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Benny Rose, the Cannibal King

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4.23  ·  Rating details ·  125 ratings  ·  63 reviews
Blackwood, Vermont has one legend to its name—Benny Rose, the Cannibal King. Every local kid knows him and tells his stories, especially on Halloween. When a new girl moves to town in the autumn of 1987, the legend inspires high school junior Desiree St. Fleur and her friends to pull a Benny Rose-themed prank. A few laughs and screams, and they’ll have a Happy Halloween.

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Kindle Edition, Rewind-or-Die #3, 152 pages
Published January 23rd 2020 by Unnerving
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Average rating 4.23  · 
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Kat
Dec 30, 2020 rated it liked it
Book 3 in the Rewind or Die series, by Hailey Piper.

Really fun slasher story! There’s a great cast of strong ladies kicking ass on Halloween night and lots of cannibal gore. I definitely need to check out more from this author ASAP.
Sadie Hartmann
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Hailey Piper is quickly becoming one to watch (when I say that, I mean insta-buy).
I recently read THE POSSESSION OF NATALIE GLASGOW and enjoyed Piper's storytelling voice and flair for horror. BENNY ROSE, THE CANNIBAL KING will release January 23rd, published by Unnerving Press. (Take note! There's a novel coming, THE VERSES OF AEG late this year)
This is a story set in the 80s. A new girl moves to town and is invited to a Halloween Party. Piper captures the awkwardness of being the new kid in hi
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Michael Hicks
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror, bought
My review of BENNY ROSE, THE CANNIBAL KING can be found at High Fever Books.

It begins with a plan to play a simple prank on the new girl. It ends in fire, misery, and bloodshed.

Gabrielle is the new girl, and Sierra’s boyfriend Paul keeps stealing glances at her and commenting on how pretty she is. Needless to say, Sierra isn’t too keen on all this, so she and her bestie, Desiree, concoct a plan to prank her during a Halloween sleepover. What they don’t plan for, though, is Benny Rose, a local ur
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destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
This was absolutely fantastic — and it would be a perfect story to hold on to for your Halloween TBR! I've been meaning to read something of Hailey's for ages and I'm so glad I finally did because this did not let me down at all. Full review coming soon! ...more
Well Read Beard
Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-books
"Time to pay the piper." No seriously, It says that right there in the book on page 42. I got way more tickled at that line than I probably should have. It just really struck me as funny. That's it for the humor, the rest? Raw, gruesome, bloody, ravenous horror.

Sara Tantlinger calls it "an unforgettable terror" and she is absolutely right.
Gwendolyn Kiste calls Piper "a major new voice in horror" - I also agree - major, not budding, not developing - A major "knock your socks off" voice in the hor
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Andrew Fowlow
Oct 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Blackwood is a small community covered by a veil of darkness and gripped by the myths about an evil so terrifying that it's story has been told for generations. Halloween night is a special time of year for the residents of this little town in Vermont. Kids are dressing up, candy is being doled out and the undead stalk their prey. Benny Rose is more than a myth he's a local legend and on Halloween night he rises from the grave to ease his insatiable hunger for the living.

This is the perfect Hall
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Emily
Feb 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
"But another story wanted out. It was a spider in her mouth, its legs creeping past her lips. She could crunch it in her teeth, swallow it, but it was going to come back again someday."

Benny Rose, the Cannibal King, is the second novella I've read from Hailey Piper, and she is definitely an insta-buy author for me. I had so much fun reading this one.

I am so happy to see more horror stories with groups of female characters. It was very easy to get into this story, and I was excited to see what wo
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Tracy Robinson
Feb 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tbr-wishlist
OH MY HECK!!! You all need to read this book.
This review originally appeared in Rue Morgue magazine. It has been several months, so I am updating my review!

Rewind...or die. Unnerving Press has acquired an amazing lineup of novellas for 2020, all of which invoke horror movie nostalgia. Hailey Piper’s book, Benny Rose: The Cannibal King boasts a break-neck pace, believable characters, and a thrilling throwback to late 80s horror.
The small-town urban legend of Benny Rose is a living presence in Bl
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Steve Stred
Jan 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
** Edited as review is now live on Kendall Reviews! **

This is my third full-length read of Hailey Piper’s and she’s easily catapulted into a must-read author for me. I first fell into her dark worlds with ‘The Possession of Natalie Glasgow’ last year. It was a completely unexpected gem and one that totally caught me off guard. It made Piper’s name one that I would anticipate just what would come next.

Then Demain Publishing released book #33 in its Short Sharp Shocks! series – from Hailey called
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Joanna
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
It was my great pleasure to sneak an early read of this and it was so much fun. Twists the slasher tropes, portrays teen women as *gasp* humans, and almost reaches full villain empathy, but not quite. My only complaint is the almost.
Becca


Thank you to Hailey Piper for providing me with a copy of Benny Rose, the Cannibal King in exchange for an honest review!

Unnerving’s Rewind or Die series is shaping up to be phenomenal. All of the reads in this collection are meant to give horror fans a huge case of the nostalgia & the familiar feeling of renting a VHS tape at your local shop. The series will be released throughout the year, and I know darn well that I’ll be keeping up with them.

Benny Rose, the Cannibal King by Hailey Piper is o
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Sara Tantlinger
Dec 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hailey Piper continues to prove herself as an author to watch in her newest work, "Benny Rose, the Cannibal King." Through a sharp cast of characters that wonderfully shows teenage girls in a strong, relatable way, we are thrown right into an eerie setting where a local folk story haunts the neighborhood. As myth bleeds into reality, the reader is taken on a heart-racing chase, but the end is something you have to read for yourself. Sharpen your teeth and get prepared to take a bite out of Piper ...more
Melissa Nowark
Jul 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Benny Rose, The Cannibal King had so many things that I look for in a 150 page book. We had 80s nostalgia (I’m a 90s baby but what can I say? It hits different), a small town, legends and conspiracies, friendships, and badass female characters. Add a dash of queer to the mix and you have Benny Rose.

Halloween is a special time for Blackwood. With no mall, nothing to do, kids look forward to it every year. And ever year, kids die. They all blame Benny Rose. Benny Rose is a town legend dating back
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Karla Kay
Nov 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
"Benny twisted Paul’s head around and bit into his skull like an Apple."

The way Benny is described is horrifying, disgusting, and creepy! He's everywhere, around every corner, in every house. A cannibal! Holy hell! I seriously do not want to see this monster in my dreams! Why do I read this genre?!?! I LOVE IT!!

"The difference between the man who hurt her and the man she could hurt was who swung the hammer."

The majority of the main characters in the book are uber strong females. What they do w
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Jamie (TheRebelliousReader)
4 stars. This one is my favorite of the Rewind or Die series that I’ve read thus far. It’s really well written, the characters felt whole, and I loved the legend of Benny Rose. I could totally see this being a film if it were longer. This was such a fun read and I blew through it so quick because I could not stop reading, I had to know what was going to happen next. I’m interested in reading more by this author because I’m impressed that she was able to do so much which such a short novella. I n ...more
Audra (ouija.doodle.reads)
A perfect pick for halloreading, this Rewind or Die novella centers around Blackwood's urban legend: a mysterious figure called Benny Rose who comes out on Halloween to eat children.

Of course, there's so many stories about Benny Rose that no one is really sure if there's any kernel of truth left, but as the story posits, sometimes that doesn't matter. Fiction can become fact too.

This is an excellent novella. It has a perfect set-up, with the new girl in town hoping to make friends and the potent
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Thomas Joyce
Jan 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A perfect blend of action and drama, it is ready for the big screen!

Such an amazing read, I devoured it in one sitting!
The story suited the Rewind Or Die theme perfectly, cinematic in its storytelling and it would make a perfect movie for halloween viewing.
The characters were superb. From the initial descriptions of Desi's rebellious teenage nature and her friends wanting to haze the new kid, with just a little teenage drama and pettiness included, I was instantly invested in this group. I loved
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Lisa
Feb 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I don’t even know where to begin except to say I want everyone to read this book! It has all the ingredients for a perfect horror story—it’s ruthless and doesn’t hold back. It reminds me of watching bonkers horror movie as a kids, and the perfect 80s setting helps! It’s chock full of nostalgia while at the same time reminding that looking through nostalgia-colored glasses can be a dangerous way to view the world. I LOVE these lady heroes and how utterly badass they are. This book kicks ass and e ...more
Amber
An eerily enjoyable time
Jen (LOHF/Book Den)
Jun 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Review to come!
Suz Jay
Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
“Blackwood had one thing that no other town had in the world. Benny Rose, the Cannibal King, and all the stories that came with him.”

A group of girls have a Halloween sleepover and tell ghost stories about the infamous man who kills and eats kids, leaving not one morsel behind. Even though one of the girls believes she’s had a run in with the killer on the previous Halloween when two boys went missing, she’s not really scared of Benny Rose. But she should be; they all should be, because no kid i
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Laurel
Feb 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I'm excited every time I see Hailey Piper has something new coming out. Having fallen in love with her tense, terrifying possession story, The Possession of Natalie Glasgow, as well as her twist on a classic gothic ghost story with Invitation to Darkness, I have confidence that whatever trope or sub genre she takes on will deliver something entirely unexpected and wonderful.

Benny Rose didn't disappoint. A wicked look at a particuarly gruesome urban legend, Piper gives us brushstroke backgrounds
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Valerie (Cats Luv Coffee)
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
Welcome to Blackwood: Small town, nothing to do, bored teens. Ah, but near Halloween, this little dull as dishwater town transforms. With their own urban legend of Benny Rose, the Cannibal King, Halloween is "Blackwood's thing".

Piper excels at setting the stage for horror. No time is wasted in creating a brutal backstory, nor is there any anticipating action. Piper cleverly gives us just a taste of what's to come before she redirects our attention to the characters, a group of high school junio
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K.P. Kulski
Jun 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Piper is an expert at tension and rewarding that tension. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and Desiree was a heck of a character, I loved her so much by the end. Whether on purpose or not, the comparisons between the retirement community and current socio-political events were additionally enriching and gave me a lot to think about.
Claire Holland
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A good urban legend has a way of seeping into your bones and refusing to crawl out; Hailey Piper’s Cannibal King is certainly one of those that will be creeping into my mind, late at night and unbidden, for a long time to come. Hailey Piper’s titular beast is an unforgettable terror, rivaled only by the gutsy teens who dare to go up against him. Highly recommended!
Eliza Jo
Dec 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
From Sci Fi and Scary:

Desiree’s best friend is jealous of the new girl in town and wants to teach her a lesson. Halloween is just around the corner and Desiree has an idea: scary stories about the evil Benny Rose have circulated for years. Desiree and her friends can take advantage of them to give new girl Gabrielle a good scare. It seems like the perfect plan.

What Desiree doesn’t realize is that Gabrielle lives in Blackwood’s retirement community. The good news is that she has the house to hers
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Heather
Apr 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Hailey Piper’s Benny Rose, the Cannibal King pulls the reader into the town of Blackwood, Vermont, circa 1987. (This, in fact, was exactly when I was in high school while growing up in Vermont, so this story felt a little personal to me!) Gabrielle is the new girl in town (and in high school), and Desiree, Sierra, and Jessie set her up for a little Halloween prank with the help of Sierra’s boyfriend Paul and his friend Adrian. While the girls sit around in Gabrielle’s living room (her Grandma is ...more
N. Michael
Feb 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This novella really has everything I love. Hailey Piper brings us to Blackwood Vermont, shows us a deep world full of lore expertly built on supernatural mystery, and then gives us a tale of true terror.

The story follows a group of teens caught in the clutches of Blackwood’s very own monster, Benny Rose. Through their increasingly desperate and terrible encounter we see that there is more to the story than the slumber party stories suggest.

The story is brutal and strangely beautiful. The best
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Christopher Stanley
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
"...but twenty or thirty years ago, he would've been stronger. And how strong did anyone have to be to summon a demon?"

Benny Rose is the first of Unnerving's Rewind Or Die series I've read, and what a place to start. I remember the submission call: "Imagine your local movie rental store back in the 70s, 80s, or 90s, remember all those fantastic covers. Remember taking those movies home and watching in awe as the stories unfolded in nasty rainbows of gore, remember the atmosphere and textures."

Wh
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Dale Robertson
Mar 02, 2020 rated it liked it
I love urban legend stories so was eager to get stuck into this, especially after seeing a lot of people liking it.

Unfortunately, it didnt grab me as i'd hoped. The writing didnt flow very well in my opinion, i felt it used awkward phrasing and that kept detracting me from getting properly lost in the story. A lot of paragraphs were filled with multiple characters thoughts/feelings/views, rather than separate paragraphs for difference characters, which i felt would have made it a bit smoother.
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Hailey Piper is the author of horror novellas The Worm and His Kings, The Possession of Natalie Glasgow, and Benny Rose, the Cannibal King.
She grew up in a patch of haunted woods that filled her imagination with ghosts and monsters. Now she lives with her wife in Maryland where she haunts their apartment making spooky noises. In addition to the works listed on Goodreads, she's a contributor to Dai
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