Brian Keene is my favorite horror author… possibly my favorite author of any genre. I “discovered” Brian Keene several years back, while looking over new zombie books. Up until that point zombie books seemed few and far between. This was before World War Z, before zombie mash-ups, before The Walking Dead, Zombieland, before the zombie “Renaissance” of the last couple years. From the start his zombies were different. Gone were the mindless lumbering creatures of the past and in their place the Siqqusim, led by Ob, an ancient creature who existed before our universe. They could set traps, operate machinery and use weapons. And it wasn’t just human corpses they could reanimate… not good! All that fun was in his first book The Rising. I actually had trouble sleeping! And the ending? Total cliffhanger. Of course a sequel was due, so he gave us City of the Dead which picks up right after the Rising. Things aren’t any better. They are worse. I know a horror book is good when one, I can’t stop reading and two, I am so glad what is happening isn’t happening to me.
What followed those two books were a plethora of horror fiction… everything from killer earthworms (behemoth) and mythical sea creatures (leviathan) to Satyrs. There are cannibalistic mutants who inhabit the same island where a “Survivor” type reality show is filming. There is a town in which no one can leave alive and a town plagued by shape shifting birds. And there are also those who fight the evil, like Levi Stoltzfus, an ex-Amishman “mystic”. Levi is one of my favorite characters who turns up more then once. He fights using magic handed down to him on his father’s side. Brian’s books share a common enemy, “The Thirteen” creatures that are neither gods nor demons. They are a race of beings that are holdovers from a universe that existed before this one, a universe God destroyed in order to create ours. They now want to destroy our universe, God’s creation. Some of these creatures are weaker such as Meeble, while others seem to be quite active and epic such as Ob or the very powerful He Who Shall Not Be Named. I know this sounds complicated, but it really is highly entertaining. And I will warn you this, you will NOT cheer for any of these creatures! Brian Keene takes our world, our universe, our “normal”, and turns it inside out, making it the stuff of nightmares! He writes the ultimate good vs. evil, those of God vs. those against Him.
Brian Keene has also written several short story collections as well as several graphic novels . His blog can be found at http://www.briankeene.com/. his blog includes author interviews, a forum, numerous links and this past year an online sequel to his book, Conqueror Worms, called Deluge. He has won two Bram Stoker Awards, one being for The Rising. in 2004 and 2005 he spearheaded “Books for Troops” in which various horror authors supplied free, signed books for American Troops serving overseas. Several of his books have been optioned for films.
Brian is an extremely talented, intelligent author who I expect even more from in the coming years… I really can’t wait to see what is next. He takes ancient myth and lore and incorporates it into his stories. Some have called him Lovecraftian as his books carry an almost Cthulhu mythos about them, but most importantly… his books are REALLY scary!