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12 February 2016 @ 12:31 pm
Love Canal and My Horror Novel BLACK CREEK  
Sometimes we talk about ourselves in the third person...



Black Creek, the twelfth novel from Buffalo author Gregory Lamberson, has crept onto the shelves of some Western New York bookstores, including The Book Corner in Niagara Falls, ahead of its official March 15th publication date. The novel is a survival horror yarn which pits the residents of Black Creek Village (formerly Love Canal) against a crippling snowstorm and a tribe of murderous creatures which have lived underground since the relocation of 800 families in the late 1970s following decades of toxic contamination in the area. The novel's publication is a timely one given recent investigative reports that residents of neighboring Wheatfield and North Tonawanda - some of them former Love Canal residents - now contend with contaminated landfill where toxic materials removed from Love Canal were once stored.

"I wanted to tell a contemporary cautionary horror story that utilized Love Canal as a backdrop and drew from my childhood memories of the Blizzard of '77," says Lamberson. "But I also wanted to a story about the people of Western New York. We're all survivors, on one way or another. We prove that every winter. The characters in this book are good people ad good neighbors who find themselves caught up in an extraordinary predicament that is both environmental and manmade. It's an extreme scenario, and a lot of them don't make it out alive, but the ones who do pull together and help each other. That's the Western New York I know."

In the novel, three snowstorms converge on Niagara Falls at the same time, isolating it from the rest of the world. A tribe of mutant cannibals - descendants of people who went underground rather than relocate after President Jimmy Carter declared Love Canal the worst manmade environmental disaster in the nation's history - take advantage of the monster storm to lay siege to the current occupants of Black Creek Village and neighboring Cayuga Island.

"When I learned that Love Canal had been renamed Black Creek in an effort to rehabilitate its image, the first though that came to my mind was, 'This is a horror story,'" says Lamberson, who spent one year researching the disaster and the Blizzard of '77. "Science fiction and horror authors often utilize real life fears as a springboard for fantastic stories. They tap into our anxieties and give us a way to beat them back. It's unfortunate - tragic, really - that the real life saga of Love Canal coninues."