing people will not be found alive, he doesn’t know exactly what happened to them.

So begins our favourite detective wearing disguises as he goes undercover, and underground, to find the missing people and/or discover what happened to them. It certainly has the makings of a good case for Holmes and Watson, and I found this book hard to put down as I kept reading and wanting to know what happened next. The characters are so interesting and I loved the way Mycroft and Mrs. Hudson added to the story so well. And I saw what the author did there when Watson observed that a scarred character (Lemarchand – and yes, that name!) who looked like a human “book of blood.” Ditto with “tortured souls.” …I was anguishing over what happened to Holmes and Watson – and then I was cheering on the both of them, as well as Mary (yes! Mary is in it!). So it was the focus being on my beloved characters that made me love this story all over again. This is most certainly a Sherlock book – despite the Prologue and the Epilogue…And it is most certainly a story that I enjoyed reading.’

You can order the book itself online here, here and at the publishers' site here.



Nailbiters event - with Paul Kane and Paul Finch


The big news for March is that the Nailbiters launch has been announced. A ticketed event at the Quad in Derby on the 18th, this will be an evening of readings, interviews a Q&A and book signing.


Nailbiters, by Paul B. Kane


This from the official PR: ‘Black Shuck Books PresentsWhen Paul Met Paul”. A night of crime and horror with Paul Kane and Paul Finch including the launch of Paul Kane’s new collection Nailbiters. Saturday 18th March, 7:00pm – 9:00pm. Join Black Shuck Books for an event looking at the crossover of two of the most popular literary genres, with two of the UK’s leading authors of crime and horror.’


Ashes to Ashes, by Paul Finch


The Opportunity DVD

Sunday Times bestseller Paul F will be doing an exclusive reading from his new Sergeant ‘Heck’ Heckenburg novel, Ashes to Ashes, while Paul K will be doing a reading of ‘The Opportunity’, the film adaptation of which will be included in the limited hardback of Nailbiters.   

To make sure of your place you can book your ticket directly through the Quad here.



Hooded Man, by Paul Kane


News now about the paper being delivered by Carl Sell on Arrowhead and the Hooded Man mythos. The paper will be presented at the Popular Culture Association’s National Conference next month in San Diego and will focus on the adaptation of the medieval world in these books. We’re hoping to have photos afterwards to be able to show you, so keep checking back.



Kong Skull Island, novelisation by Tim Lebbon


Returning as Guest Writer for the month of March is the very hard-working Tim Lebbon, who has not one but two books out at the moment from Titan – one being the novelisation of the new King Kong movie, Skull Island (above). The second is brand new standalone novel Relics (below) and you can read an exclusive extract from that one by clicking here.


Relics, by Tim Lebbon



Shadow Casting, by Paul Kane


Finally, news now that the limited and trade hardcovers of Shadow Casting have started shipping – and you can also order the book from Amazon here and here.



Life-o-Matic poster


The big news this month is about a brand new movie that’s been made based on Paul’s story ‘Life-O-Matic’ (above) which originally appeared in Estronomicon magazine back in 2009.

The film was adapted and directed by Jim Phillips, and stars Joe Paulson (Superstition, The Talk), Christina Natividad (Saturday Night Live), Chris Pearson and Portia Gregory. A couple of the variant posters are below.


Life-o-Matic Poster 2


Life-o-Matic Poster 3


The film has its own Facebook page which you can find here, and will be getting its own website soon. Keep checking back for more news.



Shadow Casting by Paul Kane, introduction by Muriel Gray


A glowing 9/10 review for Paul’s ‘Best of…’ collection Shadow Casting has appeared on the Hungarian website Cinegore here. But for those of you who don’t speak Hungarian, here is the translation courtesy of reviewer Zoo_Lee: ‘A few months ago I introduced you to The Rot, a post-apocalyptic novella from writer Paul Kane, which mixed the classic subgenre with some unique elements and twists. In the past we’ve received the majority of our foreign literature from Horrific Tales Publishing, however, after The Rot review, Mr. Kane sent us a press release of his latest book, titled ShadowCasting, which amongst many of his most successful stories also contains the story “Dead Time”, adapted for the Fear Itself series (as New Year’s Day). If I have to name a book with a similar structure to Shadow Casting, my closest guess from recent memory would be Clive Barker’s Books of Blood, mostly because of the different subgenres represented by the tales, spanning from horror to fantasy through dark humour…

It contains 12 stories altogether, and picking any of them as better or worse than the others would be a near impossible challenge. Still, just to list some of my favourites: “Shadow Writer” is immediately a good start, where the protagonist gets invited to interview his favourite horror author. However, his journey to the secluded master proves more and more menacing, and the meeting is about something much more than a simple interview. Another story, “Biorhythms”, is a prime example of body horror with its main character trying to get complete control over every single process and movement in his body, to handle them like everyday activities, and although he succeeds, controlling his body becomes much more challenging than he ever dared to imagine. Lastly “Men of Cloth” is a nice tribute to classic gothic cinema, featuring a family returning to the father’s old birthplace, an isolated, small village in England, of which his mother refused to speak; following his father’s death, they left for America during his early childhood. This wasn’t a coincidence as the family has a lot to learn about the strange, twisted local folklore, and the things it made the villagers do…

Of course, all the other stories are similarly unique, unusual, either paying tribute to a well-known subgenre, or twisting it beyond surreal (the only reason I didn’t place “A Chaos Demon is for Life” among the others above is because spoiling a single word of it would be a crime). Despite the different styles and structures, Kane’s writing remains on a consistent level through the stories, creating chilling, unnatural beings, sympathetic protagonists and surreal, comical situations with the same success… In summary, Shadow Casting only enforced my opinion based on The Rot, that Kane is one of the most promising modern authors, and I can only hope that sooner or later we can see some of his works on Hungarian shelves. For fans of the Fear Itself series, the book is more than worth it if only for the “Dead Time” story, but even for those who are not part of that fanbase, Shadow Casting is a very unique, high quality compilation, worthy of any horror reader’s attention.’


Remarques on CDs for limited edition Shadow Casting


And there was an important announcement from SST recently, about the fact that due to circumstances beyond their control the DVD of Confidence will not now be included in the limited edition of Shadow Casting. Instead, there will be an hour-long audio CD featuring two stories narrated by actor Phil Lunt, and with a unique signed remarque from Paul on the front of the disc (like the ones pictured above), to make it even more collectable. You can read more in the official press announcement here.



Behind Her Eyes, Sarah Pinborough


Paul was out and about last month, at the friends and family only launch of Sarah Pinborough’s new thriller from HarperCollins Behind Her Eyes (pictures above and below).


Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough, book launch


The book, as modelled by Sarah below, went on to become a No. 1 Sunday Times bestseller – and you can get your copy by clicking here.


Sarah Pinborough, author of Behind Her Eyes




Hekla's Children, by James Brogden


Our Guest Writer this February is James Brogden, with an exclusive extract from his new mass market novel Hekla’s Children (above). Paul was so impressed with the book when he was sent an advance copy from Titan that he said, ‘This novel marks Brodgen out as a new rising star’, a quote which appears on the back of the publication. To see what all the fuss is about, click here.



Lunar, by Paul Kane


Pictures of the mass market reissue of Paul’s Lunar out on the wild have been surfacing, including the above courtesy of Esther Mullings who commented: ‘This book by Paul Kane had me on a tense ride throughout, great main character and you feel his desperation. Yet again Paul has delivered a wonderful energy-driven horror that I will revisit. 10/10 for this fan!’


Lunar, by Paul Kane


While you’re waiting for the movie version, you can get your hands on a copy by clicking here or here.



The Rot, by Paul Kane


Another glowing recommendation now, this time by DLS Reviews for Paul’s novella The Rot (above). Here’s what they had to say: ‘Introducing Paul Kane’s novella we have fellow author, Tim Lebbon, who offers up an appetite-whetting four-page introduction in which he talks of his and our draw to apocalyptic fiction, how Kane’s offering takes us down a whole new path, and the careful balancing act at play within the novella. It’s a fabulously praise-filled foreword that sets the mood perfectly for the bleakness to come.

I use the word “bleak” but trust me, there’s a hell of a lot more to Kane’s novella than just a bleak apocalyptic vision where humanity is gradually reduced to nothing.  Yeah, it’s fucking depressing at times. Emotions are conveyed in the rawest, most delicate and damaged of states. Yet at times there’s also the beginnings of hope – clawing at the grit and grime – attempting to break through. There’s so much honest-to-god humanity within the pages – you feel crushed and cut down, only to be resuscitated and nursed to some iota of health…at which point the incessant cycle starts up again. The story itself is written via our protagonist – Adam Keller’s recorded version of events, recalled over the three months following the outbreak to where he is now. Undoubtedly one of the novella’s key strengths is the prose of this first person narrative. It helps deliver that much-needed human element. There’s an honesty to the dialogue. A believable voice. It pulls you in – putting you behind Keller’s eyes and inside the character’s head.

Essentially the story kicks off with a textbook post-apocalyptic setting. Our principal protagonist is flung into the thick of the end of the world, with violent chaos erupting everywhere and absolutely no idea what’s going on. The horror of it all comes hurtling in within these first few pages, with Kane unleashing scene after scene of barbaric violence to underline one of the principal symptoms of the disease. Indeed, aside from the “Rotting” element (which I’ll come to in a minute) the rest of the novella reads like a reasonably toned-down Crossed instalment merged with Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend (1954) along with a touch of Earth Abides (1949) and The Purple Cloud (1901). Yes there’s plenty of violence and adrenaline-pumping edge-of-the-seat action thrown in. But there are also layers of emotional turmoil, loss and longing in there. Our protagonist’s journey isn’t so much a character arc as it is a systematic deconstruction and then reconstruction of one man’s crumbling psyche.

Behind all of this, like an overshadowing and ever-present cloud of oppression, is the Rot. Its presence is a gradual decay. There are hints of things deteriorating, scattered through the early pages. And then suddenly the gravity of the Rot’s impact upon the world hits like a breezeblock to the face. Buildings are crumbling. Streets are caving in. Vehicles are breaking down. It’s like a malignant cancer, spreading throughout the world and destroying absolutely everything in its wake. Even if you feel that you’ve already read more than your fair share of post-apocalyptic fiction, I urge you not to dismiss Kane’s offering to this otherwise overly saturated subgenre. The backdrop may be reasonably well-trodden ground, but it’s with the depth of characterisation, the voice given to our protagonist, the purpose given to each and every one of the secondary characters that Kane introduces, and the magnitude of the emotional warfare at play, that the novella stands taller than the majority of tales it rubs shoulders with. A veritable masterclass in emotion-rich post-apocalyptic fiction.’

You can read the full review here.

And you can order the book in hardback on Amazon here, here, and on Barnes and Noble here, or the Kindle edition here and here



The Disease, by Paul Kane


Comic news now, and Paul’s first ever one – The Disease – published by Hellbound Media, has been nominated for a Ghastly Award in the one-shot category, alongside the likes of Joe Hill’s Locke & Key. You can see a full list of the nominees here and cast your vote here.

You can also buy the comic direct from the publisher here.



Between the Tracks, Tales from the Ghost Train


Short story news, and Paul’s ‘When Push Comes to Shove’ will be included in the forthcoming anthology Between the Tracks, edited by Steve Dillon and including such luminaries as Clive Barker, Ramsey Campbell and Christopher Golden. More details as and when.



Starburst Bookworm Podcast


You can now listen to the Starburst Bookworm podcast which was recorded live at Sledge-Lit last December and features Paul, Stephen Volk and Gavin Thorpe. Just click here to be thoroughly entertained.


Last but not least, regular visitors to the site will know that February is Paul’s birthday month, so we’re sure you’ll join us in wishing him a very happy one this year!



Nightshift by Stephen King, art by Dave McKean


A very Happy New Year, and what better way to move into 2017 than with news that Paul and Marie have been asked to to write an afterword for the gorgeous hardback edition of Stephen King’s famous collection Night Shift (above), due to be published by PS soon. 


Graveyard Shift, Stephen King


Night Shift, as well as being a milestone in the genre, was of course King’s first collection. It gathered together many short stories that would go on to be adapted for film and television, including Graveyard Shift (above), The Lawnmower Man, Sometimes They Come Back (below), The Mangler, Children of the Corn (also below)…


Sometimes They Come Back, Stephen King


Children of the Corn, Stephen King


…and one of Paul’s particular favourites – the Emmy-winning adaptation of Battleground by Richard Christian Matheson for the Nightmares and Dreamscapes TV series (starring William Hurt, below).


William Hurt, starring in Battleground, adapted from the story of the same name by Stephen King


This new edition of the book features superb cover art and internal illustrations (below) by none other than Dave McKean – who visitors to the site might remember provided the covers for Paul’s two RED books (the third of which is coming later this year, Deep RED).


Night Shift, Interior artwork by Dave McKean


Night Shift, interior artwork - Jerusalem's Lot - Dave McKean


Night Shift, interior artwork, Dave McKean


To pre-order your copy, visit the PS Publishing website by clicking here.



Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell, Paul Kane


There have been more mentions for Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell in various ‘Best of 2016’ listings, including at The Tattooed Book Geek (above) here, The Grim Reader here, Dark Musings here, Pop Shifter here, a double mention in novels and horror on ebookwyrm here, and an international mention at Horreur Quebec here.


Books of the Year


In addition, the book was presented with an SFSF Social ‘Skadi Award’ for Best Novel in their year’s round-up.


 As always, you can keep up to date with all reviews, interviews and announcements on the Servants Facebook page here and you can order the book itself online here, here and at the publisher's site here.



Defender, by G X Todd


The first Guest Writer of this year is GX Todd, whose stunning debut novel Defender (above and below) has been called ‘worthy to take its place alongside The Stand in the canon. An absolute gem of a book’ by John Connolly and ‘compelling, suspenseful, and altogether extraordinary’ by Lee Child. You can read an exclusive extract and see what all the fuss is about for yourself simply by clicking here.


Defender, G X Todd




Disease, by Paul Kane and Pawel Kardis


Finally, a review of Paul’s comic The Disease (above and below) has appeared at Kult Creations. Here’s what they had to say: ‘This is a glossy, serious and professional product that wouldn’t look out of place coming out of some big American comics company… It belongs to the long horror tradition of “body horror”, where someone’s very body is invaded and subsumed (Cronenberg’s The Fly for example) – in short, where your body becomes… monstrous. It’s no secret that “body horror” is so disturbing because it’s a metaphor for disease. Here the metaphor is stripped away and Kane just goes for the visceral horror of the tale of a man overtaken by a terrible illness that warps his body. This probably wouldn’t be as effective (and infecting) as it is without Kardis’s shocking, photo-realistic painted art. No word of a lie – this is as good as anything produced by Alex Ross. He is as confident depicting the beauty of the semi-naked female form as he is the contents of a toilet bowel! His work is both hideous and gorgeous at the same time. Not for children or the faint hearted. If you care about comics as a medium for storytelling, do yourself a favour and pick this up.’


The Disease, by Paul Kane and Pawel Kardis


You can read the full thing here and buy the comic from Hellbound Media here.




Current news can be viewed here

2016 news can be viewed here

2015 news can be viewed here

2014 news can be viewed here

2013 news can be viewed here

2012 news can be viewed here

2011 news can be viewed here

2010 news can be viewed here

2009 news can be viewed here

2008 news can be viewed here

2007 news can be viewed here

2006 news can be viewed here

2005 news can be viewed here

2004 news can be viewed here

2003 news can be viewed here


© Paul Kane 2003-2018. All rights reserved. Materials (including images) may not be reproduced without express permission from the author.