Author Spotlight & Excerpt: All Roads Lead to Terror by Richard Schiver



The horrors of the past meet the brutality of the present.

Four boys strengthen the bonds of their friendship, while taking their first hesitant steps into adulthood, as they face the brutality of an old, new world. They will be tested at every step in their journey, as they travel through a blasted land where the only hope is for a swift death followed by an endless sleep. Survival lay in the firepower they carried, coupled with their willingness to use it, and their ability to trust each other with their own lives.

The world has become a wild place filled with wild things, and into this new reality each of them had been born. Coming of age at the end of days, where savagery was the norm, and man’s inhumanity to man was on daily display. Where the only law was the firepower one carried and the only hope was for a swift death followed by an endless sleep.

Meat was born at the height of the Zombie apocalypse, upon his birth his mother took one look at him and pronounced him meat. He grew up in a reality where they were all nothing more than walking bags of meat, so in his mind the name fit perfectly.

Window, his best friend, is very quiet, and ever watchful with a quick hand. To him friendship was the most important thing in the world. His family had perished in the ruthless times after the awakening and his temperament had been forged in the fire that took them from him. His friends were all he had left so he watched over them with a jealously protective nature strengthened by that sense of invulnerability all boys his age embraced. Further backed up by a quick hand with the .44 he’d used to kill the men who had raped his mother.

The remaining members of this quartet are Einstein who had been born within the compound at Bremo Bluff after the apocalypse. Having spent his life behind the fence he had no first hand knowledge of how brutal the world has become. As his name implies he’s the smartest in the group, as well the most innocent. While that innocence helps to soften the ruthlessness of the other three, it will serve to drive a wedge into their friendship. On this trip he will discover just how terrifying the world has become.

The final member is Billie-Bob, one half of a set of twins who appeared outside the fence several years earlier. Your typical class clown whose mouth runs a mile a minute, if he isn’t sharing overused jokes about Zombies, he’s whispering the passages from a book his mother used to read to him when he was younger, a chant that provides him with a degree of comfort. Billie-Bob is unique in that at the tender age of eleven he has proven himself to be a natural born sniper with a willingness to use his special talent to protect his friends.

In Richmond they will be confronted by a savage cult of children who worship a creature of the night. An ancient being that feeds on the fear of its victims, delving into their innermost secrets, revealing half forgotten nightmares that lay like a rotting carcass at the heart of their souls. For these creatures, that were once considered fevered imaginings, are now awake in a world where the population that once served as their food source has been reduced.

Awake and very, very, hungry.

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Praise for All Roads Lead to Terror:

All Roads is frankly Stephen King’s Stand By Me, with zombies. But not too many. To call this a zombie novel would be a misnomer. First and foremost this is a coming-of-age drama, written by a man with a deft hand for characterization, set within a dystopian backdrop. — Mark Taylor, author of Witches: Tea Party

“It is tough to scare readers that are looking to be scared. ALL ROADS LEAD TO TERROR has characters with dimensions, flaws, and flawed relationships. The threat is fed well and builds fear in the characters that transfers to the reader. This story is a credit to the genre and worth your time.” — Jay Wilburn, author of The Dead Song Legend Dodecology.

“Despite the death and horror, I walked with these boys willingly as I read the book, listening to my lessened echo, glad to have made my way intact through to the end, and looking forward to the next book in the series.” — Fairness in everything

“It’s a very interesting tale that will pull you in and keep you turning pages and pulling for the main characters. It isn’t my usual story, but I really enjoyed it and rooting for the heroes. I wouldn’t advise eating while you read if you have a sensitive stomach–but I would recommend reading it. I look forward to the other books in this series!” — Cindy Cowles Amazon reviewer

*** Excerpt  ***

 All Roads Lead to Terror

by Richard Schaver

From the shadowy depths of the cooler came the sound of someone moving, the rustle of fabric, the thump of flesh against steel. Halting footsteps approached through the shadows as a shape slowly materialized like a ghost emerging from the night. Maria staggered into view, her flesh had become mottled and gray, cataracts filled her eyes, lending them a silvery glow, and her mouth was twisted into a grimace as she worked it in anticipation. She was nude, but none of them felt any longing or desire for the twisted form that presented itself .

The four boys stepped back as she staggered out of the cooler, her gaze fixed on Einstein as she reached for him with hands that had been twisted into claws.

“You know what you have to do,” Meat said as he handed Einstein his pistol, “give her peace.”

Einstein looked from the pistol in his hand to Maria, and back again as tears slid down his cheeks. “I can’t,” he said.

“It has to be you,” Window said as he took another step back, opening the distance between them.

Maria had stopped and stood staring at Einstein, her head tilted to one side much like a dog will tilt its head when its owner speaks to it. Her expression smoothed for a moment, it was as if even in her state she recognized Einstein, and was waiting for him to do what he must.

“I can’t,” Einstein said, handing the pistol to Meat and turning his back on Maria as he took several steps away. She staggered towards him, jerkily placing one foot in front of the other, her hands working in anticipation of tearing into warm, living, flesh. At the last moment she turned towards Window.

Without hesitation Window drew his revolver, his thumb pulling back the hammer with practiced ease, so fast that to the naked eye his hand moved in a blur. From the hip he fired, it was a shot he had worked on throughout his short life, and the round stayed true to his aim, striking Maria on the bridge of her nose and plowing into her brains to end the mockery that was her life.

Later, with time to reflect, they would wonder if in those final moments a small spark of what remained of Maria had not turned her towards the only one she knew who would put an end to the miserable existence that lay before her.

For the time though three of them watched as she crumpled to the floor, the fourth having done the only thing he could in that situation. Turning his back to let those who were more capable, finish a task he could never complete.

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Purchase the book:

Amazon US:

Amazon UK:

Read for free with Kindle Unlimited


About the author:

Richard was born in Frostburg, Maryland, in the winter of ’58’ and currently lives eight miles away. A five-year stint with the military allowed him to see what he wanted of the world. Married with four grown children and eight grandchildren, he and his wife provide a home to four pets that are spoiled beyond rotten.

In addition to writing daily he works a full time job in retail, and piddles around in his wood-shop making one mess after another when time permits.

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Richard can be found online at:

Follow Richard on Twitter: @RichardSchiver

Written in Blood is Richard’s personal blog where he shares his thoughts on writing, and whatever else that might strike his fancy:

He can be contacted directly at and would be delighted to hear from you.

Sign up to be notified of publishing updates and new releases as they become available. He promises to never share your contact info, nor will he swamp your inbox with unnecessary crap. He’ll also toss in a free copy of White Walker when you sign up:

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