A novel by Jeff Strand
Introduction by Michael Prescott
Afterword by Jeff Strand
Art by Eric Dinyer
SYNOPSIS: Alex stared at the
red pocketknife shown to him by his daughter. A pocketknife owned
by somebody he hadn't seen in years
They met first in boarding school at age twelve. Alex Fletcher,
shy and scared. Darren Rust, always furiously scribbling away in
a private journal. It was not an immediate friendship, but then
one night Darren convinced his roommate to sneak off school grounds
to see something glorious. There was a sleazy strip club, you see,
and every once in a while the back door opened just long enough
to maybe catch a quick glimpse
Though a bond was formed from their pre-pubescent interest in naked
women, Darren had another interest. A morbid curiosity about death.
A curiosity that turned into something much more sinister.
They crossed paths again in college and became the best of friends.
But Darren wasn't just looking for a friend. He had dark, ghastly
urges squirming around in his head, and he believed he saw the same
thingsthe urge to hurt, the urge to killin Alex. He
was looking for somebody who understood. A partner.
But Alex could never become a monster. Not even when Darren tried
to bring out his friend's most deeply buried feelings of rage. Not
even when Darren tried to show him the euphoria of having that much
power over another human being. It just couldn't happen
Now Alex has a wife and a daughter. And Darren is back. He's hiding.
He's patient. His mind is twisted in the worst possible way.
And he's seeking a soul mate.
PRESSURE is a defining moment in Jeff Strand's career as an
author, and an unforgettable psychological thriller you do not
want to miss.
PRESSURE features a Foreword by New York Times bestselling
author Michael Prescott and an Afterword by Jeff Strand. Dustjacket
art and interior illustrations by Eric Dinyer.
PRESSURE is available in the following
|Trade hardcover (not signed)
|150 numbered hardcovers, bound in cloth with
higher quality endpapers than in the trade hardcover, and signed
by Jeff Strand and Michael Prescott on a special limitation
|26 lettered, traycased hardcovers, books and
traycases will be hand made with the finest materials (e.g.,
leather, Japanese cloth, hand made Japanese paper, and/or French
marbled paper), signed by Jeff Strand, Michael Prescott, and
the artist, Eric Dinyer, on a special limitation sheet
SPECIAL DEAL: Customers who buy a numbered
edition can get a trade edition for $20 ($5 off); customers who
buy a lettered edition can get a numbered edition for $40 ($10 off)
and a trade edition for $20 ($5 off).
"A bloody joyride."
"Marvelously creepy reading...the horror in this tale of twisted friendship is relentless."
"An outstanding novel of nail-biting tension. Strand's debut in the genre of suspense is about as top notch as it gets."
"Nail-biting, non-stop suspense seldom seen in the small (or large for that matter) press. This one forced my heart into my throat for more than half of it! I can’t say enough good things about PRESSURE, a novel that you’ll find very difficult to put down. Jeff Strand has left an unforgettable mark here; you’ll be thinking about this one for days."
—THE HORROR FICTION REVIEW
"A tight running noose of a nightmare, 237 pages of excruciating tourniquet-taut tension. The characters are believable and the action compelling. PRESSURE catches you by the throat and won't let go."
"PRESSURE is one of the best-written thrillers in recent memory. It doesn't rely on ancient codes or terrorist threats for its intrigue. Instead, Strand captivates us by pitting one good man — a regular guy — against a human monster. PRESSURE is a novel that demands to be read in one sitting, followed by staying up all night, listening for any unusual sounds outside."
"PRESSURE is a masterpiece. The pressure of the book's title
is the pressure the reader feels, knowing the entire time that all
the happiness and good things that happen to Alex [the protagonist]
are only fleeting. The ferocity with which these things are taken
away from him is the only variable in question, which is what will
keep the reader on edge for the entire novel. It's all made somewhat
tolerable, so the strain isn't quite enough to kill you, because
Jeff Strand also has a fantastic ability to make light of the situation.
As a character, Alex is a bit of a smartass, [and releases] just
enough pressure to keep you moving forward. I think without this
perfectly timed humor, this book might be too oppressive for some
readers. You do not want to miss this book under any circumstances.
5 out of 5 Mugs O'Blood."
The Horror Channel
"PRESSURE is a deeply unsettling psychological thriller that
probes the darkest recesses of the mind as expressed in the
disturbing relationship between two childhood friends who grow up
to be more than enemies.... Relentless, gripping, and frightening.
An outstanding novel, impossible to put down."
Douglas Preston, New York Times bestselling
co-author of RELIC and DANCE OF DEATH
"Jeff Strand's PRESSURE is an ominous, disturbing study of
two lives closely interwoven from childhood onward in an elaborate
tapestry of vengeance, paranoia, and death. A chilling, flesh-crawling
experience. I read it in one sitting and haven't been the same since!"
Michael Prescott, New York Times bestselling
author of MORTAL FAULTS
"Jeff Strand's PRESSURE is a remarkable book. As I read it,
I kept thinking ... 'Oh no. You're not going there!' ... but he
did and then some! A frightening mix of TOM BROWN'S SCHOOLDAYS
meets LORD OF THE FLIES, this is a great story all the more remarkable
because of the light it shines into the darkest corners of the human
psyche and soul. I highly recommend this book."
Rick Hautala, author of OCCASIONAL
DEMONS and FOUR OCTOBERS
"Brilliant, unflinching, and unforgettable. PRESSURE will
blow you away."
J.A. Konrath, bestselling author of
"This dark and mesmerizing novel left me shaking. From its
amazing opening line to its nerve-wracking final chapters, PRESSURE
is a raw nerve, an open-wound of a narrative wherein Strand deals
with some of the bleakest and most disturbing aspects of the human
psyche. One of the richest, most compelling, and memorable novels
I've read in the past 5 years."
Gary A. Braunbeck, Stoker Award-winning
author of PRODIGAL BLUES
"Harrowing, disturbing...Jeff Strand's PRESSURE is the closest
I've come to having a nightmare with my eyes still open. If Brett
Easton Ellis had written CAPE FEAR, you might approach the primal
suspense of Strand's lean and mean novel. A crackling, buzzing hornet's
nest of psychological terror spanning two decades in the lives of
two extremely dysfunctional friends. I could not put this one down.
Jay Bonansinga, bestselling author
of TWISTED, FROZEN, and THE SINKING OF THE EASTLAND
"I believe Jeff Strand channeled the ghost of Richard Laymon
for this one. I know for sure he would have loved it."
Jack Ketchum, author of THE GIRL NEXT
"Jeff Strand continues to amaze me. Every time I decide his
writing can't get any better, he pulls another story out of his
hat and proves me wrong. From the first time I read him his blend
of wit and brutality have caught my attention and kept it. With
PRESSURE, Stand turns down the humor and ups the suspense to lethal
levels. Electrifying and intense, disturbing and even a touch nostalgic,
PRESSURE is the sort of book one should savor. Just remember to
check the doors when you're reading. Unexpected noises could be
hazardous to your health. Simply put, PRESSURE is a masterpiece."
James A. Moore, author of BLOOD RED
and SERENITY FALLS
"PRESSURE is superb. I read it over a feverish twenty-four
hours, snatching it up whenever I got the chance in order to devour
just those few pages more. On this evidence, Strand should be up
there with the likes of Joe Lansdale. His characters are achingly,
touchingly real, his dialogue laugh-out-loud witty and his horror
almost impenetrably black."
Mark Morris, author of THE IMMACULATE
"Jeff Strand is an excellent writer and PRESSURE is an elegant,
dazzling showcase for his talents, clever and funny and dreadfully
cruel. I loved it."
Christopher Golden, bestselling author
of WILDWOOD ROAD and THE MYTH HUNTERS
"PRESSURE showcases Jeff Strand is at his besta terror-filled
roller coaster ride that doesn't let up until the final pages. Strand
redefines what horror is all about!"
Steve Gerlach, author of RAGE, LAKE
MOUNTAIN, and LOVE LIES DYING
"PRESSURE is a well-written coming-of-age tale, with a wicked
twist that will leave the reader turning the pages well into the
night. Despite its atypical start, readers will soon come to realize
that author Jeff Strand is about to reveal to them a darker side
of life, both in childhood and adulthood, that we as human beings
fail to recognize, and rightly so. There are sicknesses felt and
experienced here that will affect the reader for days to come."
Michael Laimo, author of THE DEMONOLOGIST
and DEEP IN THE DARKNESS
"In PRESSURE, Jeff Strand writes with an enviable deftness
whether he's depicting the perils of childhood or the agonies of
adulthood. Be glad you're not in his narrative crosshairs."
Matthew Warner, author of THE ORGAN
"Strand gets serious and follows the antagonistic (to say
the least) friendship of two boarding-schoolmates throughout their
lives. The characters are fully-drawn with strengths and flaws on
both sides. With the right marketing, this could be a mainstream
best-sellerit's that good and that accessible to the general
Craig Clarke, Craig's Book Club
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jeff Strand
is best known as the creator of Andrew Mayhem, the hero of such
thriller/comedies as GRAVEROBBERS WANTED (NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY),
SINGLE WHITE PSYCHOPATH SEEKS SAME, and CASKET FOR SALE (ONLY USED
ONCE). He has also written novels about giant killer ants, dead
princesses, and sketch comedy troupes, although PRESSURE contains
none of these elements. He is very pleased to be a published novelist
because it means that his degree in Creative Writing wasn't a total
waste (although it was close). He lives in Tampa, Florida, because
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