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The Nightmare Girl (Fiction Without Frontiers)

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  151 ratings  ·  66 reviews
When family man Joe Crawford confronts a young mother abusing her toddler, he has no idea of the chain reaction he's setting in motion. How could he suspect the young mother is part of an ancient fire cult, a sinister group of killers that will destroy anyone who threatens one of its members? When the little boy is placed in a foster home, the fanatics begin their mission ...more
Kindle Edition, 256 pages
Published February 14th 2019 by FLAME TREE PRESS (first published January 6th 2015)
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4.26  · 
Rating details
 ·  151 ratings  ·  66 reviews

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Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
THE NIGHTMARE GIRL was actually first published in 2015 by Samhain. That publisher has since closed up shop and this book is getting a second debut with a far superior cover design, mid February 2019 by Flametree Press. In fact, it needs to be said that Janz is a prolific writer with a dozen or more titles in his back catalog--all of which (NEW and previously released books) will be available for "Janz Fans" with an aggressive release schedule throughout 2019.
It's very impressive and a sta
Char (Tacky Genre Buff)
This crazy cult story was a lot of fun! This was my first Jonathan Janz book, but it will not be my last.

This was a fast paced tale about Joe and his family, (wife Michelle and daughter Lily). I became a big fan of Joe throughout this story. Mostly because all of his problems started due to one good deed: stopping a woman from abusing her toddler at a gas station. Once he stops her and the police arrive, his whole life goes to hell.

I enjoy stories about cults and satanic worship and all that goo
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
When Joe intervenes as a young mother abuses her toddler in a gas station parking lot, he thinks he’s doing the right thing — he has no idea that he’s setting into motion a plot of revenge from a local cult, whose members will stop at nothing to punish Joe for his good deed.

Another Jonathan Janz title, another highly anticipated horror release for me — or re-release, as it were, since The Nightmare Girl was originally released years ago, but fell out of print when the original publishing house
Paul Nelson
Nov 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My second Jonathan Janz read in a week, both curtesy of Netgalley and I’ve got to say, the guy can certainly spin an entertaining and engrossing story, one that will keep you up way, way past bedtime.
The Nightmare Girl, first impression has a great cover and did the story match up, most definitely yes, this is a thrilling page turner that offers no respite whatsoever. One that before you know it you’re approaching the end and its then decision time, to sleep or not, my votes for not.
The start
Nov 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

THE NIGHTMARE GIRL begins with our main character, Joe Crawford, intervening when he witnesses a young mother physically abusing her infant son at a gas station. What he doesn't count on, is the fact that the abuser and her psychotic mother are part of a long-time cult dealing with the power of fire. Now, Joe has an entire sect of zealots out for his blood--and that of his own family.

The pacing of this book was fantastic--page turning every step of the way. There was tangible sense of dread
This hardcover edition is numbered 14 of 60 copies signed and numbered by Jonathan Janz.
Oct 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jonathan Janz is really hitting his stride lately and kicking out some quality dark fiction. The Nightmare Girl is a very good supernatural tale of sinister cults and old school small town terror.

Joe tries to be a Good Samaritan, but his deeds backfire in a big way when the child that he tries to help has some nasty blood relatives that want to see him dead along with anyone that stands in the way of their sinister plans. Now Joe has put himself and his family in the crosshairs.

There is a palpab
Jon Recluse
Jan 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
No good deed goes unpunished.

When a man steps in to protect an abused child from his mother, all Hell breaks loose. Mommy Dearest belongs to a cult of killer crazies, crazies who thrive on the kind of carnage and chaos only the truly insane are capable of.
A frenetic, fun read with a flair for overkill, I had to check to make sure I wasn't reading a Richard Laymon novel.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
Oct 31, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Horror Fans
I had recently finished reading another horror novel by Jonathan Janz Exorcist Road which truly scared the pants off me and had my heart beating out of control, so was keen to grab this novel of his also.

Whilst The Nightmare Girl did not have the pace or the punch in my opinion that Exorcist Road did, on it's own merits it's still a really good read and a good horror novel. I have but one complaint - I was not scared, or terrified BUT enjoyed the plot and the build up to the rather tense moments
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

When Joe confronts an abusive mother at a gas station, little does he realise the lengths the family will go to, to get the child back. When the mother commits suicide Joe soon realises that the religious group she was involved in will go to extreme lengths to ensure he suffers.

This is now my third book read by this author and he has failed to disappoint in all three. He has an uncanny knack of writin
Sep 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
I actually forgot I hadn't reviewed this great book by Jonathan Janz. The Nightmare Girl is a cautionary tale of good deeds gone wrong.
Have you ever thought about how simple decisions can have huge impacts on your life? Maybe you were at the right place at the right time to change the impact on someone else's life. In Nightmare Girl, Joe Crawford, a general contractor, is a guy with a good heart. He is at the right place at the right time and he does something to intervene when a mother attempt
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Joe Crawford and his family pull into a gas station and could not believe what they saw. A young mother was abusing her child. Joe went over to the young mother and stop the abuse to the child. The child was taken away by Social Services and put into a foster home. The young mother is a part of an ancient fire cult that will destroy anything that gets in it's way. The young mother swore to seek rev3enge on Joe and his family for his actions. This was a fast paced book with plenty of action. I wa ...more
Michael Hicks
My review of The Nightmare Girl can be found at High Fever Books.

Reading The Nightmare Girl, a few aphorism immediately sprung to mind. One being that no good deed goes unpunished, and the second being that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. And on this last one in particular…brother, it’s getting awfully hot in here.

Joe’s got a good heart, and a good family to match in his wife, Michelle, and daughter Lily. So, when he stops to fill up the car with gas and overhears a heated confro
Oct 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I liked it a lot!
Review to come.
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, horror, read_2019
If you read horror, read Jonathan Janz.

This year alone (2019) I've devoured 4 of his books, with The Nightmare Girl being the latest 5 star read. Not only are his books gloriously gory but they are loaded with interesting characters and entertaining plots.

In The Nightmare Girl, we're introduced to small business owner Joe Crawford. He's a family man trying to do best by his young family, steadily earning a living in construction. He's a good natured, honest, All American kind of guy who finds h
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Devoted husband and father, Joe Crawford, doesn't realize the dark and deadly path his life is about to embark on after he interrupts an episode of child abuse, while stopping for gas with his family. At first, Joe merely thinks the child's young mother and grandmother are drunken white trash. But then the threats begin, along with nightmares about his beloved family burned alive in an inferno.

With the aid of a wisecracking police chief, Joe tries to understand if Angie and Sharon Waltz are just
Jonathan Janz is in top form in this story. He comes out swinging (bad pun, read the book :-) to provide the blend of horror, suspense, dread and foreboding, humour, and generalized mayhem which keeps me coming back for more.
His skill with characters and his ability with pacing drew me quickly into the story and never let me go.
He's also one of the rare horror writers who succeeds in conveying a father's deep love for his family and children and the crazy extremes we who share his feelings could
Nev Murray
Jan 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 300-400-read, 2015
This review of The Nightmare Girl by Jonathan Janz is the result of a copy sent to Ginger Nuts of Horror in exchange for an honest review.

So all I see on peoples feeds at the minute is Jonathan Janz this Jonathan Janz that. All I could think is who is this guy and I must check him out. I was then delighted to get a copy of The Nightmare Girl to review for Ginger Nuts of Horror. Did I like it? Read on…….. (The fact I have since bought another 5 of his books might give it away though).

Joe Crawford
Savage Species suggested it, Exorcist Road seconded it, and The Nightmare Girl confirmed it: Jonathan Janz is a major new talent within the horror genre, and any fan of said genre that has not yet read him is missing out. Badly.

The Nightmare Girl gets right to it as everyday family man, Joe, intervenes to stop a mother wailing on her child in a public setting. This Good Samaritan act soon has significant consequences for Joe and his family, as the everyday man is forced to extreme lengths to ens
Cats of Ulthar February Weird Fiction

I am a committed-for-life fan of Jonathan Janz. This author started out perfect, and exceeds himself with each new effort. I found THE NIGHTMARE GIRL simply outstanding; I just read it yesterday, and I want to read it again, right now! Mr. Janz takes on a set of really horrifying folks, with sternly fixed elitist beliefs (and ugly attitudes) yet has time to delineate marriage, parenthood, and the foibles of both men and women--and do it all up right. Lo
Oct 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
That was AWESOME!
Zoé-lee O'farrell
In The Siren and the Specter, he scared the bejeezus out of me with the paranormal. In The Sorrows, he sent me to crazy town with the past and gore. In Old Order, he touches so very briefly on a cult, it is the baby book, the build-up to The Nightmare Girl, well this was just a little bit of everything with so much more horrifying actions with a cult.

Firstly, I have to say that this book does not disappoint, it does not relent and it is not for the faint-hearted! Even after I read the last line
Ken McKinley
Another top-notch offering from Jonathan Janz. The opening scene of The Nightmare Girl ranks right up there with Gage getting hit by the semi in Pet Sematary as one of the most gut wrenching moments in horror fiction for any parent to visualize. When Angie is losing it at the gas station and beating the hell out of a defenseless toddler, Janz succeeds in making the reader see red. Immediately, I loathed and despised the white-trash mom. I wanted to reciprocate the beatings she was dishing out an ...more
Kevin Lucia
Jul 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My favorite by Janz, hands down. The prose is tight, sparse, moves quickly, (read most of it in one day) and the tension for the first 75% of the novel winds you up tight as a drum, which I loved. I love mythology and folklore, and Janz did an excellent job incorporating those elements. I'm not a "monster book" guy, but I do love classic good v. evil tales, especially forces of ancient, mythic evil, and I found these "monsters" to be the most chilling of Janz's yet, because they came cloaked in ...more
Quentin Wallace
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another good one from Mr. Janz! I think Jonathan Janz is actually a very underrated horror writer, and hopefully he will be more appreciated in the future.

In this one we see someone trying to help out an abused toddler, and of course paying the price for it. Very good story with a ton of twists, and also plenty of gore. Just a little of something for everyone really, at least if you're a horror fan.

I was hoping at the end (view spoiler)
Mike Kazmierczak
Jan 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel started off differently than I thought it would. To be honest, I'm not sure exactly what I was thinking. Maybe something more mystical or supernatural. Something like a dream lover who turns bad and becomes a nightmare girl. Instead the first third, or maybe half, of the novel, the "nightmare girl" comes across with more of a "Fatal Attraction" vibe. Stalking and terrorizing is scary enough though. I had my own experiences with an ex-girlfriend who went more than a little off-her-rock ...more
Feb 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The "Year of Janz" is truly in full swing. THE NIGHTMARE GIRL is my third read from Janz, and I can't say enough about how much I enjoy his work. His skill presents itself not only during heart-pounding, savage moments of terror, but also within plot, pacing, and character development.

In each Janz book I've read so far, I've immediately been able to connect with one or multiple characters; I've found myself rooting for the protagonists, and hating on the sinister villains. In this particular st
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review coming soon to Cemetery Dance Online. Nutshell highlights: Page-turner, entertaining slowish-burn, good characters, loveable protag, at times Janz has a hard time trusting the reader. But I'll definitely be reading more Janz.
Joe Hempel
Oct 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Top of the Heap Review

Before I even get into the meat of the story, I have to say that Jonathan Janz reminds me of why I like reading. His work is sometimes disturbing, always has scenes of intense violence and a bit gory, but is always fun. The Nightmare Girl is absolutely no different.

Joe Crawford, a struggling contractor, seemed to be in the right place at the right time saving a child from the abusive hand of his mother. What it does however, is set in motion a string of events that turns
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Jonathan Janz is the author of more than a dozen novels and numerous short stories. His work has been championed by authors like Joe R. Lansdale, Jack Ketchum, and Brian Keene; he has also been lauded by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and School Library Journal. His ghost story The Siren and the Specter was selected as a Goodreads Choice nominee for Best Horror. Additionally, his novel Childr ...more