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Awesomely scary book!

I bought this book last year and had it sitting there for awhile looking at me. I finally decided to pick it up and boy am I glad I did. Scared the jeepers out of me. I am a huge King fan and now a huge fan of yours. I can't wait for the next one. Until then all lights on in my house. I am still scared.

Kathleen Gerding



What a great read.

- Natalie



"The Calling" really sparked my interest and reminded me of a Dean Koonz thriller as I read it every day for a couple hours. You signed my book too at Ross Park at the art fair. It seemed more a mystery story than a horror story, especially what the Tree held in its strangeness and significance of what lie just underneath it. The dreams were more like sign posts without actually giving away what continues into the future anex the following pages. Really enjoyed "The Calling" without bracing for violence and sex as so many books end up doing while telling the story..It was tastfully and artfully written for all ages.

- Rita S.



The Calling is a 500-plus-page-long, character-driven, lyrically-fluid tale that reads like a haunted house story with a Halloween funhouse ride-type pace that sometimes gets stuck in narrative before it starts off again and pulls you further into the ride.  The way Strickler writes tells me he knows what he's doing, like he's written for awhile, though this is his first novel.  I've said that before with other premiere writers who have put out first novels, and this is a way well-over obvious indication the chap's not only got some real talent, but the ambition of someone who believes in his work and the patience and diligence to pull out of himself a story so epic yet dealing with so tight a group of characters in a small town setting.  Yes, it rides on Essence of King, of whom I'm certain is an inspiration to the author, but Strickler is his own voice here. 

Basically, with this story, you've got a family who moves to a small town in northern Michigan and into the one house nobody in that town wants to live in.  A guy who once lived there was very much into the Dark Arts, you see, and what happened there was so powerful that it wants to happen again, pulling the main character of the boy in the family further into intrigue, seduces him to discover just what it is that's happening to his family to find himself immersed smack down in the center of it.  As it turns out, important people in the town are involved, and we find the source of unspeakable evil to be from a supernatural gateway where all the protagonist pieces are shuffling together throughout the story to eventually open and bring about a vengeful assault from the demonic forces beyond.

Paul Strickler has an impressive educational and professional history which largely involves the side of the brain that's opposite the creative side, working high-ranking positions in areas ranging from CIA computer operations to aerospace technology, which accounts for a good head-on-your-shoulders literary expertise and actually stimulates creativity, is what it seems to me in his case.  I mean, a majority of computer geeks I know have a skill equivalent to a gerbil playing basketball when it comes to telling a story on paper, and Paul not only tells a story, but tells it well, and places enough dark and surreal visions in your head that it takes a few good nights of restless sleep to get over. 

Bravo, and keep up the great work, Paul…….

- Nicholas Grabowsky
Author, Halloween IV


I'm writting for two reasons, one to let you know I loved the book! The second reason was to let you know it's great to have someone from this state write about it.

- Chris



I just ordered a replacement copy of The Calling. A replacement copy, you might ask? Well...

My wife and I were staying on Mackinac Island this past weekend. The weather was cool and foggy - which proved a very suitable atmosphere for reading your book, I might add. After nodding off several times last night (not due to the material, but to my inability to stay awake and read all night as I would have liked!), I finally gave in to the allure of my pillow and set the book on my nightstand. However, the nightstand also held on its top the ice bucket...with its contents rapidly melting and condensing on the outside of the container. Who knew that much condensation could form?!! This morning I discovered the final 97 pages of The Calling had absorbed a good portion of the resultant puddle.

So, while my present copy is readable (thankfully, as I am only on page 288!), I await my new copy to add to my collection of Michigan fiction.

It has been a great read thus far, and that is right where I am dig back in and enjoy the rest of the book. 

You, my friend, have written a masterful work of suspense and I look forward to your future works! 

Todd Norton
Escanaba, MI


I was very impressed with the level of horror! The characters were so realistic and relatable that I found myself anxious and frightened for them while trying to remain optimistic that the "good" guys would prevail. It was completely enjoyable and I would love to read another book from this talented author.

- Denise Pepin
President, CBI Telecommunications Consultants


In short, an extremely well written, creative and vivid horror fiction novel. The epitome of a good horror. Hard to put down, and hard to sleep after doing so.  A great work and contribution not only to horror readers, but any reader. Truly a masterpiece.

I was blown away impressed by the book and look forward to reading your next project!

PS Its worth a lot more than $15.00

- A. Myers
Se7enth Dimension Reviews


A great weekend read. Easy to get into but harder to put down. I recommended it to our local book store for their Michigan authors section. I will be waiting for your next book. Thank you!

- Kim Gerding


I read your book, and found it hard to put down. It was very well written and easy to follow. The pace stayed fast-moving with no lull in the action. It showed much imagination, and a real talent for putting together a story line. I enjoyed it better than the last Stephen King book that I had read. Keep up the good work!!

- Michael Evans


Mr Strickler, you recently sent a copy of The Calling to Horizon Books in Petoskey and I took it home and added it to the many other galley books I am trying to dig through. However it seemed to climb it's way to the top and I bypassed other books to read it sooner. I'm glad I did! What a great book! I too am a huge Stephen King, Dean Koontz and Peter Straub fan so your style and story were right up my aisle.

- Bob Brill
  Petoskey Branch Manager
  Horizon Books


Hi Paul

I read your book and it was great!  It was a page-turner, which  I'm sure is feedback all authors love to hear.    Congratulations!  The Calling is worthy of mass distribution!  I'm looking forward to your next release.

Way to go, Paul!

- A new faithful follower:  Brad Elm


Fantastic Book!

Paul's gift of the pen is fantastic, he catches your interest and holds your attention. You can't put The Calling down. Being from Boyne City made The Calling even more intense, traveling the streets of Boyne along with Michael. It's a great read.

- Mar Jean Bennett


Great Read !!! Horror fans will love this book. The way the author describes the characters and scenes really gets the imagination going. Definitely a page turner, you are not really sure how it is going to end and has some nice twists. The one character in the book keeps you going back and forth, good guy, bad guy. Really well written. I'm hoping to see more books from this author.

- German Girl 5-star review


I started reading your book over the weekend . . . incredible! Damned good writing indeed.

- David Holmes


8 stars! The Calling is fresh and unique, written by an exciting new author Paul M. Strickler, who writes like a seasoned pro, Paul has a writing style all his own, unlike any I have ever read before. The Calling is a real page turner. He sets up and delivers some twists and turns that will have any reader unable to put it down. I would suggest you don't start reading it if you are in a hurry to do anything else. Take Paul M. Strickler's The Calling on vacation with you as long as you are not driving. I have heard it is great to take camping too.

- Peg Westergard


Great book! This is one of those books that left the usual chores left undone while I was off with my nose in the book. The wife could yell and I wouldn't hear a thing. I particularly enjoyed the fact that he would re-tell aspects of the story from an original view, thus ensuring that no detail would be missed and I wouldn't get lost in the telling. Its ending was surprising and pleasantly not what I had expected it would be. I am looking foward to reading anything else Paul M. Strickler would publish!

- Jimminycritic 5-star review