Monday, June 26, 2017

Book Review | No Mercy by Alessandro Manzetti

No Mercy is a collection of horror poetry from Alessandro Manzetti.


From the Bram Stoker Award-winning poet that brought you Eden Underground...

The Lady in Black shows no mercy to anyone; she has cold skin, a job to do, and many lovers on Earth: Despair, Loneliness, Madness, and their soldiers and killers of daily life, armed with blades, hammers, teeth, and illusions. There are strange and bloody stories that tell all about it, if you want to hear them…

Are you sure? Well, you’ve found the right place, but consider that in turning these pages you’ll be thrown forward through time, until you reach the Apocalypse—the last stop.

So, like the Lady in Black, show yourself no mercy—sit down and read these stories, listening to Janis Joplin with a bottle of Southern Comfort cradled in your arm.

Don’t worry, you’ll find both of them inside this book, along with so many other dark pleasures.

No Mercy is dedicated to the late, great Janis Joplin. Some of these poems placed me right into Port Arthur, Texas and "the smell of river and summer". I had to look up where Alessandro Manzetti is from to find out if he is simply that big of a Janis Joplin fan or if he is actually from my part of the world. It turns out he lives in Italy.

I cannot claim to be an authority on poetry. I love reading it when I come across it, but I've never really made an effort to seek out modern poetry. I used to subscribe to a lot of fiction magazines (mostly horror) and that's where I've been exposed to most of the modern poetry that I have read save for a few anthologies that have included them. My personal feeling toward poetry is that it should evoke some sort of emotion from the reader. Perhaps I only feel that way because all of my favorite poems have done that, and as I stated, I'm not any kind of an authority on what poetry should or should not do.

For me, No Mercy was very successful in evoking emotion. For that, I think it is a wonderful collection. Unfortunately, the emotions it evoked for me were not pleasant. I feel like No Mercy did it's job, but I wasn't the perfect audience.

No Mercy is a perfect title, I suppose; it's a very bleak collection.

I have no doubt there is an audience that will connect with all of the poems in No Mercy, and it will be a solid collection for those readers. If you look at the ugliness of horror and see beauty, you might be the right fit. I look at horror as something to overcome. I see horror as a balance to the light. It's more of a source of entertainment for me than something I try to internalize. I don't want to dissuade anyone from reading this collection, though, because your mileage certainly could vary.

6/10: Good Read

Review copy provided by publisher

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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Recent Updates and Currently Reading | June 23

I missed posting an update last weekend. I think I was in "I don't want to because it's summer!" mode. This week has been dreary and rainy so I've had much more success on the reading front. I had some time off of work due to tropical storm Cindy so I was even able to catch up on some blog tasks and reviews.

Posted Last Week


Book Review | In the Valley of the Sun by Andy Davidson

Read Last Week



I've been starting more books lately than I have been finishing. I did, however, finish both Skitter and No Mercy this past week. In a move very unlike me, I have already written reviews for them so expect to see those soon.

Review Copies




No Mercy
by Alessandro Manzetti - I dove straight into this one and finished it already. It's a horror poetry collection. How could I say no to that? Impossible!

Sea of Rust by C. Robert Cargill - I have no words for how much I want to read Cargill's latest book. He told me at Comicpalooza that this one is pure scifi. All that's left are the robots and now it's time for them to start killing each other. SIGN. ME. UP.


Everything That's Underneath: A Collection of Weird and Horror Tales by Kristi DeMeester - Everything That’s Underneath, Kristi DeMeester’s debut powerful horror collection, is full of weird, unsettling tales that recalls the styles of such accomplished storytellers as Laird Barron and Tom Piccirilli.

Ugly Little Things by Todd Keisling - I became a big fan of Todd Keisling after reading The Final Reconciliation. I'm looking forward to reading this collection of stories.

Entertaining Demons by Daniel I. Russell - A teenage girl is staring in a reality TV show about a paranormal investigation. I'm a complete sucker for hauntings so I will be giving this one a try.

Current Distractions



I have started watching Under the Dome on my lunch hour. Even though it is Stephen King, I haven't actually read the book. I will eventually.



I know my TV choices are weird right now! Hubs and I never really got into Game of Thrones back in the day so we've decided to start over from the beginning. We both know not to get attached to any of the characters.


Our summer of board games has continued with the last couple of weeks being mostly about Roll for It and Uno. My favorite thing about Roll for It is you can combine both editions and play up to 8 players. This works really well for our family of 5.

So what about you? Let me know what you're reading (or playing) this week or leave me some links!


This post is being shared as part of Book Date's It's Monday! What Are You Reading?, Tynga's Reviews' Stacking the Shelves, and Caffeinated Book Reviewer's The Sunday Post.

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