The Literary Six: Awards | Reviews | Blurbs


WINNER 2007 IPPY Award (Silver) in the Horror category
FINALIST in ForeWord Magazine’s 2006 Book of the Year Awards in the Gay/Lesbian Fiction category


“Vince Liaguno’s The Literary Six is strangers meeting on a (terror) train. Think April Fool’s Day from film meets The Secret History from fiction. And, like all good strangers, once these two get together, there’s blood. Think Happy Birthday to Me or My Bloody Valentine or Prom Night or any of the other slasher-by-numbers from the Golden Age of Freddy and Jason and Michael, but don’t (though you’ll be tempted) try to shove this book into your VCR. Instead just let it play in your head, and with your head, and if you can keep from grinning, then you’re a better person than me. As Liaguno shows us with this impressive debut, the slasher is far from dead – it isn’t even tired yet.”
Stephen Graham Jones, Author of Demon Theory

“Take a slasher flick, mix in a dash of Agatha Christie and a pinch of Ghost Story while folding in really interesting, rich characters, and the result is a novel you can enjoy while curled up in bed on a cold winter night  or on a beach somewhere as you tan away your summer vacation… There’s a wonderful cinematic feel to this novel and the result is an atmospheric piece with genuine creepy moments and many out and out heart-stoppers.”
– Paul G. Bens, Jr., Author of Kelland

“Filled with the right mix of horror, thrills, chills and slasher gore, this novel enthralled into the wee hours of the night. Hard to believe this is Liaguno’s first novel, because this tightly plotted tale about six college writers who reunite twenty years later on a remote island during a winter storm reminded me of some of the best stuff by authors with much more recognizable names. In fact, The Literary Six, with its twists and turns galore, reads like a polished author’s fifth or sixth novel, filled with great characters, dead-on (no pun intended) dialog and plenty of graphic sex and gore. As the bodies fall, the clues pile up; yet just when you think you are sure you know what is going on, the bottom falls out from under you. Chock full of mystery and romance and tinged with all the things that make readers flock to books by guys named King and Kellerman and Koontz, The Literary Six turns tables and twists endings even when you think you know who’s done what to whom. It’s a fantastic first-time novel, and I for one will be waiting with bated breath for Liaguno’s next.”
Curled Up With A Good Book

“In The Literary Six, payback is not a joke.  Definitely sleep with some lights on…it’s chilling to the core.”
– Armchair Interviews

The Literary Six is a literary treat for fans of good old-fashioned slashers and proves that you don’t have to rely on a battered ex-rental tape and a miracle of VCR tracking to get that authentic fix. When it comes to gripping and intelligent slashers, it seems the pen is mightier than the machete.”
– Retro Slashers

The Literary Six charges forward like an out-of-control locomotive with a bomb on board, bearing down on a station full of lost and unsuspecting souls. The story is smartly told and well plotted, the characters vividly drawn and memorable. Liaguno brings a unique and refreshing voice to the field of thriller writing. I believe he’ll be around for a long time to come.”
Mark Edward Hall, Author of The Lost Village & The Holocaust Opera

“An intense, nail-biting plot with plenty of inventive kills and thrills…Liaguno has a few surprises up his sleeve with vibrant characters with depth and complex relationships that add dramatic layers to the plot. These relationships help create a slow tension-filled build to a surprisingly brilliant climax that is sure to bring a sharp gasp. Liaguno gives readers the blood and gore they expect in a thriller, and readers can expect bloody axes, power outages, a masked killer, and a dark snowy night. The Literary Six is a classic slasher novel.
– Authors After Dark

The Big Chill meets Freddy Kreuger. Liaguno’s fast-paced horror story has all the tropes chillingly in place: a touch of romance, flashes of humor, moments of pathos, bloody (very bloody) revenge, and a moral to wrap it all up.”
– Richard Labonté / Books To Watch Out For

“Missing heads, hot tub sex, unspeakable secrets, old boyfriends, blood on the snow of stormy winter nights — Vince Liaguno’s debut novel, The Literary Six, has all the right ingredients for thrilling and chilling. A set-up full of atmosphere – jealousy, alcohol, money, lust – and the story really takes off when the guests put on their party clothes and begin to disappear, one by one, a la Christie’s Ten Little Indians. Liaguno is a writer to keep an eye on. The murder is hot, the sex is steamy and his sense of momentum from scene to scene, spot-on. The series of short scenes, movie-like, that lead to the denouement deserves wholeheartedly the genre description, HORROR.”
ForeWord Clarion Reviews

“Liaguno goes beyond Agatha Christie’s proper styling and writes a book that Christie would have written if she married John Carpenter. While scary as hell, The Literary Six contains some deep and disturbing truths about human nature and the effect our own past mistakes have on those around us. It’s not just interested in skimming the pond here — it delves deep.”
– Eric Arvin, Author of The Rest Is Illusion

“Dark, scary, and absorbing. Vince A. Liaguno has penned a compelling and impressive debut. Tight plotting, nail-biting suspense…it’s all there. But the characterization is what sets this book apart. The Literary Six comes alive. You like them, you root for them. You don’t want them to die!”
Amanda Stevens, Author of The Dollmaker

“Revenge stories, especially in the horror genre, have a tradition all their own. We’ve all seen variations on the theme. But what makes Liaguno’s variation so compelling is the way he makes it his own, creating real, flesh-and-blood characters who are as flawed as the people in our own lives. This makes us care about them at the start of the novel, when they are college students, and much later, when the horror of their alliance comes back to haunt them. Liaguno is masterful at creating suspense and dread, but what really makes you afraid, and what really involves you in The Literary Six is the way he makes you care about the characters: there are genuine goosebumps when you see people you recognize and empathize with, and this is where Liaguno’s talent soars.”
– Rick R. Reed, Author of IM and In the Blood

“By writing The Literary Six, Vince Liaguno has accomplished a rare and unusual feat: the creation of an excellent, scary slasher movie in the form of a novel. Liaguno does a wonderful job of capturing the “essence” of the cinematic slasher in the pages of his novel.  His slasher is a horrifying slasher indeed – an impressive literary creation that becomes more complex as the story goes along. Wes Craven’s Scream attracted a lot of attention because of its intertextuality: a slasher movie that was aware of itself as participating in a larger body of slasher movies. Liaguno’s novel contains a similar intertextuality, but his story does not contain the postmodern irony of the Craven films.  In other words, this novel is an homage to the slasher genre while simultaneously offering a genuine slasher movie experience.”
Chad Helder, Author of The Pop-Up Book of Death

“It’s likely that you’ve never heard of Vince Liaguno before, but I’m predicting his name will be common within the horror genre before long. When I accept review assignments, I try my hardest to find something I can offer the author as constructive criticism from the average readers’ point of view. Most of my reviews are for first time authors who generally have obvious weaknesses that are easy to point out. Liaguno has provided a challenge I can’t overcome! This is Liaguno’s first novel, but he certainly doesn’t make it obvious. He writes as if he’s been doing this for years. The characters are believable and provided with richly described settings to live in – or, in this case, die in. The Literary Six is a great read.”
– TCM Reviews

“Vince Liaguno is destined to be the newest voice in horror writing. His style is that of Jack Ketchum, Agatha Christie, and Peter Straub combined. The detail and depth of the story is outstanding while the horror of it is deliciously stomach turning. The Literary Six is a page-turner that you will not put down, and when the cover does close the tale may continue to haunt your thoughts. The book is deep with believable, intricate characters in the throes of love and life, rich with sensory perception and description, and ripe with delectable suspense and tingle-producing terror. Exactly what a work of horror should be and more!”

“In The Literary Six, Vince Liaguno crafts a well-written homage to the various slasher horror films. The story is heavily character-driven with a great deal of attention given to the members and the relationships of the members of the titular group. Liaguno does a great job of keeping the reader’s attention with this gripping story.  While anyone who has watched any of the multitudes of slasher movies will be able to identify the plot devices and vehicles in the story, Liaguno’s storytelling is superior. If you see a friend trying to check out a slasher movie, take that movie out of their hand and give them a copy of The Literary Six. They will thank you for it.”

“Vince Liaguno’s debut novel is a slasher film in print, albeit with a bit more depth and protagonists that are more mature than your typical summer camper. One of the strengths of The Literary Six is in the characterizations of the principals. It’s obvious that Liaguno cares for most of these characters and that empathy carries over to the reader, making the harrowing events of the reunion all the more chilling…a visceral, satisfying tale of revenge.”
Horror World

“Put any thoughts of cheese away…this is a serious slasher story. Author Vince Liaguno has really done a great job putting the classic slasher formula to paper. The basic formula is here but it’s written well enough that you don’t feel you’re reading something you’ve read or seen a million times before…and how often does that happen in the slasher genre?”

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