Horror

Krampus Funko Pop! Arrives!

Chim Chim Cher-ee!

Funko Pop! has crafted perhaps the best thing I’ve ever wasted my money on–Krampus! If you don’t know who Krampus is, buy this book and you’ll learn all about him and help me pay my power bill. (I know, totally shameless.)

Other than the Living Dead Doll, there aren’t many Krampus things you can display on your desk or hide in your bedroom closet because you’re a 42-year-old man and you feel strange keeping it on your nightstand. But what Funko has done is magnificent. Here he is:

img_0006

First, this is one hefty hunk of plastic, potentially an interesting paperweight in the right hands or a spiked weapon in the wrong ones. He’s holding a ruten (i.e., birch switch to swat bad children), he has a basket (pictured below) chained to his back, and his long, snakelike tongue is slithering! And the best part?

img_0005  There’s a (presumably) naughty Funko Pop! kid in his basket! It doesn’t come out, but damn! What an awesome touch.

Once you hold this piece of plastic in your hot little hands you’ll say to yourself, “Wow! I wish I there were other Funko Pop! Krampuses I could buy.” Well, you’re in luck! Funko is out to squeeze every last buck out of you that you really should be stashing away into your kid’s college savings plan. Funko is producing 5 of them! There’s the basic one above, and which is the best of the lot, in my book. But you also have ….

A red “Chase” variant. Meaning you have a one-in-six chance of plucking one of these out of the box:

jpeg2

What this means is this one will run you a lot more than the basic one on eBay (curse you secondary-market sellers!). Now come the store exclusives! Hot Topic will have the following “Flocked” offerings. I honestly have no idea what that means. Is the fur designed differently? It’s not a fuzzy action figure, is it? I don’t know. But here’s the basic one, followed by the white “Chase” variant, meaning this one will cost even more than the Red “Chase” figure pictured above.

I love the white one and not just because he reminds me of my former father-in-law (and I adore the guy, who’s 6’4 tall). Hopefully the next time I swing by my nearest Hot Topic and feel awkward walking by all the sex toys (wait, that’s Spencer’s, never mind), I’ll see if they have the white critter.

Now, fifth and finally, is the FYE exclusive “Frozen” Krampus. (I pre-ordered one. Seriously. I’m 42 and I did that.)

jpeg5

I think he’s the bees knees. Now, I’m sure you’re thinking the following: Will this guy actually seek out all five of these Krampuses when he could just as easily donate the money he’ll use to buy them to the needy? Yes. But I’ll be sure to put one in the Toys for Tots bin, too. Thank you, Funko, thank you! Happy hunting to all, and to all a good night!

Advertisements

Krampus Funko Pop! Is coming!

With all this talk about deporting millions of children, and the possibility of thermonuclear war without Matthew Broderick saving the day, I figure, why not spread some pre-Christmas cheer? (Just in case earth is noting but a smoldering orb in a few short months.)

Funko, that is wonderful company that produces roughly 100,000 different bulbous-headed action figures and bobbleheads from decades of pop culture has finally gotten around to making a no-brainer of a Pop! Krampus!

And not the one from that movie from a few years ago. This is the Krampus that I and a continent of petrified European children conjure in our darkest dreams:

And the best part? There will be five of them!

Two of them are “flocked” and only available at a store called “Hot Topic,” which, honestly, sounds like a place where tween girls buy clothing. And to quote many a parole officer: Don’t go there. Unless you’re a tween buying Krampus for your geek parents.

The others are available at FYE (meaning they’ll cost $10 more) and, well, everywhere they sell items that are a complete waste of money but you need something for your desk anyway.

I cannot tell you how excited I am about this! (I truly need human companionship.)

Oh, and for you Elf fans, Christmas is coming early for you this year, too, unless Kim Jong Un decides to steal it by way of mutually assured destruction.

Win a $50 Amazon gift card!

TKN graphic

Greetings y’all! I’m doing what many unknown authors do: coaxing readers into reviewing my work for the chance to win something!

Here’s what’s what: Twelfth Krampus Night (Samhain Publishing) is my first-ever novella and I thoroughly enjoyed writing it. And it costs less than certain drinks at Starbucks!

So, if you’d like to win a $50 Amazon gift card, and a print copy of my first book, The Dark Servant, follow this Rafflecopter link to see how to enter, which you can do multiple times.

Also, and this it the REALLY IMPORTANT PART: If you review Twelfth Krampus Night and send the link to Erin Al-Mehairi, Publicist, at hookofabook@hotmail.com, and click you’ve done this on the Rafflecopter section for it, you will get 5 extra entries! Any questions, defer them to Erin as well. Click on the Rafflecopter daily to enter!

Dark servants clash!

Medieval maiden Beate, who’s grieving over the mysterious evisceration of her best friend, Gisela, must escape a Bavarian castle under siege by sadistic creatures.

Standing in her way—beyond towering walls and crossbow-toting guards—are Saint Nicholas’s demonic helper, Krampus, and Frau Perchta, a belly-slitting hag who prowls the countryside during First Night festivities to punish naughty teens. Beate wants out. Krampus and Frau Perchta want in, determined to breach the castle to snag their prey. Beate has no idea why these monsters want her, but she must use her wits to save herself from horrors both human and inhuman—lest she wind up like Gisela.

An Apocalyptic Interview with Hunter Shea

Tortures cover

Hunter Shea has had a slow summer. Normally he releases 12 books over a three-month span (or at least it seems that way), but this summer it’s only two: The Dover Demon, through Samhain Horror, and the book we’ll be discussing today, Tortures of the Damned, a novel, released through Pinnacle, about a doomed cluster of reporters forced to cover Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

I’m kidding (sort of).

TOTD ventures into post-apocalyptic thriller land, but I don’t think post-apocalyptic accurately covers things because the book begins pre-apocalyptic in a New York City suburb. Full disclosure: I’m not quite through TOTD, but I’m easily more than 70 percent done, and I’m digging it. Without spoiling anything, TOTD focuses on a loving family (mom, dad, four kids) and their resourceful neighbors hunkering down in a fallout shelter during some sort of chemical/bomb attack on the city/country/world? It’s hard to say at this point. I still don’t know what the hell happened! But when our intrepid heroes emerge from the bunker, they encounter what would be otherwise friendly city creatures—rats, dogs, Italians (I’m kidding! I’m Italian so I can make that joke)—gone berserk! Attacking and biting anything that moves!

What struck me as most scary was the book’s beginning, when New York City falls under attack. Hunter’s a New Yorker, and I’m from neighboring New Jersey, and we both experienced 9/11 somewhat firsthand simply because of our proximity to the attack. Naturally I was drawn to that upon reading TOTD and asked Hunter about how the worst terrorist attack on American soil impacted him and his writing.

Q: Were you in New York City on 9/11/2001? If not, where were you and what’s your most vivid memory of that day?

hunter-shea-photo

Hunter: I was at work in CT when the planes first hit. Once we heard on the radio that other planes were missing and the towers collapsed, I got in my car and sped home like the devil was on my tail. My house has a view of Manhattan, and we watched the smoke billowing with fighter jets screaming overhead. Friends and family all gathered there to watch the aftermath and wonder what was going to happen next. It was scary as hell. One of my best friends was working in the area and we couldn’t locate him. Phone lines were down. We thought this was just the start of the end of everything. And through it all, my kids were only 4 and 2 and we took turns keeping them away from it all so for them, it was just another day. The one good thing to come out of it was my friend checking back in 2 days later. I don’t think we ever breathed a bigger sigh of relief.

Q: How did 9/11 influence you in writing Tortures of the Damned?

Hunter: It taught me that we’re never, ever safe. We live in a very dangerous world. Living so close to a major target has changed my view of everything. I refuse to be lulled into a false coma of numbness, nourished by a steady diet of Kardashians, Donald Trump pretending he can be president and social media. There’s real danger around us all the time. The weapons unleashed in Tortures of the Damned exist. They’re on the black market right now. Any lunatic with enough cash can get their hands on them. A 9/11 event will happen in the U.S. again. Let’s all just hope Tortures of the Damned, as crazy as it sounds, isn’t a glimpse into a crystal ball.

Q: What is it about apocalyptic novels that appeals to both readers and writers? And with so many out there, how do you make them fresh?

Hunter: I think there’s a big obsession with them right now because we’re all uneasy. Despite the news telling us things are better, we’re not stupid. I grew up with air raid tests every month, the tail end of the Cold War all too real. What we see today makes me even more uneasy. Maybe we read and watch these stories to prepare ourselves. How would we react? What would we do? I know there are some folks out there that dig them because they hope it will happen. They picture themselves alpha male/female types that can take on the end of the world and spit in its eye. As a nation, I believe we’re at a glass half full period. You’ll know things are turning around when there’s a resurgence of what they called in the 80s tits and zits movies and stories with brighter endings.

As for making a post apocalypse story fresh, I think if you strip out zombies, you’re already ahead of the curve. You need to add a dose of hyper realism and a dash of the fantastic to grab the reader by the throat and scare the bejeeezus out of them.

Q: Do you have a favorite apocalyptic-themed novel? If so, which one and why?

Hunter: I absolutely love The Stand, especially the extended version. But my favorite is Robert McCammon’s Swan Song. Why? Because McCammon’s work in the 80s and 90s is some of the best horror fiction ever written in any time period. He can take an impossible premise and make it seem real. His writing is that good.

Question from Hunter to me: Now, since you live in Jersey, I have one question for you – is your go-bag stocked and ready and do you know where to hide your head when the shit hits the fan?

Matt: Whoa! What the hell is this?! I wasn’t expecting an inquisition! But to answer your question: I’d be screwed if the shit hit the fan right now. I don’t even have a 12-pack of bottled water in my basement. The closest I’ve come to witnessing first-hand the degeneration of society was the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, which knocked out power to my house for two weeks. I am ill-prepared. But after reading Hunter’s book, and given our country’s inexplicable apparent willingness to help Iran develop a nuclear bomb, I’ll be going to the grocery store tomorrow, and bottled water will be on the top of my list.

Tortures of the Damned tour logo