"Attack from the 80s" Book Review

Written by Jennifer Turner

Published by Raw Dog Screaming Press

attack from the 80s eugene johnson poster large

Edited by Eugene Johnson
2021, 266 pages, Fiction
Released on November 9th, 2021


If you asked me right now what my favorite decade is, I would say, “Who are you and how in the Hell did you get into my house?” And while the cops were cuffing you, I’d respond “The ‘80s.”

All kidding aside, I loved the ‘80s and think of it as the ultimate decade. We had MTV, malls, neon clothing, and soda wars gone but nowhere near forgotten. That decade was the bed of some pretty iconic historical moments from the Challenger exploding to the Berlin Wall coming down. And perhaps this was the only decade that people actually wanted to hear David Hasselhoff sing.

And the ‘80s were a banner year for horror; there were the cult movie classics like Night of the Comet and Sleepaway Camp. Authors like Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and John Saul thrilled the mainstream horror reader and made serious bank doing so. Jason and Freddy took over the theaters with a slew of films following in their wakes. A banner year indeed and that is why Attack from the 80s is a love letter for us little weirdlings who spent those years scouring book and video shelves looking for obscure horror media to lord over our less otherworldly friends.

Starting us out on the chopping block (pun totally intended) is "Top Guns of the Frontier" by Weston Ochse. Four close-knit boys find themselves inspired by the classic ’86 film Top Gun. While practicing to become the heroes they know they are meant to be, they instead stumble upon a dark world ruled by harpies and hate. This is probably is one of the most wholesome and violent tales that I have ever read, one moment I was all “How sweet.” and screaming “Kill it with fire.” in the next.

Another fun entry is "Snapshot" by Joe R. Lansdale and Kasey Lansdale. I’m sadly not familiar with the latter author’s work but I adore the former, he is definitely one of my favorite horror short story authors. The storyline follows Trevor and Gracie a “modern-day” Bonnie and Clyde who document their larceny with the ultimate in ‘80s photography, the Polaroid camera. But the thrill of the heist becomes the thrill of the chase when our duo stumbles into the wrong house. Gracie is a phenomenal character who naturally evolves from small-time crook to badass vigilante. Her survival and subsequent revenge is thrilling and worth the read.

My all-time favorite entry is "Catastrophe Queens" by Jess Landry. In this tale we meet Hazel, a B-movie horror actress working on a Nazi werewolf film. A mysterious ooze turns their fantasy into reality where our leading lady and her assistant, Tiffany have to fight their way to freedom. Hazel and Tiffany are so entertaining between genuinely funny one-liners and some impressive fight scenes. It’s a bummer to leave them behind and I hope to see them pop up in future works. I’m impressed by the writer and will be reading everything of theirs that I can get my hands on.

Not necessarily about "Catastrophe Queens", but we really do not explore the possibility of killer lingerie. Any person who has ever squeezed themselves into a corset or has suffered through thong underwear can attest to just how likely this scenario can be.

Attack from the 80s has it all: killer Nancy Reagans; ghetto blaster etiquette; cult horror film villains coming to life; and so much more.

Now put down my VCR and get the heck out of my house, Dallas is on.


Overall: 5 Star Rating Cover
Buy from Amazon US.
Buy from Amazon UK.
Buy from Bookshop.

This page includes affiliate links where Horror DNA may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Jennifer Turner
Staff Reviewer
Jennifer's love of horror began when she was five and her father let her watch A Nightmare on Elm Street. She is an avid bookworm and part time misanthrope who sometimes wonders if an apocalypse wouldn't be all that bad.
Other articles by this writer


Join Us!

Hit the buttons below to follow us, you won't regret it...