Zakk reviews Vyrmin by Gene Lazuta

“Ex Libris The Eyes of Madness, simple and honest reviews from a simple reader…”

Zakk reviews Vyrmin by Gene Lazuta, 315 pages published by Bloodshot Books (October 15, 2016)

“He wore his khaki uniform casually, with his shirt’s top button undone, his sunglasses dangling by one arm from his left front pocket. The well-oiled Colt .45 in his holster was the one he had carried in Korea. And when he spoke—with a southern twang that got even twangier when he was dealing with tourists—he stood with his legs crossed and his right hand resting on the weapon’s butt. 

Seeing him for the first time, strolling slowly up to the side of your car with his belly sticking out just a bit and his cowboy boots grey with road dust, it wasn’t hard to imagine him spitting chaw while he looked your northern ass up and down and wondered how much money was in your wallet… 

Which was just the reaction he was looking for.”


The Vyrmin Will Rise…

Hidden among us are the wicked. Their vile deeds have been retold from generation to generation down through the ages.

They are hidden among us—evil men and women, always dangerous, always Wild.

They are hidden among us—and they become beasts…during the Dark Times.

The Blood Prince Awakens…

One man is the key. He will renew the Hunt. But who is the Blood Prince? What horrific things happen when he enters the woods? Can anyone stop him? Will anyone even try?

The Dark Times are Nigh…

When the beasts that are men return to the Wild.

When the beasts that are men return to the Hunt.

When the Blood Prince takes the hand of his demon lover in the sky.

When the screaming starts under the cold silver gaze of a pitiless, hungry moon.

The Vyrmin Will Feed!

“It wasn’t like in the movies. No fangs growing up from her lower jaw, or hair sprouting, or nose turning into a little black button. No pointy ears or whiskers. No, it wasn’t like in the movies. It was like in hell.”

First Thoughts (judging the book by it’s cover)

While this is a recent release from Bloodshot Books (as part of their Second Sight line), Vyrmin was originally released in 1992, a great time for horror fiction. Unfortunately this title didn’t cross my path as my local bookstore horror shelves were pretty dominated by Koontz & King. Can you blame them though? This duo was really bringing in dollars, which meant that it was rather difficult finding much else in the way of small press or break out authors.

The cover to Vyrmin has a striking, primal image that gets me kind of pumped up for an awesome read. As I mentioned, 1992 was prime time for horror fiction, a time when I was really coming into my own as a reader, so “cracking the spine” on this digital read feels akin to hopping into a time machine. Riding it back to when horror had an honest edge to it versus a forced edge that a lot of titles have now.

If it wasn’t obvious, this is my first Gene Lazuta read. It’s never to late to make your acquaintance, right?

“For a split second before he bent his head and spilled his guts, Conway saw the moon overhead become a single, open eye, surrounded by a silhouette that defined a being so vast that it could have easily held the Earth in its hand. It filled the sky, overhung the world. And dwarfed the planet. It was immense, towering, and black. The moon was its eye, and the sky its skin, and everyone and everything that had ever been or would ever be, all taken together, would combine as a speck of dust before it…”

Final Impressions (judging the book by it’s content)

First off, I’d like to thank Mr. Lazuta for writing a stunning, highly enjoyable novel. Secondly, I’d like to thank Pete Kahle and Bloodshot Books for taking the time and effort to get this book re-released for a new generation of Horror fans. The fact that I am actually from the previous generation of Horror fans is not lost on me, which is why I am gratfull for the second chance at the Second Sight release. If not for Bloodshot Books this title, and the meaty, palpable writing of Mr. Lazuta may have been lost to me, never to have been discovered. I am quite grateful.

Vyrmin is a dense and tactile book. Less of a read and more of an experience. I connected easily with the dimensional and thought provoking characters pushing this narrative along, living in this world. It is a world with landmarks I can see, with native foliage I can smell, with a constantly shifting sense of malice that I can fell rippling up my arms in gooseflesh. And this is all conjured by the mesmerizing words and style spun by Mr. Lazuta, How he didn’t catch on with readers into McCammon, Simmons, King & Koontz baffles me. Granted Vyrmin is my first, and as of now only, Lazuta read, it’s easy to see that he has firm grasp on his craft. Did I say “firm grasp”? I meant death grip. How isn’t he ranked up with the labeled masters McCammon, Simmons, Laymon, or Grant?

The lore presented in Vyrmin is deeper than any other werewolf yarn I’ve ever read, it is multifaceted and it is exceptional. Building upon itself with such force and complexity, a sense of doom that compounds exponentially and can only end in glorious annihilation. And when the shit hits the fan it does so in spectacular and fascinating fashion.

I am on a mission to find and devour any and all Gene Lazuta novels, and if they tap into what makes me tick half as much as Vyrmin did, I’ll be a very happy reader. Wish me luck.


Hands down, an amazing read and one of my top pics for 2016. Get your hands on this book and get lost in it’s lore. Vyrmin is a “Must Read” for any genre fan and will be a title I revisit in the future, more than likely sooner rather than later. You’re going to love this.

Zakk is a big dumb animal!

**Note: While I was offered a complimentary copy of this book from the author and/ or publisher, I read Vyrmin via my paid Kindle Unlimited Subscription. I am reviewing it voluntarily. These are my honest, unbiased feelings. I did not receive any sort of compensation.

Gene Lazuta, Biography

Gene Lazuta lives in Berea, Ohio, a small college town south of Cleveland. A graduate of Baldwin-Wallace College, where he met his wife of 33 years, Sue, he is the author of 10 novels (Written as Alex Kane: The Shinglo, Jove books, 1989; written as Daniel Raven: Happy Cage, Onyx Books, 1989; written as Gene Lazuta for Diamond Books: Blood Flies, 1990;, 1991; Vyrmin, 1992; and Forget Me Not, 1992; Bleeder written as Leo Axler for Berkley Prime Crime, the “Bill Hawley Undertakings”: Final Viewing, 1994; Double Plot, 1994; Grave Matters, 1995; and Separated at Death, 1996), and he is the co-author of IT’s About Patient Care: Transforming Healthcare Information Technology the Cleveland Clinic Way, McGraw-Hill Education, October, 2016, as well as numerous chapters, papers and articles about health information technology.

An avid guitar enthusiast, Gene enjoys hard rock and heavy metal, blues, and shredder rock; and he and his wife are the proud humans to Ollie, a 25 pound silver male Maine Coon cat.

The 2016 Bloodshot Books edition of Vyrmin marks the first time the book has appeared in trade paperback or electronically, and Gene is grateful to Pete Kahle, author and Bloodshot Books owner and senior editor, for bringing the story to a new generation of horror readers in these exciting new formats.

Purchase Links


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One Comment Add yours

  1. horriblepete says:

    Reblogged this on bloodshotbooks and commented:
    Kickass review from Zakk


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