Annal: 2003 Bram Stoker Award for First Novel

Results of the Bram Stoker Award in the year 2003.

Book:The Rising

The Rising

Brian Keene

The dead are returning to life as intelligent zombies. Trapped by the undead, escape seems impossible for Jim Thurmond. But Jim’s young son is alive and in dire peril hundreds of miles away. Despite overwhelming odds, Jim vows to find him— or die trying.

Joined by an elderly preacher, a guilt-ridden scientist, and a determined ex-prostitute, Jim embarks on a cross-country rescue mission. They must battle both the living and the living dead. And for Jim and his companions, an even greater evil awaits them at the end of their journey. This is the time of…The Rising.

Book:Monstrocity

Monstrocity

Jeffrey Thomas

There are haunted places. Haunted houses. The metropolis of Punktown, on the planet Oasis, is a haunted city. An unassuming and aimless young man has begun to perceive the city’s dark tentacles in the lay of the streets. Its roots in the labyrinth of the subways. Its polluted taint in the eyes of the people he knows, and even loves. And this evil is stirring, building toward an apocalyptic culmination. The city is not only haunted—it’s perhaps a living thing.

Monstrocity combines elements of science fiction with horror in the vein of H. P. Lovecraft, taking place in the milieu of Jeffrey Thomas’ acclaimed collection, Punktown - which China Mieville described as “searing and alien and anxious and rich.”

Book:Veniss Underground

Veniss Underground

Jeff VanderMeer

Jeff VanderMeer’s last book, City of Saints & Madmen, explored the limits of literary fantasy, garnering raves from critics, including a starred review in Publishers Weekly. Now, with Veniss Underground, VanderMeer explores the limits of love, memory, and obsession in a far future SF novel that combines the grotesque and the sublime in a rousing adventure-mystery.

On a far future Earth where vast deserts—ecological disaster areas—surround walled city-states slowly losing their grip on advanced technology, the mysterious Quin manipulates biological engineering to create sentient species as both toys and a growing source of manual labor. When Nicholas, a failed holo artist, decides to visit Quin, he, his programmer sister, Nicola, and her former lover, Shadrach, will all discover what it really means to know Quin, in the place known as Veniss Underground.

Book:Wolf's Trap

Wolf's Trap

William D. Gagliani

A serial killer stalks his prey from the city to the woods only to find he’s not the only hunter in the forest.

A murdered friend. A descent into the darkness of the porn world. A cop whose tragic past includes a terrible secret and a horrible burden. A serial killer with depraved obsessions and a blood grudge.

They will meet in Wisconsin’s dark and chilly North Woods. But who will be the hunter, and who will be the hunted?

And how many innocents will have to die?

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