Archive for the ‘The Ash Angels’ Category

New Vamps, New Reviews

Supernatural Tales #22 is now available for sale! Featuring new fiction from some very fine writers, including my bud Michael Kelly. It also includes a new Felix Renn story called “Midnight Blonde.” It’s got vampires! And blondes! Order it now!

Also, the website Speculating Canada has reviewed all three Felix Renn chapbooks. Derek Newman-Stille, who runs the site, writes some of the most intelligent, thoughtful reviews I’ve ever read. It really says something when the reviewer points out something in your work that you’ve never seen before. And he likes it, too, which is definitely a plus!

Here’s an excerpt from his review of “Temporary Monsters”:

“Rogers’ first book in the Felix Renn series is fundamentally about change and impermanence and that makes it an exciting beginning to a new set of books. There is nothing predictable and the reader, like the characters, are placed on uncertain, shaky ground and feel the need to read through the book to have some sense of permanence to grasp onto at the end.”

Read the full review

From his review of “The Ash Angels”:

“This novel is truly terrifying because it deals with the lack of control that comes with depression; the lack of agency and internal chaos that comes when one is submerged in one’s own shadows. These monsters, although external in the novel, are internal for many people and serve as a reminder of the lurking dangers within one’s own soul and the slight change that is needed to plunge a person into darkness.”

Read the full review

From his review of “Black-Eyed Kids”:

“Good horror takes the familiar and makes it strange and embodies lingering fears, and this is certainly horror of the best kind. Rogers takes the image of innocence in our society, the child, and makes it something that evokes horror. He takes us into a realm of fear where even the most innocuous and normal thing can be an object of utter difference. And, he knows enough about fear to present his audience with the idea that sometimes people would rather die than live in continuing, ever-present fear. Fear of things is scary, but Fear itself is a terror that cannot be escaped from.”

Read the full review

The interview I did with Derek for Speculating Canada is still online, as well, and worth checking out, along with everything else on his excellent website.

The Post-Con, Post-Flu Report

I’ve been out of the loop the last couple of weeks. Wizard World Comic Con was great, our table was about ten feet away from Amy Acker’s, I met a lot of really nice people, sold a bunch of books, was even interviewed a couple of times. Unfortunately, during all of my glad-handing, I picked up an extremely unpleasant flu virus that hit me with five days of fever. Even now, a week later, I’m on the mend but still very weak.

It’s taken me a little while but I’m finally starting to catch up on things. Pictures from Comic Con are now available on my Facebook page. One of the two interviews I gave is now online, over at Press +1. The two best things about this con: seeing people come up to the table and pointing at one of the Felix Renn chapbooks and saying, “I already have that one!” And a couple of people who bought chapbooks coming back to the table later in the day to say they already started reading them and couldn’t put them down.

I found out that my Felix Renn story, “My Body,” and another short story, “The Candle” (that appeared in Shadows & Tall Trees), received honourable mentions in Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year, Volume 4.

I also came upon a review of the three Felix Renn chapbooks by Robert Morrish. Here’s an excerpt:

“…I’m usually not a fan of horror/comedy mash-ups. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say that I do enjoy horror-comedy when it’s done well, but more often than not I find attempts to combine the two genres fall flat. So when I say that I really enjoyed Ian Rogers’ three darkly humorous Felix Renn novelettes, understand that I’m a tough critic when it comes to these types of tales.”

Read the full review.

In other news, I have seen the almost-final draft of the cover artwork for my forthcoming ChiZine collection, Every House Is Haunted, and it is absolutely fantastic. Ever since my book was accepted, I’ve been imagining what my cover was going to look like, because the CZP covers are always so incredible. Artist Erik Mohr didn’t disappoint, and I think you’re really going to dig his take on haunted houses. I should be able to post it here in the next day or two, and the pre-order info for the limited edition hardcover should be online around the same time.

Dreadful Tales and The Man Eating Bookworm

The Burning Effigy event, “An Evening with the Authors,” went very well, despite the rainy weather and the Grey Cup game. Thanks to Monica for setting it up, and thanks to fellow performers Jeff Cottrill and Tobin Elliott for helping to make it such a great night.

Colum McKnight of DreadfulTales.com videotaped the readings and I’ve included links to mine below. In the first one, I read a short excerpt from “Black-Eyed Kids,” while in the second one I read from a new, unpublished Felix Renn story, “Out of the Blue.”

Jason Darrick has also done an incredible write-up of the night’s festivities. Be sure to check it out.

In other news, The Man Eating Book Worm weighs in with a review of “The Ash Angels”:

“…The writing is mature and as professional as anything being stacked on the “Bestsellers!” table at Chapters.

With The Ash Angels Ian Rogers did me a solid. He affirmed my observations from his first chapbook, that a new talent had entered the literary world. The story is told with the same confidence and maturity, assuring the reader that they are in competent hands.”

Read the full review.

Thanks to Dreadful Tales for recording the event, and to the Man Eating Bookworm for the excellent review! 

Reviews a-poppin’

There have been a lot of reviews of the Felix Renn chapbooks popping up lately.

Mary Rajotte over at Bloody Bookish had this to say about “Temporary Monsters”:

“Right from the 1st line, “The waiter got killed before he could drop off the bill”, which is so stark, it immediately plunges you into the heart of the action, readers are thrown into a world where monsters are the norm and the Paranormal Intelligence Agency (PIA) and the paranormal itself acts as a dangling carrot that entices both readers and Renn alike.”

Read the rest of the review at Bloody Bookish.

And she had this to say about “The Ash Angels”:

“From the very start, Rogers conjures up a darker more melancholy universe for Renn. Set against the backdrop of Christmas Eve, The Ash Angels is a darker, grittier read that adds more depth to Renn and continues to peel back the layers of the story that readers will undoubtedly be intrigued with the same way I was.”

Read the rest of the review at Bloody Bookish.

Meanwhile, The Ginger Nuts of Horror covered all three Felix Renn chapbooks in a single review, which is a first for me, and includes the first review of “Black-Eyed Kids.” Here’s some excerpts from the review:

On “Temporary Monsters”:

“A fast paced story, where the action kicks of from the word go and never lets up.”

On “The Ash Angels”:

“…this is a much quieter tale than it’s predecessor, however it still has the same great dialogue, great writing and snarky humour of Temporary Monsters. It was good to see such a different style of tale, it shows that Rogers is no one trick pony.”

On “Black-Eyed Kids”:

“This is a brilliant example of noir horror, chilling, thrilling, full of excellent dialogue, and a great cast of characters. Rogers has excelled in creating a truly chilling adversary in the Black Eyed Kids, these kids are creepy to the max.”

Read the full review at The Ginger Nuts of Horror.

There are more reviews coming down the pipe, as well as some interviews and other cool announcements that I’ll be able to tell you about soon.

Until then, if you have yet to check out the world of the Black Lands, Burning Effigy Press is currently offering a sweet deal where you can get all three Felix Renn chapbooks for only $20.

I’d also like to take a moment to once again thank everyone for their continuing support. The interest in this series has been overwhelming (and the hunger for a Felix Renn novel is voracious). If I could spend my days writing Felix Renn/Black Lands books, I’d be one happy cat. I don’t know if that will ever happen, but I do know that every time someone buys one of my stories, I’m one step closer to achieving that dream. It means a lot. So thank you!

Tattooed female slayers and their supernatural bad-boy boyfriends need not apply

I came home from work today to find an unexpected surprise: a double-header review of “Temporary Monsters” and “The Ash Angels” by Nick Kaufmann, author of the Stoker-nominated General Slocum’s Gold, and the Shirley Jackson Award-nominated Chasing the Dragon.

Here’s my favourite part:

Temporary Monsters dwells in the gray area between horror and fantasy. It is essentially an urban fantasy, or what urban fantasy was for a short time before it became synonymous with tattooed female slayers and their supernatural bad-boy boyfriends.

You can read the rest of the review over at Nick’s blog.

In other news, I sent off the final edits on “Black-Eyed Kids” this morning, and I expect to have the final layout and the cover very soon!

Jeffrey Thomas reviews “The Ash Angels”

Last year, Jeffrey Thomas, creator of the excellent series of Punktown books, posted a review of “Temporary Monsters” that had me spinning for days. Well, Mr. Thomas has gone and done it again with an equally wonderful review of “The Ash Angels.” Here’s an excerpt:

As much as I enjoyed the first Renn outing, I think I enjoyed this one doubly so. Renn’s personality seemed even more to the fore this time, his voice more bitterly humorous… It’s Christmas eve in snowy Tornoto, and the chilly isolation of the human soul is felt throughout — not least of all by Renn, who mourns the breakdown of his marriage. For a brief novella, there’s a lot of shading to Renn — the humor, the regrets, the resourcefulness — and a well-formed character will make you want to hang out with him again.

Read the whole review at Jeffrey Thomas’s website.

“The Ash Angels” reviewed by Simon Strantzas

Simon Strantzas, one of Canada’s premiere authors of weird fiction, has posted a review of “The Ash Angels”:

What can one say about “The Ash Angels”? The first sequel to “Temporary Monsters”, TAA take Rogers’s hero, Felix Renn, into quieter, more emotional territory. But don’t let that description fool you — Rogers’s dialogue is as sharp and funny as ever. He understands the rat-a-tat-tat language of the best noir, and uses it to explore the interpersonal relationships of his characters. The fact that “The Ash Angels” is a different beast from “Temporary Monsters”, and yet just as enjoyable, cements the proof that the Felix Renn character has a lot of life in him, and a lot of distance to travel. Which is good, as Rogers promises on his website many more adventures for the detective. That may be unlucky for Renn, but it’s oh so lucky for us.

It’s always great to get a good review, but it’s even better when the reviewer truly understands what the writer was setting out to accomplish. Mucho thanks, Simon!

“Angels” update and the third Felix Renn chapbook

My publisher has informed me that “The Ash Angels” will be going into a second printing. Mucho thanks to everyone who picked up a copy and helped make this possible. If you’re interested in snagging a first printing, you might still be able to get one from Horror Mall or, if you act fast, directly from the publisher.

The support for the Felix Renn/Black Lands stories has been truly overwhelming. I’m grateful to everyone who has bought one of the chapbooks, as well as the people who have taken the time to approach me at conventions and readings to tell me how much they enjoy the series, or to ask me when the next one will be out, or, better yet, when I will be getting to work on a Felix Renn novel.

I can tell you the novel is coming, once I get a couple of other projects off my plate, and as for the third Felix Renn chapbook, I expect to begin writing it within the next couple of weeks, for a September 2011 release. It will be called “Exhibition Loop.”

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What are the Black Lands?

The Black Lands is a dimension filled with supernatural creatures that lies next to our own. This alternate reality is the setting for a series of stories by Ian Rogers.

To find out more about the Black Lands, read the history.