Daily Archives: November 12, 2015

#31ZombieAuthors – Day 5 Interview – Perrin Briar – Three Zombie Series and Counting

Hello 3.5 readers.

One of my favorite parts about the #31ZombieAuthors interview series was that it allowed me to talk to writers from all over the world, like Perrin Briar, all the way in Jolly Old England.

Alien Jones’ space phone can reach anywhere in the universe, so Old Britannia wasn’t a stretch.

Perrin is a prolific author, with a number of awesome zombified series. He told me all about it on Day 5.

Bookshelf Battle

perrin briar

FIND THIS ZOMBIE AUTHOR ON:

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My guest today is Perrin Briar, the prolific British author behind a number of zombified book series, including:

Blood-Memory-Complete-Season-Small

Blood Memory – Jordan, who’s suffering from a six year gap in his memory, leaving him with no recollection of how a zombie outbreak started, joins the crew of the ship, Haven, but a shipwreck complicates matters.  The crew will have to leave the safety of the sea and step out onto land, where zombies aren’t the only monsters they’ll have to face.

Z-MINUS-High-Resolution-Book-1-Small

Z-Minus – Infected by a zombifying virus, a father decides to use his last hours of life to get his daughter to safety.

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Swiss Family RobinZOM –  A send-up of the 1812 classic novel authored by Johann David Wyss, now with zombies!

Previously, Perrin has written for BBC radio, and worked in the production and development departments…

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Undesiredverse: Wanted – Chapter 9

Alien Jones to the rescue.

Alien Jones to the rescue.

I ran out onto the roof top.  Casinos.  Hotels.  Strip clubs.  They all lit up the night sky with illuminated billboards, each more tacky than the next.  The only lights I wanted to see were attached to my ride. 

They were nowhere to be seen.

“You’re fired,”  I said.

“Oh good,”  Jones said into my ear.  “Now I can sue you for all that backpay you owe me.”

“I ask you to do one thing!”

“Relax,”  Jones said.

A dozen shai warriors poured out of the door.  Serious players, decked out in battle suits, packing some serious heat.

“So boys,”  I said as I threw up my hands, “Don’t suppose there’s anyway we could talk about this?”

“Yes, Mr. Voss,”  a voice called up from the stairwell.  “Let us talk about this.”

A cane topped with a diamond the size of a grapefruit popped out of the door.  It was followed by a man wearing a pair of sunglasses that were way too big for his face.  He sported a ridiculous black pompadour, so big that it almost looked like a creature of some kind was taking a nap on his head.  Three golden chains dangled from his neck. 

His suit was blood red and a leopard skin cape was draped over his shoulders.  His left hand was robotic.  He used it to straighten his yellow tie.  I spotted some nasty looking burn scars on the left side of his face.  The hand, the marks, it was a safe assumption he’d been set on fire at some point in his life, though whether it had happened by accident or on purpose I had no idea at the time.

“Good day,” the man said.  He switched his cane to his robotic hand and extended his right.  I shook it.

“And you are?”

“Oh pardon me,”  the man said.  “Fitzwalla.  Chazz Fitzwalla.  It’s a delight to meet you, Mr. Voss.  I’ve been cleaning up so many of the messes you’ve left behind for so many years now why, it feels like we’re old friends already.”

“You’re the Cabal’s consigliere,”  I said.  “The brains behind the Grondi Rebus.”

Fitzwalla tapped a finger on the side of his nose.

“IF…”

Fitzwalla really put an emphasis on that “if.”

“IF, the organization known as, ‘the Cabal’ were real AND if it indeed it were headed by an individual known as, ‘the Klapnar di Grondi Rebus,’ and said being did in fact have an advisor referred to as a ‘Consigliere’ then yes, Mr. Voss, I suppose if all those ifs were to come together, I suppose that Consigliere would be me.”

He smiled, flashing me a glimpse of his big pearly whites, with the exception of one gold tooth.

“But,” he continued.  “That would be a lot of ifs.”

“Maybe I should just go if myself,”  I said.

Fitzwalla snickered.  “It appears you already have.”

He stretched out his arms and took a deep breathe of the crisp air.

“Ahhh, Malostet,”  he said.  “Don’t you just love it?”

“Like I love an exotic venereal disease,”  I replied.  “Can you just kill me and get it over with already, or are you trying to bore me until I throw myself off the roof?”

“You’re funny,”  Fitzwalla said as he pointed a finger at me.  His ring finger was covered with a glistening emerald.  “Kill you?  Oh no, Mr. Voss, you are mistaken.”

I wasn’t buying it.  I knew he was winding up to lead me on somewhere.

“In fact, there’s been a number of mistakes on your part, Mr. Voss…”

“Oh please,”  I said, sarcastically.  “Do enlighten me.”

“I will,”  Fitzwalla said.  “The Cabal.  An organization so vast, so mysterious, so intriguing, so wildly powerful that it allegedly permeates every aspect of life in the Undesiredverse.  Politicians.  Businessmen.  The media.  All dangling from the so-called Klapnar’s hands like so many puppets on strings.  Why, the very notion is clearly preposterous.”

“Clearly,”  I said.

“You’ve been suckered in by fairy tales if you think we actually exist, Mr. Voss,”  Fitzwalla.  “That was your first mistake.  Your second mistake was that if you’re not able to shake yourself from the bad idea of believing in us, that you’re not able to at least go about your day in peace and pretend as if we don’t exist, as the vast majority of Undesireverseans prefer to do, filing us away in that deep dark corner of their brain where they store the boogeyman and other things that go bump in the night.”

“Did you rehearse this or does bullshit come natural to you?”  I asked.

He ignored the question.  “Mr. Voss, you believe this fantasy organization is responsible for murdering your family and while I do sympathize with your loss, I must say your third mistake was taking that unfortunate incident much too personally.  Business, as they say, is business.  Most beings either understand that or begrudgingly accept that but you?  You have been a thorn in the Klapnar’s backside for quite some time.”

“If he exists,”  I said.

Fitzwalla smiled.  “Now you’re catching on.”  He looked to the shai warriors and asked, “Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?!”

He paced about for a moment.  “You couldn’t let it go, could you?  You weren’t able to move on with your life.  No. You just had to hold a grudge. You bombed our operations.  Killed a number of our top operatives.  It seems to me that your third mistake was incurring the wrath of this massive conglomerate.  Tell me, Mr. Voss, do you remember a counting house on Salazon Deo?”

My heart sunk.  Now I knew where he was going.

“It rings a bell.”

“You blocked all the doors and set it on fire,”  Fitzwalla said.  “But you made another mistake that day, Mr. Voss.  We’ll call it your fourth.”

The Consigliere leaned in close and pushed his sunglasses up on his forehead to reveal that his left eye had been replaced by a glowing red robotic optic implant.

“You didn’t kill everyone that day,”  Fitzwalla said.

I shrugged my shoulders.  “I’m…sorry?”

“I’m not,”  Fitzwalla said.  “Not at all.  Whatever doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger.  You know, Mr. Voss…hmm.  Enough of this ‘Mr. Voss.’”

He put his arm around my shoulder.

“Can I call you Roman?”  Fitzwalla asked.  “I really feel like we have such a history, Roman, that we should be on a first name basis.  Do you mind?”

“Go for it, Chazz.”

“Clever,”  Chazz replied. “And that brings us to your fifth mistake, the one you just made moments ago, when you assumed that after all you have done that I’d merely just kill you.”

“You’re going to let me go?”  I asked.

“Not at all,”  Chazz answered.  “It has been quite some time since I have gotten my hands dirty, what with me holding an upper management position and all, but as soon as I get the Klapnar on the line, I’m going to volunteer for a special duty.  I’m going to personally torture you.  Slowly.  For days.  I’m going to engage the help of medical professionals to keep you alive longer just so I can torture you some more.  And just when you reach the point where you’ve had enough, where you can’t take it any longer, where you beg me for mercy…I am going to keep on going.”

“Well Jesus, Chazz,”  I said.  “Now who’s holding a grudge?”

“First thing’s first,”  Chazz said.  “Take all the hardware you’re packing in that infamous coat of yours and fork it all over.”

I didn’t move.

“Roman,”  came Jones’ voice in my ear.  I was the only one who could hear it.  “You should do as he says.”

Off in the distance, behind everyone’s backs, came a blinking light.  It drew closer and closer.

I reached into my coat.  All the warriors looked like they had itchy trigger fingers.

“Don’t try anything funny, Roman,”  Chazz said.  “You can see all the firepower I have at my disposal.”

“Start with the biggest one first,”  Jones said.

My double-barreled shot blaster.  It was strapped to my back.  I reached under my coat, unhooked it, and held it high over my head.

It wasn’t much to look at but it was in full view.  A Benson and Brandt 2900 Star Streaker.  Turd brown and basically a giant floating bread box with wings, it was the ride of choice for soccer moms around the turn of the thirtieth century.

And it wasn’t even mine.  It was a damn rental.

But I’d never been so happy to see it.  Good old Jonesy.  I saw his little green face in the cockpit.  He’d cut the engines and coasted in and since everyone was facing me, they didn’t notice my rescuer, or the big hook attached to a tow cable dangling from the bottom of the ship.

“Come on, come on,”  Chazz said as he grabbed my lapel and opened my beloved garment up.  “What else have you got in there?”

“You just made a mistake yourself there, Chazzy,”  I said.

“Oh, and what’s that?”

I cold cocked the Consigliere in the face with the butt of my shotblaster, knocked his gold tooth out, then raised my weapon again, holding each end up high in both hands just in time to be hooked and dragged up into the air.

“You touched my duster!”  I shouted.

As I dangled in the breeze like a freshly caught trout, the warriors took their shots, but Jones kicked the engines in.  They let loose with a roar and my pilot gunned it, tearing ass across the sky and forcing me to puke out everything I’d eaten that day.

My apologies to the tourists it landed on.

“God damn it, Jonesy!”  I shouted.   “I knew you were good for something!”

“Yeah yeah,”  came the reply in my ear.  “You owe me a smoodchix sandwich.”

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Undesiredverse: Wanted – Chapter 8

“Jonesy, I’m coming in hot!!!”

“What?”  my trusty pilot asked.

“GET YOUR ASS OVER HERE NOW!!!”

“Gadzooks, what did you do?”

I stormed into the harem.  Hanging from the ceiling by a steel rod was an ancient tapestry of the noted shai philosopher, Sufros.  I ripped it down, tore the rod off and shoved it between the door handles. 

Just in time.  The second goon wave banged on the door, shaking it furiously.  The prostitutes, er, I mean ladies, were aghast. 

“Which way out?”  I asked.

No answer.  They were all either too loyal to or too scared of their employers to say anything…except for one.  She was a lovely, turquoise skinned zeltu who either robbed a basketball store or was incredibly endowed.  A ruby was embedded in her forehead which unfortunately for her, was a symbol in her culture that she was considered to be from a low class, not a being but mere property to be bought and sold.  That meant her tongue had been cut out at birth, as she was meant to be seen, not heard.  Her thoughts and opinions were considered meaningless, which is too bad, because I bet she had a lot to say.

She pointed her tail over her shoulder toward the back left corner.

I grabbed her shoulders.  “I’d kiss you but I have no idea where you’ve been!”

I slipped a thousand credit chit.  Chump change I know but it was the least I could do.

Jones was still in my ear.  “Give me some mustard and throw a little smoodchix on that will you?”

“Are you shitting me?!”  I asked Jones. 

I introduced the door to my boot.  The reverberating pain in my foot told me the door was going to win.

 “Roman, we’ve talked about this,”  Jones replied.  “The world does not revolve around you.  You caught me while I’m ordering a snack.  As soon as I pay for it I’ll get there.  You’re not the only one with needs and right now I’m starving.”

“THEY’RE GOING TO KILL ME!!!”

Momentary silence on Jones’ end, followed by a, “Oh fine, I’ll be right there.”

Three more kicks.  It wasn’t budging.  Meanwhile, the door to the harem was made of less solid stuff.  It was buckling.  The goons would be through any minute.

I drew my hand cannon and was about to unleash hell on the lock when I felt a finger tapping me on the shoulder.  It was the mute zeltu hooker.  I stepped aside and watched as she slid open a panel, stared at it for an eye scan and…CLICK!  The door unlocked.

“Oh what the hell,”  I said as I grabbed her, dipped her, and gave her a passionate kiss.  She even pushed her bumpy tongue back into my mouth.  Of course she did.  I’m Roman Voss.

I ran up a flight of stairs.

“Jonesy!”  I shouted.

“What?!  I’m on my way!” 

“This is going to have to be a fly by,”  I said as I rounded a corner and headed up a second flight.

“Seriously?”

“They’re up my butt like fifty feet of colonoscopy cord,”  I said.  “They’ll blow you up if you land.”

“I’m putting in my application to Swanky Burger after this,”  Jones said.

BZZZZATT!  BZZZATTT!  You like my sound effects?  That’s what it sounded like when my pursuers unloaded their heaters on me.  They were horrible shots, but they were hot on my heels and laser blasts were flying over my head.

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Movie Review: Spectre (2015)

The name’s Battler.  Bookshelf Q. Battler.

And I’d like this review to be shaken, not stirred.

Aww who cares, only 3.5 people are going to read it anyway.

BQB here with a review of the latest James Bond movie, Spectre.

At the outset, let me just say this:

  1.  It wasn’t as good as Skyfall, but that’s only because Skyfall set the bar so high.
  2. But that being said, it was still pretty damn good.  A lot better than that Quantum of Solace nonsense.

I love James Bond.  Bond is the man every man wants to be.  I’d love to be able to charm the pants off of any woman I meet, beat the crap out of all my enemies and still make it to cocktail hour on time in a nice suit.

Sadly, that only happens in the movies.  Bond is so suave he can even charm top secret info out of hot enemy babes.  Meanwhile, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that one day I’ll get a woman to make a sandwich for me.  Damn it Bond, you probably get all the sandwiches you want, don’t you, you bastard?

Anyhoo – OBLIGATORY SPOILER WARNING.

It hasn’t been easy for Bond in the post-9/11 world.  Since that fateful day, as well as after various tragedies since, people have been a lot more aware of the fact that illicit intercontinental activities can bring about grave repercussions.

Suddenly, the white cat stroking caricature Bond used to face just doesn’t cut it anymore, not when we’re fully aware there are real monsters in the world.

Casino Royale got the message.  It was lost in Quantum of Solace, which involved a plot to steal water.  Sorry Bond, but we’re done with outlandish, cartoonish plots.

Skyfall gave the series a reboot, giving Bond a team of compatriots to work with – a new Q, a new Moneypenny, a new M, new colleagues all around.  And this is the first film where we get to see them all shine.

The plot?  Bond must infiltrate the evil underground organization known as Spectre and take it down.  Its operated by a sinister ne’er-do-well aptly played by Christoph Waltz.  Waltz provides a great performance – never too emotional, speaking matter of faculty about significantly evil doings.

Wrestler David Bautista STEALS the show.  It’s been awhile since we’ve seen a good Bond henchman.  I’m not talking about the main villain but a lackey, a number two, a guy who does the villain’s dirty work.  Oddjob is the last one I remember.

Bautista hunts Bond and even though your inner voice reminds you that it is Bond’s movie so of course he can’t die, this guy leaves you thinking Bond might just end up drinking that shaken martini in the sky.

He doesn’t.  Don’t worry.  I don’t think that’s a spoiler.  You all know Bond lives at the end of these things, right?  That’s why they’ve made so many of these movies.

Ralph Fiennes, having replaced Judi Dench as Bond’s boss, M, is at the helm in this movie.  You end up feeling for the guy.  He’s plagued by red tape and bureaucracy.  He has to chew Bond out for ignoring protocol and generating bad press, even though its obvious he understands that Bond’s unorthodox methods have saved the world from ruin time and time again.

It sucks to be management.

One criticism is that there is a whole scene where the villain spills the beans to Bond as to how his whole sinister operation works.  I kind of thought these movies were pushing to get past those tropes but oh well, you have to have some, right?

Oh and I should point out, the villain does have a white cat, but he doesn’t stroke it.  Progress.

STATUS:  Shelf worthy.  Worth seeing in the theater due to great stunts, fights, car chases, special effects.

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