A trio of reviews

The Eyes of Water cover image

So it’s Monday again, and the weather can’t decide whether it wants to be sunny or rainy so it’s flinging both at us. Never mind, at least there are a couple of new reviews of Spectral chapbooks for you to look at:

First up is regular reader Riju Ganguly’s assessment of Alison Littlewood’s The Eyes of Water, posted to his Goodreads account – you can find that one here.

Secondly, here comes a combined review from the good folks of Shock Totem Magazine of The Eyes of Water and Simon Kurt Unworth’s Rough Music, written by John Boden. You can read his thoughts here.

Don’t forget to order your subscription to this series of critically-acclaimed chapbooks – they often sell out well before publication and a subscription is the only way to make sure you get your copy (Paypal buttons down the right-hand side of this blog for your convenience). At the same time, why not also order a copy of the second Spectral Visions novella, John L. Probert’s The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine – to order, there’s a separate page (listed next to ‘HOME’ in the menu bar above), which gives you all the pertinent details. There aren’t that many left, so if you don’t want to be disappointed, order today!

Look forward to hearing from you!

The Crow’s Caw sounds out The Eyes of Water

The Eyes of Water cover image

Just a short post this morning, to let you all know about the latest review of Alison Littlewood’s Spectral chapbook. This one has been posted to Jassen Bailey’s The Crow’s Caw and was written by KE Bergdoll – you can see what they thought of it by going here.

Don’t forget, too, that you can also subscribe to this critically-acclaimed series of single short story chapbooks, thus ensuring that you don’t miss a single one and find out why it was nominated for a British Fantasy Award. For your convenience, there are Paypal buttons down the right-hand side (you can also pay by cheque or bank transfer – contact spectralpress[AT]gmail[DOT]com for details). You also have the option of buying 3-year or 5-year subscriptions, as well as the standard 1-year.

At the same time, why not order a copy of John Llewellyn Probert’s Spectral Visions novella The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine, an outrageously gruesome tribute to the films of Vincent Price. There’s a separate page for ordering it, listed next to ‘Home’ above.

Look forward to hearing from you – onward and upward!

A Spectral Miscellany

The Respectable Face of Tyranny cover image

For the first post of the week, we bring you a selection of this, that and the other, including the latest quote, some reviews and a bit of news. Let’s start with that quote, concerning the very first Spectral Visions novella:

“Like a jam session between Billy Bragg and H P Lovecraft or a mash-up of Rage Against the Machine and Algernon Blackwood, Gary Fry’s The Respectable Face of Tyranny is a radical — and remarkably successful — marriage of socio-economic outrage and Cosmic Horror.” — Peter Atkins (Screenwriter, Hellraiser II, III, & IV, Wishmaster and author of MorningstarBig Thunder Moontown)

We couldn’t have asked for a better quote from such an eminent fellow!

Staying with The Respectable Face of Tyranny, there’s a review of the novella in the new issue (#29) of Black Static magazine. Peter Tennant, the reviewer says of it:

“This is the finest work I’ve seen from Gary Fry, a story in which he blends numerous concerns about the plight of our world and dresses them all up in reinvented horror tropes, with the world’s financial systems personified as Cthulhuesque entities, a splendidly effective and apt metaphor.”

There are still paperback copies of this book available from us here at Spectral Towers, but in limited quantities – contact us at spectralpress@gmail.com for more details and how to order.

Peter Tennant also reviewed Simon Kurt Unsworth’s Rough Music and Alison Littlewood’s The Eyes of Water in the same issue. Of Rough Music he opined:

“With echoes of The Wicker Man in the masked revellers who appear nightly on The Green, this is a subtle and effective story about the workings of guilt, one that perhaps has more in common with Poe’s ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’ as [the] poor [protagonist] is tormented past any point of return.”

And this is part of what he said about Alison’s tale:

“[The Eyes of Water] is a beautifully realised story, with Littlewood bringing the Mexican setting to vivid life, a world of jungles and underwater caves, and also a place where the old rituals are deeply rooted, only hidden by a veneer of Christianity and civilisation.”

If you wish to read the reviews in their entirety, then please pick up a copy of the latest issue, available from TTA Press.

Finally, a snippet of news:  John Llewllyn Probert’s magnificent and gruesomely outrageous homage to the cinematic legacy of the late Vincent Price, The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine, will be up for pre-order tomorrow. There will be two price points: one for those attending FantasyCon 2012 (where it’s being officially launched so people can pick their copies up in person) and the other for those who aren’t (book price + p&p). This is the best way of securing a copy plus for those attending this event and no doubt John can be persuaded to personalise your copy while there. There will also be a free poster of the front cover image for those attending the launch, as well as free wine. Plus, there will almost certainly be an impromptu performance of select passages from the book in addition…. that’s definitely something to look forward to!

Anyway, that’s all for now, so onwards and upwards!

The Eyes of Water reviewed at the Hellforge

The Eyes of Water cover image

Midweek has come around fast yet again, and here we bring you notice of yet another review of Alison Littlewood’s Spectral chapbook, The Eyes of Water. This one’s written by Matthew Fryer and can be seen at his Welcome to the Hellforge blog – you can read it here.

More reviews soon!

A couple of foxy reviews

The Respectable Face of Tyranny cover image

This week ends on something of a high note (even better considering that there’s been a bout of illness at Spectral Towers), with notice of two new reviews over on Gef Fox’s Wag the Fox blog, of Gary Fry’s The Respectable Face of Tyranny and Alison Littlewood’s chapbook The Eyes of Water. It’s all part of his ‘Summer of Shorts’ season, featuring reviews and interviews posted during the month of July. We’ve been informed that an interview Gef conducted recently with Spectral’s Simon Marshall-Jones will be posted on the same site today, so please look out for that later.

In the meantime, go here to read Gef’s assessment of the two books.

More soon!

Some Dark Musings on chapbooks

Eyes of Water cover image

It’s another busy week already at Spectral Towers and so, just to reassure you that we haven’t forgotten our loyal readers and customers, here’s a link to a review of a couple of chapbooks posted to Anthony Watson’s Dark Musings blog yesterday – The Eyes of Water by Alison Littlewood and This Is Horror’s inaugural chapbook in their premium range, Joe & Me by David Moody. They share something in common other than the fact that they’re chapbooks – Spectral’s Editor/Publisher Simon Marshall-Jones is also the Senior Editor on the This Is Horror books. You can read what the inestimable Mr. Watson said about them here.

These two lines complement each other nicely – TIH‘s chapbooks cover the areas of horror which Spectral doesn’t and vice versa. The David Moody mini-tome is highly recommended, a well-told story of hard choices having to be made in extraordinary circumstances. Hop on over This Is Horror to find out more and how to subscribe.

More reviews soon – onwards and upwards!

The Eyes of Water peer out from The Black Abyss

Eyes of Water cover image

Monday morning appears to come around far too quickly these days, but at least it also appears that a new review of a Spectral publication always comes along to take the edge off it. This Monday morning is no exception: a new review of Alison Littlewood’s chapbook The Eyes of Water has been posted to Colin Leslie’s The Black Abyss website. You can read the review here.

Due to having been so busy last week, we didn’t get a chance to start sending the books out – that will be rectified this week! Apologies, and many thanks for your patience!

More reviews soon!

The Eyes of Water: two new reviews

Eyes of Water Cover image

The one thing we like waking up to here at Spectral Towers (apart from blue skies and sunshine, that is) is a new review popping up somewhere – but this morning was even better because we got both sunshine AND TWO new reviews. These latest write-up of Alison Littlewood’s chapbook are courtesy of two Scotsmen, Jim McLeod of the Ginger Nuts of Horror blog and pablocheesecake of The Eloquent Page. You can read Jim’s verdict here and pablo’s here.

More reviews soon!

The Eyes of Water: the view from Twilight Ridge

Eyes of Water cover image

It’s a miserably wet Monday morning yet again, but we here at Spectral Towers (the west wing of Marshall-Jones Mansions), are happy to tell you about a new review of the latest chapbook, Alison Littlewood’s The Eyes of Water. This one’s by Robert Morrish and appears on his Twilight Ridge blog – so, if you want to know what Mr. Morrish thought of Alison’s Yucatán-set tale, then may we humbly suggest that you pop on over to his blog by clicking here.

Talking of Alison’s chapbook, subscriber copies and promos will start to be sent out this week, but please be patient with us as it’s going to be rather busy for us what with other commissions and meetings. Nevertheless, we will endeavour to get as many out as possible – thanks for your patience!

More reviews soon!

Friday’s winner!

The Respectable Face of Tyranny cover image

Yes, today we announce the winner of the recent competition for purchasers of the paperback edition to win a signed proof-sheet of the cover to Gary Fry’s The Respectable Face of Tyranny . And that winner is….


Congratulations to Stephen – we’ll get your prize out to you very soon!


Eyes of Water cover image

Alison Littlewood’s chapbook The Eyes of Water is now ready for collection at the printers, so subscribers should expect their copies to arrive within the next couple of weeks.