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Shiver: A Chilling Horror Anthology Kindle Edition
- ASIN : B08M89PWSJ
- Publication date : January 11, 2021
- Language : English
- File size : 3344 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 257 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #298,164 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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A few notes on my favorite stories, although I want to mention that I enjoyed all of the stories immensely.
A Few Cold Tall Ones by Patrick Barb made me realize how absolutely terrifying it would be to be isolated in a frozen landscape with a monster. The idea of said monster emerging out of ice giant claw first...and the single eye in the fishing hole? Great descriptions. I felt like I was there.
How could I not love Mongrel by Mark Wheaton? I love dogs and love huskies. The idea of a brave husky fighting a monster to save her human? Perfection! The dog character of Asra drew me in and kept me caring...
Do They Know It’s Christmas by Christoper Wood had me thinking about contagious diseases and really good body horror movies. With some mad cow splashed in. I loved the ending...no spoilers...just read it!
Frozen Retribution by Laura Nettles had you feeling true sympathy for the mythical Jack Frost. Ironically my daughter and I had just watched the Rankin and Bass Jack Frost last month. And you sort of love him/hate him in that too. Nettles wrote his character exactly how I’d always imagined him to be...good intentions...then jealous...then winter horror.
Again all of these stories were perfect for a cold, snowed in weekend. As long as you’re nice and cozy inside. Maybe not so much if you’re ice fishing with a monster, a dog tracking a monster or two buddies fighting slabs of meat that are coming alive.
My favorite stories from this volume include Nicole M. Wolverton’s “Waiting for Winter.” The daughters of a group of “final girls” that survived serial killer attacks seem to be targets themselves. They decide to turn the tables and get ready for the man who’s coming after them. This one is fun and clever, but honestly I wish it had been stretched into a full novella.
Mark Wheaton’s “Mongrel” is another excellent tale. Sled dog Asra isn’t able to keep her person, Katie, from being killed by a mysterious and deadly creature. But she’ll get a second chance. (As is probably obvious from the fact that the main character of this horror story is a dog, there is animal harm involved.) Asra makes a wonderful main character.
Cristopher Wood’s “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” is a short, funny horror story of two men who go to work Christmas Eve to butcher and package meat. Only some of that meat has been contaminated. Mason McDonald’s “On the Frozen Waters Of Lake Namara” introduces us to a lake where many children have gone missing–no bodies to be found–always in the wintertime. When Ian dares his friend to go out on the ice, you know things won’t end well!
Michael Tichy’s “The Partisan” involves a sniper who goes after Nazi forces in Europe in the 1940s. A creature from childhood warning stories puts in a frightening appearance. Stephanie Rabig’s “For Sale: One Nightmare,” definitely gripped me! Natalie ordered “a nightmare” from Etsy on a whim while buying other things. Oh yeah, she definitely regrets that now!
Red Lagoe’s “A Cold Day In Hell” shows us Jean, who has stolen a car and is taking her baby to a supposedly haunted house in order to avoid the police. This one has some excellent surprises in it! Jessie Small’s “Bad Bunnies” has several delightful parts to it. The main character’s father, when asked by his child not to hunt bunnies, promised only to hunt the “bad bunnies.” Of course the child eventually recognizes that for the fig leaf it is.
Tiffany Michelle Brown’s “Addison House” is an urban legend tale with a chilling ending. Sarah Jane Huntington’s “The Snow Woman” is another urban legend with a literally chilling ending. Brennan LaFaro’s “A Shine In the Woods” is a terrifying creature-feature.
There are quite a few other stories that were good, but didn’t haunt me as much. One story had a beautiful plot, but the narrative details were all over the place as though they were too conscious of themselves. It was distracting, and it made some of the descriptions weird: “Al’s jumpy blood wiggled through their left fingertips to flick their headlights off.” Another story kept pointing out weird “coincidences” (without explaining what made them coincidences rather than just weird things going wrong) as though they meant something, which they didn’t seem to. And the tone of it was kind of flippant and off-handed rather than scary. Another story of the wendigo felt clunky and awkward, particularly when it came to dialogue.
Another urban legend story had a bit of a rough, tumble-on narrative and a protagonist who was annoying enough that it was hard to feel the horror of the ending. One story centered on a particularly bad drug trip, and other than the ending it didn’t really appeal to me; I’m not fond of surreal, dream-like narratives. I somewhat liked a story about two friendly skeletons in a bio lab, but it doesn’t really go much of anywhere. A story about a prison escape similarly got a bit too surreal at the end; I like to have some idea of what’s happening. A story about a winter sprite run amock killing people doesn’t entirely add up: it’s just when people seem to be noticing and appreciating the winter wonderland around them that the sprite decides to kill them for not noticing and appreciating the winter wonderland? Another surreal and confusing story seems to be about a very disturbed woman who’s supposedly caretaking for a mansion while the owners are away. I honestly have no idea what happened in that story.
Content note: standard horror blood and death fare.
This anthology is loaded with some very good stories, and I definitely recommend it.
"Waiting for Winter" by Nicole M. Wolverton: I love a good slasher, so this tale a group of daughters of former final girls banding together to fight off a mysterious killer sucked me in. My only complaint is that it could have been longer; I could have used more information about our main characters and their mothers' histories. I think more backstory would have been fascinating and would also have given the twists more impact.
"The Snow Woman" by Sarah Jane Huntington: A couple vacationing at an isolate cabin in Japan is bewildered when a woman shows up at their door one night to ask for sugar. There are no other cabins for miles, and, despite the snowy weather, the woman is barefoot and seemingly unbothered by the cold. Each night they stay the woman shows up again, her requests becoming more unreasonable. But do they dare defy her? Fast paced and spooky.
"The Partisan" by Michael Tichy: A resistance fighter in WWII Hungary returns to her small village for the first time in years. War has hardened her, and she desperately seeks a reminder of who she used to be. Unfortunately, there are more monsters than the Nazi's loose in the woods. Tichy's story is incredibly well written and genuinely heart wrenching.
"A Discovery" by Steve Stred: This story of a group of men trapped in a cave system with something terrifying is brief but packed a mighty punch. I sped through this one wanting to know what had our main characters so terrified.
"The Nightmare Man" by Jessica Guess might be my favorite in the whole collection. It's definitely the creepiest. I loved Guess's Cirque Berserk when I read it last summer and was thrilled when I saw her name on one of Shiver's stories. Dru is walking alone one night when she sees a frightening figure staring out from a window of her college's library. What's even more unnerving than the figure itself is that she's seen him before, in horrible nightmares she had as a child.
"Addison House" by Tiffany Michelle Brown: A solid story of a creepy old house and an urban legend. Brown's story doesn't hit any unexpected notes, but that doesn't mean it's not effective. The titular house's urban legend is definitely spooky, and I feel like the whole story would be excellent for relating over a campfire.
"A Shine In the Woods" by Brennan LaFaro: The final story ratchets up the tension as a family is threatened by something (or things) deadly lurking outside their winter vacation home. This one definitely ends the collection on a high note.
Other highlights include: "On the Frozen Waters of Lake Namara" by Mason McDonald, "The Lady and the Tall Man" by Lillah Lawson, "The Two Bio Lab Skeletons" by Ziaul Moid Khan, "For Sale: One Nightmare" by Stephanie Rabig, "Thaw" by Sara Mullins, and "A Cold Day in Hell" by Red Lagoe.