HorrorAddicts.net 119, Jaq D. Hawkins

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Horror Addicts Episode# 119

Horror Hostess: Emerian Rich

Intro Music by: Valentine Wolfe

jaq d. hawkins | more machine than man | slasher movies

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68 days till halloween

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Black Bird by Kanoko Sakurakoji

Black_Bird_Vol_1Black Bird by Kanoko Sakurakoji is the story of a young girl named Maiso who is tortured by demons from a very young age. When she was little, a neighborhood boy protected her, but when he moved away, the demons had free reign. Now, she’s sixteen and the demon attacks have increased. Just when the demon attacks are at their worst, the little boy moves back, only now he is a gorgeous man.
Tall, dark, and handsome, Kyo, is her knight in shining armor. What’s more, when he’s around, the demons don’t bother her. It seems like a dream come true, until he tells her he is the head of a demon clan and plans to make her his wife.

Unbeknownst to her, Maiso is the Bride of Prophecy. Kyo tells her that all demons search their lives for her and are after her for one of three reasons:

1. To drink her blood and be granted long life.

2. To devour her, which ensures eternal youth.

3. Or to bed her and make her their bride, which makes thier entire clan prosper.

There is a touch of fetish eroticism as Kyo can lick Maiso’s wounds to heal her. He poses as her teacher, so there are several scenes where she has fallen and he “tends” to her wounds by bringing her into the classroom and licking her under her plaid, schoolgirl skirt.

bb4The series is a tale of courtship, demon attacks, and innuendo. You might ask where the title Black Bird comes from? When Kyo is in his demon form, his hair grows long and straight, he has black wings, and wears a mask that looks like a crow’s beak. At no time does he exhibit the “ugliness” of the other sorts of demons that attack Maiso daily. It was interesting to me that there seemed to be “classes” of demons. The kind that constantly flew around her are almost like spirits. They are transparent, can be tiny or huge, and usually bite at her neck or ankles. The other sort (like Kyo) look mostly like humans and are normally beautiful. When they change into their demon forms, they look more like dark angels rather than the scary, ugly, demons we’ve come to expect from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Horror Addicts might find the constant girly blushing of Maiso tiresome, but for those of you who enjoy a little innocent romance in your horror, you’ll love this. Sure, there are demon attacks, clan wars, and some sexy makeout sessions, but for the most part, this is a story about a young girl dealing with her ailment (demon attraction) and the fact that her boyfriend is a powerful demon.

The artwork in this manga is beautifully done and reminds me more of the Bride of the Water God in some places. It has a very traditional side, with men wearing long warrior robes and long hair tied in back, but it also shows these same males in modern street clothes.

news_large_blackbird18Later in the series, Maiso grapples with the decision to become Kyo’s bride and sleep with him, even though it may cause her death. There is big drama in whether they should sleep together or not, and when they finally do, if they should do it again and if she gets pregnant will she die. In fact, every time she experiences a pleasurable event with Kyo, the next thing you know, her life is in danger. It begs the question, is the Bride of Prophecy ever allowed to be happy?

Although this manga series is more romance than horror, I still enjoyed it immensely and thought it might appeal to those of you with more classic macabre tastes.

Manga Review: Book of Friends by Yuki Midorikawa

bokNatsume is an orphan who sees spirits called yokai. In Japanese folklore, Yokai are a class of monsters that are mostly portrayed as humans, but can shape shift into other forms. In Book of Friends, they are interchangeable as demons or spirits.

Not only can Natsume see them, but he has been tortured by them all his life. One day, Natsume meets a demon named Nyanko who is trapped in a lucky cat statue. Nyanko can also change into his natural form which is a giant cat three times the size of Natsume. It’s pretty scary when he stands over Natsume while he sleeps, wondering if he should eat him. Gives new meaning to waking up with a cat on your chest!

Nyanko tells Natsume his grandmother used to play games with demons. She saw the supernatural too and for reasons he is yet to understand, she locked hundreds of demon promises in a book called the Book of Friends. Whoever owns the book may call the demons and they have to obey their orders. Nyanko follows Natsume and kind of helps him because he wants the book himself to control demons. Natsume tells Nyanko he can have the book when he dies.

Just like any good hero, poor Natsume doesn’t want to own demons. He just wants to get rid of them so they stop trying to kill him. By calling the demon’s name, stuffing the paper with their name on it in his mouth and clapping, the demon promise is released from the book and therefore, the spirit is free to live their life without fear. However, if Natsume tears, burns, or in any other way destroys the page with their name on it, the demon will tear, burn, or die in whatever means the paper did.

During Natsume’s quest to free the demons, he meets many different, strange spirits. They remind me of the minister creature at Beetlejuice’s wedding. One spirit he meets (and eventually frees) is Tsuyukami, the God of Dew. Once worshipped by many, he has only one worshipper left, an old lady with little time to live. As his worshipper’s dwindle, Tsuyukami gets shorter and smaller until he is now just the size of Snap, Crackle, and Pop. He peeks around Natsume’s bowl one morning and asks him to be free.

Each spirit is different and I enjoyed finding out who Natsume will meet next! Some are sweet, like the one who used to be a swallow bird, and just wants to see the man who picked her off the pavement and put her back in her nest, but others are horrifying. This is a fun read for anyone into demons or spirits.

This manga is available at Amazon, for Kindle or print.

Charla by Alex Beresford

13826052There are two things that really drew me to  Charla by Alex Beresford. The first item was a warning in the beginning of the book that said you shouldn’t read the demonic summoning at the end of chapter two. Because if you do an unwanted demon will come into your life. The second item was the first line of the story which was: “She always hated her daughter.” That got my attention right away how can a mother hate her daughter. Well Charla hates her daughter Amelie and has since day one. Amelie is now an adult and Charla has decided that its time for her to destroy Amelie once and for all. She does this by summoning a demon to ruin Amelie’s life.

Things start off slowly, the demon starts doing things like making noises, showing small glimpses of itself and then he causes Amilee to hurt herself. Little by little Amilee starts to lose her mind and then things get even worse. Amilee has no idea that her mother is the cause of all her problems or that her mother hates her, she gets some help from a friend but it may not be enough to stop the demon or her mother.

Charla is one disturbing read. It starts as psychological horror and then turns into a hard-core horror fest. This novel is excellent but it’s not for everyone. If you like romance don’t look here, if you like comedy, don’t bother, if you like sunshine and happiness forget about it. If you want a well written novel with fascinating characters and great pacing that keeps you on the edge of your seat, then Charla is for you.

I loved how the action builds slowly throughout the book and the atmosphere was creepy. There is one scene I enjoyed where Amilee and a friend uses a Ouiji board on a stormy night that was subtle but scary. You knew something was going to happen but instead of the author delivering a big scare he hints at things to come by having a spirit communicating with them and then showing a glimpse of something which makes Aimilee question her sanity. I felt the scariest part of the book was how Aimillee starts questioning everything she believes. There is nothing scarier then doubting your sanity and Charla really showcases that fear. I think even if you took the demon out of this book, it still would have been a great psychological horror story.

Another thing I loved about this book was the depth behind the characters. You kind of want to feel sorry for Charla after you hear her life’s story but then you see what she does to her daughter and you can’t. You also see Charla react to her husband wanting to divorce her and you can relate to her, but at the same time her attitude about how life has wronged her and how she reacts makes you hate her. Then there is Amilee who on the surface seems to have everything going for her, but then you see how insecure she is and you see how wrong her mother’s perceptions of her daughter is and you feel sorry for her.

If you read Charla your still going to be thinking about it long after your done with it. I think it’s a powerful novel that takes your worst fears and brings them to life. If I had a list of favorite horror novels Charla would have to go on it, but its not for the faint of heart.

Movie Quiz & Prize Contest : Lo

loAnswer ONE of these questions (that has not already been answered)
in the comments and be entered to win a free art print from HorrorAddicts.net.

  1. What is the new name that Lo gives Justin?
  2. What does Lo say when Justin says, “It’s Justin.”
  3. What is the tag line for Lo?
  4. What is the name of the Demon that took April?
  5. The director of Lo is Travis Betz. Name two other horror movies that Travis Betz directed.

Comment below to be entered into the drawing for a free horror art print by Emerian Rich.