Title: Horror House of Perversion 2: The Slaughtered Lambs
Author: Carl John Lee
Release date: August 5, 2022
I know the horror landscape is vast and filled with peaks and valleys. With each passing day more and more releases arrive and they run the gamut from deep explorations of grief to straight up torture porn. It’s up to each reader to find what they love and what their limits are.
It might surprise the three or four of you who read my reviews that I’m not an overly large fan of ‘extreme’ extreme horror. There are some classic extreme books out there that people rave about and I stumbled through them, barely getting through without DNFing. Then there are others that I’ve read and was blown away with the layers and the messaging and the depth of writing.
So far, what I’ve read from Carl John Lee puts him in the middle. ‘Uncle Carl’ to his fans writes both novellas that ask pointed questions and are topical (see: The Blood Beast Mutations) as well as straight up extreme slasher/survival exploitation (see: Cannibal Vengeance). It’s a neat line to walk and thankfully, for the readers, it doesn’t come across as formulaic or speed written.
What I liked: This one follows two fans of the heavy metal band The Slaughtered Lambs. Led by lead singer, Bobby, (a sexed up maniac who makes the women swoon and the men bang their heads), the two female fans go to the concert. They end up getting an invite back to the bands headquarters aka The Slaughterhouse and they can’t wait. But, things take a turn and blood begins to be spilled.
Lee writes stories that are always fast-paced. He is mysterious himself, his bio suggesting he cut his chops writing screenplays, but his writing is so similar in style to a few other authors, I’m curious to wonder if he isn’t a pseudonym. Most likely not, but it’s always fun to speculate!
One thing I really loved was the strong female leads who continue to persevere, even as it seems all hope is lost. There’s a ton of gore, violence and sadistic moments, which Lee deftly describes, but seeing how Kacey and her new love, Beth, continue to fight was great. Swallow (yes that was her name) is also a solid character and seeing her complete story arc was great.
For those asking or wondering – yes this is a sequel to the first, but you could get away with diving into this one without reading the first. It gets tied together in the final quarter (at one point I was wondering if this was a sequel in name only), but you won’t be lost at all if you didn’t read book one.
What I didn’t like: There was an all-too convenient plot point regarding an ex-significant other that played a role in the ending but the reader will see coming from a mile away. It was still a fun moment, but if Uncle Carl was attempting to have it surprise us, it definitely didn’t.
Why you should buy this: Carl John Lee is always a fun time, writing bloody B-Movie splatter. One thing I always love about his books is that they never feel like they take themselves too seriously, instead making for a fun reading experience and something that you could read in a single sitting if you wanted.
This was another great blast of brutality by an author who continues to slyly release solid novellas. I’d think this would become a big hit if it was released over on Godless, who knows, maybe Uncle Carl will read this and take my advice.