Wednesday, April 20, 2011

No Escape by Anthony Izzo

It started with an experiment gone wrong...

A ship carrying the military's latest weapon in the war on terror ran aground...

Now it's loose...

Jack Hammond is an ex-Special Forces soldier who has returned from the war. He's looking to take a peaceful island vacation with his family and forget about the horrors in Iraq and Afghanistan. Soon after the Hammonds' arrival on the island, a military ship runs aground. It's carrying the military's latest weapon in the war on terror, bloodthirsty creatures trained to kill terrorists. And now they're loose. Soon bodies begin piling up, and a clandestine military unit arrives on the island to deal with the threat. Jack must battle the creatures and hostile soldiers to get his family off the island before it's too late. Before there's no escape.

Anthony Izzo is the author of four novels: CRUEL WINTER, EVIL HARVEST, THE DARK ONES, and NO ESCAPE. Tony has a B.A. in English from D'Youville College in Buffalo, NY. When not horrifying readers, Tony enjoys drawing, playing guitar, and playing pool. Find him online at

I really tried to put the pedal to the metal in terms of the pace of No Escape. I think readers will like that. It doesn't let up on the action.

I had sold three books to a legacy publisher, and after they decided not to buy any more horror novels, I decided to go independent. I love the creative freedom of it.

I typically write 3-4 pages a day, usually on a netbook. My son has a number of medical appointments, so I usually get a lot of writing done in waiting rooms.

A first draft typically takes me 4-6 months.

No Escape was inspired by a family vacation to the Thousand Islands. We were staying in a cabin at Robert Moses State Park. I often play 'what if' in my mind to come up with story ideas. I thought: "What if something trapped us on this island? Something malevolent?" The story took shape from there.

Excerpt from No Escape:

Jack approached the RV, a big Gulf Stream with a blue stripe across its side. The driver’s seat was empty. He climbed up into the cabin. Looking down, he saw a pair of blue jean-clad legs and their wearer. It was a pudgy bald man with a Syracuse University tee shirt on. It bore dark stains and Jack looked at the man’s neck and saw the source of them: blood leaked from the side of the man’s neck. Jack moved forward, knelt down next to the man. The guy had given it up.

Overhead, thunder crashed, and then the hiss of rain began to patter on the RV’s roof. Jack moved back throughthe RV, passing through the kitchenette. There was a smudge of a fluid that he knew could only be blood on the Formica tabletop. In the back, in a bunk, he saw someone lying under a blue comforter.

He approached, heart pounding, aware that even in the darkness of the vehicle, he didn’t see the blankets rising and falling. “Hey,” he said. “You okay?”

No answer came.

He paused for a moment, half-expecting the form under the blanket to pop up like a funhouse boogeyman. The person under that sheet was dead, he was sure of it. In Afghanistan, he’d seen his share of the dead, some with faces missing, others burned so badly you wouldn’t guess they were human at one time. This person wasn’t sleeping.

He moved forward and in one motion pulled back the comforter. He found a woman with a tee shirt that matched the dead man’s. At first Jack thought the woman was smiling, but then he realized her lips had been cut away and jagged slashes made in the cheeks. He looked at her hands and saw that the fingers had been removed, the stumps bloody and ragged. He didn’t see a mortal wound, but it was there somewhere.

He scanned the RV. Dots of blood stained the carpet. It didn’t look as if there’d been a struggle. The only sign of a mess was the blood stain on the table. Jack would’ve thought there’d have been papers and clothes strewn about, things knocked over. What the hell happened?

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