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review 2019-10-14 18:45
IN DARKNESS DELIGHT: CREATURES OF THE NIGHT edited by Evans Light & Andrew Lennon
In Darkness, Delight: Creatures of the Night - Chad Lutzke,Tim Curran,Jeff Strand,Josh Malerman,Andrew Lennon,Glenn Rolfe,Evans Light,Mary SanGiovanni,Richard Chizmar,Ray Garton

Just like the first volume, (IN DARKNESS DELIGHT: MASTERS OF MIDNIGHT), IN DARKNESS DELIGHT: CREATURES OF THE NIGHT is an impressive collection of tales!


Creature features are one of my very favorite sub-genres of horror and in this volume, nearly every single story worked for me. There were creatures of all kinds, both great and small, both real and imaginary, (though figuring out which was sometimes difficult!). I can't get into every story within, but the ones that stood out the most were:


WHITE RABBIT by Tim Curran.


SCALES by Christopher Motz.


THE PEOPLE IN THE TOILET BY Mason Morgan. (What a way to kick of this anthology!)


SNAP by Kevin Harrison. 


INFESTATION by Mikal Trimm. (Roaches! UGH!)


RIVER OF NINE TAILS by Mark Cassell. (I got a BAD case of the heebie jeebies from this one.)


SURVIVOR by Ray Garton. (Most surprising tale award!)



HINKLES by Kristopher Rufty.


THE UGLY TREE by Gregor Xane (It's been a year since I read a story from this author. This one reminded me of how good he really is.)


THE GREEN MAN OF FREETOWN (It becomes clear at the end what the "creature" in this story was. When that happened, I wanted to cry. This was my favorite story in the book.)


THE WORMS TURN by Frank Oreto (This didn't turn out at all like I thought it would! Love when that happens.)


THE GIANT'S TABLE by Mary SanGiovanni. (The table doesn't belong to giants, but who it does belong to is scary as heck.)


I really wanted to write a little bit about each story, but time restraints are in play here. Even though I haven't listed every tale, (this isn't a table of contents, after all), that doesn't mean the ones that aren't listed weren't good. It's just that each of the those I've listed here were OUTSTANDING. I don't know how much more I can say except:


Highly recommended!





*Thanks to Corpus Press for the fine paperback copy they sent to me, in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!*

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text 2019-10-11 13:30
#FridayReads 10.11.19


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review 2019-10-10 18:45
Grind Your Bones to Dust - Nicholas Sparks

GRIND YOUR BONES TO DUST is a beautifully written, brutal horror novel, but it's also much more.


Separated into 4 sections, this book delves into creature feature territory, as well as philosophy, (does God exist? Is God insane? Maybe both, maybe neither?), religion, grief, loss, rape, sodomy, guilt and love. I wouldn't have thought that such a short book could cover so many subjects, but this one was full of surprises. Vicious and extreme horror really aren't my thing anymore, but this story was different. I think the beauty of the language used tempered the more brutal aspects of the scenes within, if that makes any sense.


Just when I thought I had mapped out the direction in which the story would go, it turned on me. I find that to be an excellent way of keeping the reader turning the pages. It certainly worked on me.


I'm finding it difficult to talk more about this story without spoilers. A few of these characters will remain in my mind for quite some time. One of them might haunt me forever, just because of how cold he was. Cold to every living thing, except for a talking raven that he befriended on his journey. He was so cold I'm surprised my fingers didn't get frostbite.


I consider myself to be a seasoned horror fan. For that reason, it's hard to discover plots I haven't come across before. It's hard to escape the same old tropes, final girls, haunted houses, unreliable narrators blah blah blah. This book DID escape them, and it escaped by using original ideas, beautiful prose, and by intertwining the normal with the most abnormal of situations I've ever come across. For this reason, GRIND YOUR BONES TO DUST gets ALL THE DAMN STARS.


My highest recommendation!


Get your copy here: GRIND YOUR BONES TO DUST


*I was provided an old school paper manuscript with illustrations by the author, in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

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review 2019-10-07 22:30
The Girl Who Hid in the Trees - Steve Stred,Gavin Kendall

THE GIRL WHO HID IN THE TREES is a creepy novella that left me with a serious case of the willies!


In no-where town USA there is a forest-McConnell's Forest. Years ago, Jason lost his older brother, (as well as his brother's gang of friends), in that forest, and the mystery has never been solved. Now that Jason and HIS group of friends are grown, they're tired of hearing the rumors and stories, and they set out in the forest to find the truth. Will they discover what happened? More importantly, will they survive? You'll have to read this to find out!


On Saturday, sitting beside my sleeping mom in the nursing home, something rare happened. I found myself with nothing to read! I can think of only a few things more horrific for me. (Having my eyeball poked out with a fork, for instance.) I found this story on my Kindle app and have been meaning to read it for some time, so I did.


I immediately found myself drawn in to Jason's life and what it must be like to be "the boy whose brother was murdered in McConnell's Forest." A stigma of sorts was attached to Jason, (as does happen in small towns), but it eventually wore off as Jason got older. I loved the relationship he had with Vanessa and I thought that portion was well written. Once he and his girlfriend shared the fact that they both had had "experiences" in the forest, the fun begins.


I thought at that point, everything came racing at me much more quickly than it had in the first half (or so), of the book. I wouldn't have minded a little time spent with the entire group of friends, so that I could get to know them a wee bit better, thereby making what happened to them even more horrific. (Also, I thought it was pushing the envelope that the parents would allow the kids to do what they did so... easily, but I can't get into much more without spoilers.)


Overall though, I thought this tale fun, and about what you'd expect it to be from reading the synopsis. I look forward to reading more from this author!



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text 2019-10-04 13:30
#FridayReads 10.4.19


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