Folks who frequent Biff Bam Pop! know the name of Lucas Mangum. He’s one of our own, he’s a friend, he’s a contributor here onsite, but more than that, he is one hell of a writer beyond the world of pop culture we cover here. I suggested his novel Mania last year in our Holiday Gift Guide, and now Lucas has a new book out, an anthology of short stories. Meet me after the jump for the details on Lucas Mangum’s Engines of Ruin.
Engines of Ruin contains a collection of short stories by Lucas Mangum, including one that graced Biff Bam Pop’s own anthology Strange World, called “Occupy Babylon.” Strange World has some other good stuff in it, like one tale by myself, that one or two folks have liked. By far however more folks likes Lucas’ contribution, either way, Strange World is pretty good. Plug over, at least the small one is. The real master at work here is Mangum, and the aforementioned “Occupy Babylon,” a throwback to the days of ‘Occupy Wall Street’ mixed with zombie flair is just one of the winners in Engines of Ruin.
The collection has four previously published works, and four brand new ones, all of them dark fiction twists on conventional horror, with Mangum’s trademark fun spin, his wink and a grin, no matter how dark, gritty, and bloody it gets. He is a scary master of words and darkness, never holds anything back in his prose, and even though he scares me (especially after reading his fiction), I’m damn (or is it damned?) proud to know him. Lucas Mangum rules.
Within Engines of Ruin you will find nearly three hundred pages of no holds barred madness that only he could conjure. Surreal, horrific, all-too-real, and paranoiac, these stories, some with a pleasantly familiar New Jersey vibe (despite chilling in Texas these days, Lucas spent some time in my neck of the woods) just as Stephen King mainlines Maine into his work, are gems that will not quickly be forgotten. My personal favorites in the bunch include “Hell and Back,” “Our Lady of the Sea,” “Worlds Colliding,” and “A Killing Back Home.” Ask me again tomorrow and I’ll name different ones. Must read for horror fans, even though not all perfectly fit the genre, still all are must read.
The collection includes a forward by author and screenwriter Shane McKenzie, and author notes at the end giving some background as to the inspiration behind these stories. This is an amazing collection that can be found on Amazon for Kindle here. See Lucas Mangum’s website here, Follow him on Twitter here, see his BBP work here, and check out his novel Dark of Night here.