THE X-FILES SECRET AGENDAS EDITED BY JONATHAN MABERRY

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Copyright 2016

SEEK AND YOU WILL FIND by John Gilstrap

Manassas, Virginia 2000 Mulder and Scully investigate a murder were the alleged perpetrator claims the victim disappeared. It leads Mulder to an opening to an alternate dimension.

PERITHECIA By Andy Mangels

A body of a man is discovered inside a grain silo in Oklahoma. The man’s head exploded. The investigation leads to a secret government facility conducting experiments on prisoners to perfect a fungus that controls the mind.

GIVE UP THE GHOST By Jade Shames

A murder investigation leads to a man who was able to develop a program that transplants his personality into the minds of others.

TRANSMISSIONS By Marsheila Rockwell & Jeffrey Mariotte

An investigation of a rash of men killing their families then committing suicide. The trail leads to alien transmissions.

DESPERATELY SEEKING MOTHMAN By Jim Beard

Mulder is stuck in a small town in Virginia. He gets involved with a woman seeking help from the mothman. She turns out to be a demon that skins people.

LOVE LOST By Yvonne Navarro

While investigating an incident at the Baltimore airport Scully runs into her old boyfriend that disappeared when she was a teenager. The man has not aged in thirty years and was a victim of an alien abduction, and the aliens are trying to get him back.

THANKS AND PRAISE By Joe Harris

The chess prodigy Gibson Praise from a TV episode is now grown up. He has mentally recreated the members of the syndicate and cigarette smoking man. They try to find Mulder and Scully who have gone in hiding.

BORDER TIME By Bryan Thomas Schmidt & Kate Corcino

A series of abductions and a murder occur around El Paso. Mulder suspects alien abductions and the two agents find out a cult working with the shadow government.

A SCANDAL IN MOREAUVIA, OR THE ADVENTURE OF THE EMPTY HEART By Nancy Holder

Mulder gets a message from an old flame in London. This leads the two agents to England and secret base run by the Syndicate.

STRYZGA By Lauren A. Forry

A series of murders at a summer camp in Pennsylvania lead the agents to a mutant monster and some strange kids that were victims of the Three Mile Island disaster.

AN EYE FOR AN EYE By George Ivanoff

A series of people in New Jersey have their left eyes taken from them. The trail leads to an optometrist and a possessed rag doll.

KANASHIBARI By Ryan Cady

Japanese-Americans in southern California are dying under mysterious circumstances. Mulder suspects a Kanashibari an old hag spirit that can suffocate people.

ALL CHOKED UP By Lois H. Grash

A homeless man is murdered. His body is crushed to death without any other marks on him. Later a maid to the CIA director is strangled. The trail leads to the Cigarette Smoking Man and use of smart clothing.

ALONG THE SCENIC ROUTE By Lucy A. Snyder

Mulder and Scully are coming back from an case and taking the scenic route. In a small town in North Carolina people are seeing images of angels and giant horned snakes. The cause may be from tainted ham at the local farm.

GRANDMOTHER BLACK HANDS By Weston Ochre

On an Apache Indian reservation the agents uncover an old curse of Grandmother Black Hands. A massacre that occurred a century ago has a curse where once a year the kids are taken over and kill.

So this is the third anthology series. I liked all the stories and hope to read more.

THE ESSENTIAL DOCTOR WHO THE MASTER EDITED BY MARCUS HEARN

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Copyright 2015.

The Master the renegade Time Lord that is the Doctor’s greatest enemy. Back in 1971 Terrence Dicks and Barry Letts the script editor and producer came up with introducing a new opponent for the Doctor. They decided on a Professor Moriarty type character who was also a Time Lord and an equal to the Doctor. Thus Roger Delgado stepped in an gave his iconic performance during the Pertwee era. Later other actors would step into the part Anthony Ainley, Eric Roberts, John Simm and the current incarnation by Michelle Gomez. The book has a summary of each episode that the Master appeared in. These include the radio, comics and books. There are biographies on each of the actors that played the Master. Also interviews with Terrance Dicks(creator),Katy Manning?(Jo Grant), Richard Franklin(Captain Mike Yates),Mathew Waterhouse(Adric),Gary Russell, and Michelle Gomez the current Master(or Mistress as she now calls herself).

I finally got around to reading this Christmas give from a friend at work. I am a big fan of Doctor Who and I found this to be a very interesting and informative book. Definitely a good source for anything about the Master.

THE X FILES THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE EDITED BY JONATHAN MABERRY

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Copyright 2016.

Volume two in an anthology of X-files short stories.

DEAD RINGER By Kelly Armstrong.

1993 Comstock Pennsylvania. A young boy disappears from his home and winds up seventy miles away with no memory. So is this an alien abduction or some sinister evil fairy. The truth may lie with a woman that had a similar experience when she was a child. Interesting story to start the anthology with.

DRIVE TIME By Jon McGoran.

2016 Cameron Massachusetts. A top secret experiment in time travel is taking place. An intruder specifically asks for agent Mulder. He claims to be from the future and was sent back by a rival to kill the professor at the institute so the rival can get credit for inventing time travel. His plan is to send back the same assassin from different periods of his life thirty-five times so thirty-five men can assault the experiment. The oldest of these returnees wants to stop it because the man that sends them back becomes a cruel tyrant. This is a fascinating idea with a time travel twist.

BLACK HOLE SON By Kami Garcia.

1977 Chilmark, Massachusetts. A teenage Fox Mulder must endure the horrors of high school and his bickering parents. He hears from a friend about a young woman that was found whose disappearance was similar to his sister. He sneaks into the mental hospital were she’s at. He doesn’t get much information but has his first encounter with the Cigarette Smoking Man. A fascinating idea to explore Mulder as a teenager. And he gets his first encounter with CSM man although he doesn’t remember because he is drugged to forget.

WE SHOULD LISTEN TO SOME SHOSTAKOVICH By Hank Phillippi Ryan.

2017 Washington DC. A recently married Dana and Fox are moving into a new apartment. They receive a gift of a painting from a Russian artist that may have a clue to aliens. A strange story that has the two married in the future with a daughter on the way. Contradicts this years episodes in that Dana’s mother is alive when she dies this season.

MUMMIYA By Greg Cox.

1996 Bellingham, Washington. A homeless man stabs what he claims to be a mummy that attacked him. An autopsy reveals a young woman that was recently mummified by the same procedures the ancient Egyptians used. The trail leads to her boyfriend who is obsessed with Egyptology and hoping to bring back his terminal girlfriend. Another interesting story.

PHASE SHIFT By Bev Vincent.

1996 Houston, Texas. A family is trapped inside their home by a mysterious force. It looks like a possible alien experiment. A ok story with an implied gruesome ending.

HEART By Kendare Blake.

1995 Holmdel, New Jersey. Arthur Linninger is a mild mannered man who has a heart attack. The transplanted heart he received once belonged to a mobster. Now he starts taking on the characteristics of the mobster. Two FBI agents investigating murders has him worried. Other transplant recipients are found to have murdered the men responsible for the mobsters death and could Arthur be next. An OK story.

MALE PRIVILEGE By Hank Schwaeble.

2006 Horn, Arkansas. A strange condition causes all the men in Horn to suddenly develop large breasts. The investigation leads to a witch, a dragon and an ancient curse that involves the sacrifice of a young man. A good story.

PILOT By David Liss.

1996 Washington D.C. Mulder and Scully are investigating reports of strange lights. The witness seems to know the two agents and has an offer for them. He claims to come from an alternate reality where the X-files is a TV show. He gives them the pilot episode and wants money for all the others. This was a unique idea and I enjoyed this story.

ROSETTA By David Sakmyster.

2014 Arcadia, South Carolina. Mulder and Scully are there to meet a man that has proof of aliens from a recent probe landing on a comet. They may come face to face with genuine E.T.s. A interesting story but has a major error in X-file continuity. The Lone Gunmen are in it and they died some fifteen years ago.

SNOWMAN By Sarah Stegall.

2001 Mt. Rainier, Washington. Agent Doggit is approached by his former Marine commander for help. A covert team testing communication systems have disappeared. The two find Mulder also investigating and the bodies of the team. They seemed to have fled in terror and died of exposure. Now the three are stalked by what appears to be Sasquatch. Nice to remember someone remembers Doggit and I always love a good Sasquatch story.

VOICE OF EXPERIENCE By Rachel Caine.

1993 Washington D.C. Mulder meets an old flame on his lunch break. She is soon found to commit suicide. His investigation takes him to a famous author that may be stealing life energy from victims to write successful books. Another good story.

XXX By Glenn Greenburg.

1999 San Fernando Valley, California. Two porn stars have their heads suddenly explode while on set. The investigation leads to an anti-porn activist using an alien virus but the truth may be with the telekinetic abilities of the star porn actress Ashley Ford. An interesting story that lead to an unexpected ending.

FOUNDLING By Tim Waggoner.

1997 Ambergris Falls, Ohio. The inhabitants of a small town vanish without a trace. Mulder and Scully investigate and find a baby on the street. They have to fight ghostly figures and a mercenary employed by a billionaire. This was a fascinating story.

WHEN THE COWS COME HOME By David Farland.

2000 Gallup, New Mexico. A rancher is gored to death by a bull. Strange lights, crop circles and mutilated cow corpses point to aliens. The investigation take them to a Navajo witch doctor. The shortest and weakest story in the anthology.

Now two new books in a row. This one came out in February so it is probably the newest I ever did from this blog. Volume two of the anthology series was as enjoyable as the first. Once again stories with aliens, ghosts, time travel, alternate realities, the Lone Gunmen, Doggit, government coverups and conspiracies and plenty of general weirdness.

I even got a message from the editor. Makes me feel real important. He says he’s working on a third volume titled “Secret Agendas”. Something to look forward to.

THE X-FILES TRUST NO ONE EDITED BY JONATHAN MABERRY

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Copyright 2015.

A new anthology of X-files stories.

CATATONIA by Tim Lebbon.

1994 Lynott Sound, Massachusetts. Young teenagers are found in a catatonic state. The cause seems to be a mysterious blue light of possible alien origin. The US army also has an involvement. The first story was a fairly good one to start off the book.

THE BEAST OF LITTLE HILL By Peter Clines.

1995 Little Hill, Missouri. Mulder decides to stop over after an assignment to the town of Little Hill the sight of an alleged UFO crash back in 1969. Two farmers have tourist trap exhibits of captured aliens that look very fake. A feud between the two farmers results in one of the exhibits actually coming to life an terrorizing the town. This was a good story that captured the characters and feel of the series.

OVERSIGHT by Aaron Rosenburg.

1994 Washington, D.C. Assistant director Walter Skinner is faced with the X-files being closed by an agency bean counter for being a waste of money. This accountant is later attacked at home by a mysterious attacker who can cause total darkness. Now Skinner is confronted with his own X-file to solve if he wants to save both the accountant’s life and the X-files. An interesting story featuring Skinner as the main character.

DUSK By Paul Crilley.

2015 Castle Bluff, New Hampshire. Young girls are disappearing by what is reported as a vampire character from a popular book series. The author of the series lives in the town and has a connection to his father who was a Nazi that was conducting experiments on a real vampire. This is a really good story that is obviously satirizing the Twilight Series and our modern pop culture in general.

LOVING THE ALIEN By Stefan Petrucha.

1997 Florence, South Carolina. Mulder has gone missing while investigating sightings of UFOs and an alien. The investigation leads to a disgruntled former CIA employee involved in mind control experiments that lost his job because of Mulder. This was a fascinating story that had a totally unexpected ending.

NON GRATUM ANUS RODENTUM By Brian Keene.

1994 Washington, D.C. Walter Skinner comes across a local news story that Mulder is investigating on the side. He notices in the picture an old buddy from the Vietnam War. This buddy was a tunnel rat in the war and Skinner saved him from what looked like a human rat. Now that rat type creature is back in the sewers of Washington. Another Skinner story and a very interesting one. One we get a glimpse of him as a young man back in Vietnam.

BACK IN EL PASO MY LIFE WILL BE WORTHLESS By Keith R.A. DeCandido.

1994 El Paso, Texas. Special agent Jack Colt has been investigating a serial killer. Each time he thinks he catches the killer a new suspect appears. Now Mulder and Scully are assigned to help and Mulder of course suspects a shapeshifter. This was a good story.

PARANORMAL QUEST By Ray Garton.

1997 Redding, California. A woman’s heart explodes from her chest. This woman was part of a family whose haunted house is being filmed for the popular reality series Paranormal Quest. The investigation leads to a nondescript female production assistant that has telekinetic powers. She was being used by the show’s producer and now her powers are out of control. A good story that satirized those paranormal reality series.

KING OF THE WATERY DEEP By Tim Deal.

2000 Saudi Arabia. A consulate worker disappears with a friend on a boating trip. While the local authorities suspect Somali pirates there are reports of a fish-man that is involved which is why Mulder and Scully are assigned the case. The investigation leads to an ancient Sumarian cult that worships the fish man and demands human sacrifice. An interesting story that takes place in an a new setting.

SEWERS by Gini Koch.

1990 Buena Vista, California. Reports of an alligator man that is kidnapping young boys. It leads to a similar X-file case from the 1950’s. A story before Mulder met Scully and was on the X-files.

CLAIR DE LUNE By David Benton and W.D. Gagliani.

1994 Ottawa, Canada. Mulder and Scully are escorting a mob witness back to the states to testify and must stop at an isolated motel in a snowstorm. The prisoners goes on about the danger from a werewolf which turns out to be true. The authors dedicate this story to the memory of Charles Grant. Sad to hear he pasted away. I know I was hard on him and but I do have fond memories of reading his books. I suppose its ironic that this is my least favorite story in the anthology.

IT’S ALL IN THE EYES By Heather Graham.

2009 Purgatory Pass, Massachusetts. Workers at a Halloween novelty shop are killed by life size dolls of the popular Caitlin Corpse. The investigation leads to aliens that crash landed and are looking for bodies to inhabit to survive. A creepy story that has the feel of an X-files episode.

THE HOUSE ON HICKORY HILL By Max Allan Collins.

1997 Banewich, Massachusetts. A popular author moves his family into a haunted house to write a book about it. Years ago a murder occurred there and now strange sightings and blood from the walls occur. The older daughter is kidnapped and clues point to the deceased murderer. This was a fascinating story with a twist ending that I never saw coming.

TIME AND TIDE By Gayle Linds and John C. Sheldon.

2000 Portland, Maine. On a small tourist island three teenagers go missing. A man calls Mulder that is monitoring a passage to another dimension. Now Mulder and Scully go to this other dimension to rescue the teens from the creature that lives there. This was an interesting story but it was out of character. Mulder is actually actively covering up this phenomenon which just doesn’t fit the character.

STATUES By Kevin J. Anderson.

1995 Death Valley, California. A prospector arrives at a hospital and quickly turns to stone. The trail leads to an artist who found a cave with water that turns organic tissue to stone. He has been turning people to stone and selling it as works of art. They saved the best for last. It was great to read another Kevin Anderson story.

Wow actually reading something fairly new. Anthologies are usually hit or miss with stories and I suppose that is the case with this book. The stories even the weakest ones were entertaining and it was great to read some new stories. There was aliens, UFOs, vampires, werewolves, ghosts, monsters, government cover ups, Cigarette Smoking Man, Krychek(remember him?), CIA mind control, Nazis, and general weirdness. Definitely for any fan of the series.

THE X FILES SKIN BY BEN MEZRICH

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Copyright 1999.

A middle aged professor gets a skin transplant for a burn injury. Right after he goes completely nuts. Gaining superhuman strength and trashing his hospital room and crushing with his bare hands the head of a nurse. Such a strange event attracts the attention of Mulder who is always on the lookout for bizarre cases. The investigation leads to a John Doe who died in a car accident and had his skin accidentally harvested by mistake. The trail leads to a biotech firm. Unraveling the threads lead to the founder who started out treating napalm victims at a MASH unit in Thailand during the Vietnam war. A trip to the sleepy fishing village in Thailand results in a confrontation with a plot to create an army of mindless drones and a legendary Thai monster known as the “Skin Eater.”

The final book that was released during the run of the TV series is by a new author. Ben Mezrich has written an interesting story. I wonder if he has a medical background because he seems to be very knowledgeable about skin transplants. He did do considerable research about the subject and I learned that skin is the largest organ in the human body. It was refreshing to get a new author’s perspective on the series and he did a good job.

So the books for this series started out weak with Charles Grant but picked up steam with Kevin Anderson. Ben Mezrich ended the run on a positive note. Now since the series has come back so have new X-files books which we will look at next.

THE X FILES ANTIBODIES BY KEVIN J. ANDERSON

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Copyright 1997.

A security guard at the Dymar research facility is found dead from a fatal disease. The Dymar was recently destroyed by arson from animal rights activists killing the head researcher and his assistant. The strange nature of the death qualifies it as a X-file and so Mulder and Scully go to Oregon to investigate. Their investigation soon points that animal rights activists were a cover for the shadow elements of the government who were really responsible for the fire. They wanted to suppress a new nanotechnology that could be the key to immortality. Now the lab assistant has survived and is infected with defective nanobots that are killing him and infecting anyone he comes into contact. The key to the cure is the researcher’s son who was cured of his terminal cancer and hiding out in a cabin in the Oregon wilderness.

The third and final Kevin Anderson book in the series is another solid story. He managed to cover a different X-files theme in each of his books. The first dealt with the paranormal. The second with aliens and this one with science gone horribly wrong. Sort of all the major themes from the TV series. Once again there was well researched information on nanotechnology showing he puts a lot of effort in this stories. His books were all unique and kept within the mythology that the series established. This books were a great improvement from the Charles Grant ones.

THE X FILES RUINS BY KEVIN J. ANDERSON

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Copyright 1996.

An archeological expedition to the Yucatan has discovered a Mayan city deep in the jungle. The city of Xitaclan has been undisturbed for centuries. While exploring the team lead by Cassandra Rubicon disappears. The father of Cassandra convinces the FBI to investigate and naturally the FBI chooses Mulder and Scully. Mulder being the more imaginative one thinks that there is an extraterrestrial connection with ancient astronauts. Scully tends to believe in a more mundane explanation.

When they arrive in the lost city they run into a whole boatload of conflict. A shady guide who deals on the side in stolen artifacts. Superstitious natives that still believe in blood sacrifice. A police chief secretly in charge of a Yucatan secessionist terrorist movement. Sightings of mythical feathered serpents in the jungle. A strange alien spacecraft inside the pyramid. After finding the team murdered and dumped in a sacrificial pool all hell breaks loose when a covert U.S. military commando group shows up to blow up the city to stop a mysterious radio signal emanating from the pyramid. It ends in a battle between the commandos and the secessionist with a visit by the mysterious aliens.

The second book by Anderson is even better than the first. I think this is my favorite X-files book. The exotic location of the Yucatan was an excellent setting. Throw in aliens and government conspiracy and you have a classic X-files story. The history and culture of the Yucatan was well researched and informative. Lots of fast paced action and an interesting story that keeps the mystery going makes this a worthy book in the X-files series.
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