{Book Review} A Vulgar Display of Short Fiction: Joe Zito

A Vulgar Display Of Short Fiction: Joe Zito

Reviewed By Steve Stred

Look at that title!

Come on?

If you’re a metalhead you’ve got a copy of Pantera’s 1992 seminal album ‘A Vulgar Display of Power.’ Featuring the classic songs ‘Mouth for War,’ ‘Walk,’ ‘A New Level,’ ‘This Love,’ and ‘F***ing Hostile’ the album blisters from start to finish. Haven’t heard it? Then you’ve at least seen the album cover. The one of the long-haired headbanger get straight punched to the face!

Joe Zito is a metalhead through and through. I connected with him on Twitter a few years back and have become a fan of his writing in that time. He writes with an easy-going, highly accessible prose that can go from dark and beautiful to vicious and devastating in a heartbeat.

What I liked:A Vulgar Display of Short Fiction‘ is completely inspired by metal and more specifically death metal lyrics. From the story titles, to the content to even the way the stories are ordered, this could be handed to me as a CD or trading tape and it would work just as well. ‘House by the Cemetery‘ opens the collection and it reads like a lead single. We are introduced to a metal band, heading out to the house by the cemetery to jam at a new rehearsal space. Once there, things take a turn and Zito doesn’t take his feet off the kick drums once after that. It’s all blast-beats and squelching buzzsaw guitars from there on out. ‘Jesus F**K‘ goes to Clive Barker levels of depravity and ‘Undying‘ is a fantastic story about teens playing their records backwards. The highlight for me was ‘Sex Crazed Monsters F***ing In a Cave.‘ The title is completely bonkers, but the story inside is just as insane as it suggests. From there we get a few splatterpunk stories that absolutely should’ve had trigger warnings! Loved it and even for someone like me that hardly cringes and grew up watching Live Leak and Consumption Junction there was a few icky spots!

What I didn’t like: While I enjoyed every story, there were a couple that fell flat and that’s to be expected with any collection. As I mentioned before, if you are a fan of trigger warnings, there are a few stories in here that will completely repulse and offend you, so if reading Cannibal Corpse lyrics is too much, you’d be best served skipping them, especially the story that starts off with the rocking of a crib. 

Why you should buy it: Read ebooks? Then you don’t need to buy it! Zito has it for free at Smashwords. Prefer paperback? Joe has said the paperback will be live shortly and if you enjoy super gruesome, super splatter with a side dose of over the top offensive content – you can’t go wrong here. I’m a fan of Joe’s work, so I highly suggest you give this a read!

A Vulgar Display Of Short Fiction

Step into the fire and bathe in the orange and black shadows of fictional depravity as Joe Zito offers up ten blistering short stories of pornosatanic hardcore horror! Terrorize your mind with lust, blood cults and ancient spells! Ingest vulgar words involving strange beasts, morbid deaths and 80’s heavy metal! Revel in the carnage of blasphemy, snuff films and supernatural entities!
A Vulgar Display of Short Fiction will drag you screaming into the very depths of splatterpunk hell! Without mercy! Read if you dare!

You can pick up A Vulgar Display Of Short Fiction for FREE from Smashwords

Steve Stred

Steve Stred writes dark, bleak horror fiction.

Steve is the author of three novels, a number of novellas and four collections.

He is proud to work with the Ladies of Horror Fiction to facilitate the Annual LOHF Writers Grant.

Steve is also a voracious reader, reviewing everything he reads and submitting the majority of his reviews to be featured on Kendall Reviews.

Steve Stred is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, his son and their dog OJ.

You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred

You can follow Steve on Instagram @stevestred

You can visit Steve’s Official website here

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