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Welcome to the Funhouse: A Horror Anthology Paperback – June 29, 2021
Enhance your purchase
"Mirrors" by Robin Grieve
"Candy Apple Smiles" by Christopher Robertson
"The Cyclone Sisters' Travelling Circus" by Angela Sylvaine
"Anna and Abby" by L. Pine
"The Prop" by Nikki R. Leigh
"The Viperess of Las Cruces" by C.W. Blackwell
"The Golden Tickets" by Roxie Voorhees
"Dance With Us" by Kelly Brocklehurst
"No Strings" by Jamie Stewart
"Family Outing" by Briana Morgan
"Mirrored" by Dave Musson
"Smile at All the Good Times We Had" by Spencer Hamilton
With a foreword from the editors.
"The Next Wife" by Kaira Rouda
There is no limit to the lies, suspicion, and secrets that can poison the perfect marriage in this twisting novel of suspense by USA Today bestselling author Kaira Rouda. | Learn more
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- Publisher : Blood Rites Horror (June 29, 2021)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 283 pages
- ISBN-10 : 191961320X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1919613208
- Item Weight : 13.3 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.06 x 0.64 x 7.81 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,001,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 (4.5 rounded up)
Carnivals and horror go together like tacos and Tuesdays…or peas and carrots if you’re into vegetables I guess. My point is, they just fit.
Maybe you’re wary of clowns or the thought of getting lost in a mirror maze gives you nightmares. Maybe you have a memory from your childhood about getting separated in the crowd or maybe you love everything about carnivals but still see the possibility for terror…when it’s shut down for the night, or for good…in the eyes of the shifty guy running the roller coaster…in the creaks and groans of the Ferris wheel as it turns. If any of this sounds familiar, this book is for you.
Welcome to the Funhouse is a collection of short stories, each by a different author, and there’s something here for every horror fan. The cover art, the forewords, and the order of the stories all come together to make a fantastic reading experience. Every story is well written and each of the authors involved deserves a place on your TBR.
I won’t review every story here, but I will highlight a few personal favorites.
Candy Apple Smiles - Part fantasy, all spine-chilling nightmare material. I want more!
The Cyclone Sisters’ Travelling Circus - Hunger Games vibes with a horrific twist. Loved it!
Dance With Us - Sometimes less is more. The possibilities are endless with this creepy tale!
Mirrored - Everything I want from a short story. Great characters, a unique plot, and that ending👌🏼
Smile at All the Good Times We Had - A perfect teaser sequel to ‘Welcome to Smileyland’. Now please gimme the Smileyland novel!
Blood Rites Horror continues to put out quality content and I can’t wait to see what’s next from them.
A wonderfully evocative start to this anthology, filled with vivid imagery. It reads as a nightmarish fairytale / poem, like Alice In Wonderland on the bad drugs. Get Tom Waits to narrate it & put it on a record. A++
CANDY APPLE SMILES BY CHRISTOPHER ROBERTSON
A tantalising slice of dark psychedelic horror, filled with a dream logic that makes sense somehow & conjures a great many visions. Another strong inclusion to the anthology.
THE CYCLONE SISTERS’ TRAVELLING CIRCUS BY ANGELA SYLVAINE
A sinister circus visits town & claims new minions with each visit. Can a girl protect her young brother from the Cyclone Sisters? This was a fun one with heart; a palpable sense of danger & it’s own dark mythology.
ANNA AND ABBY BY L. PINE
Family sticks together, until it can’t anymore. A fantastic tale, mournful & heartbreaking. A beautifully told tale of two sisters who work in the carnival & one sisters yearning for freedom. My favourite story so far.
THE PROP BY NIKKI R. LEIGH
This was a nice change of pace which starts as the story of a carnival worker with a self healing power but cleverly pivots into a budding romance between two young men who attended the carnival.
THE VIPERESS OF LAS CRUCES BY C.W. BLACKWELL
A beautifully written tale, although one with a plot device that I struggled to get on board with, but the writing was good enough for me to want read more by this writer. The titular Viperess is an interesting character & one I’d like to see more of.
THE GOLDEN TICKETS BY ROXIE VOORHEES
Another nicely written tale of young LGBTQ lovers & the hardships they face. A visit to the carnival could offer a chance to escape. The supernatural element here works well & is a personal fave of mine so bonus points for that & the nice subtle twist at the end.
DANCE WITH US BY KELLY BROCKLEHURST
We get our first abandoned amusement park in this story & of course it’s got some sinister surprises in store for a group of teens who decide to explore it. A nice bit of spook-a-blast fun.
NO STRINGS BY JAMIE STEWART
A father wins a strange doll for his daughter at the fair. I like how this story starts at the Fairground but the majority of it takes place afterwards at the girls home. Jamie weaves in a broken marriage, YouTube & demonic dolls in this fun , freaky tale.
FAMILY OUTING BY BRIANA MORGAN
A fairly simple tale of familial discontent framed around a trip to a water park. While the narrative didn’t 100% grab me, the writing was on point.
MIRRORED BY DAVE MUSSON
We are back at the carnival for another coming of age story involving the House of Mirrors. When the town bully chases a teen boy in there, he falls victim to the wrath of the mirrors, but the mirrors may not be done with the picked on teen just yet. An interesting idea, well told, though carnival fatigue is starting to set in a bit now.
SMILE AT ALL THE GOOD TIMES WE HAD BY SPENCER HAMILTON
We go out on a high note with this dual timeline story set in the fabled Smileyland amusement park. A great end to a really solid anthology & cant wait to dive into other Smileyland stories in the future
I finished WELCOME TO THE FUNHOUSE edited by Kelly Brocklehurst and Jamie Stewart from Blood Rites Horror today.
Normally, carnival horror is not my jam. For most of my life I have actually avoided carnival horror, to include Stephen King’s IT. I remember as an adolescent being absolutely terrified of Tim Curry’s rendition as the famous Pennywise in the original movie trailer and I vowed never to watch it. There’s just something SO unsettling about carnival horror for me.
That being said, I bought a ticket for this show and wow did I get my money’s worth. There are some bona fide creepy and disturbing stories in the fourth short story anthology from Blood Rites Horror. It is heavy on nostalgia and ties in emotional coming of age themes.
My favorite stories in this selection of tales are:
THE GOLDEN TICKETS by Roxie Voorhees 🎫
ANNA AND ABBY by L. PINE 👯♀️
FAMILY OUTING by Briana Morgan 🏊♀️
If you enjoy a good scare set against the backdrop of abandoned amusement parks, traveling circuses or water parks, look no further. 🎡
For the sake of ratings I am giving this book 4 stars.
Top reviews from other countries
This is a collection of carnival themed horror stories from a variety of up-and-coming indie authors, coming together to create an intense, disturbing, engrossing anthology.
Demonic clowns, evil dolls, carnivorous spiders, twisted mirrors and so much more can be found between these pages; the editors Kelly Brocklehurst and Jamie Stewart did a great job putting this together. Highly recommended!
Some amazing talent being shown in this anthology some new names aswell as some familiar ones in this collection. It’s great to see so many new Horror authors getting their spotlight moment.
This collection has everything thing you could want. I found some stories to be gruesome yet wholesome. Horrifying and disgusting.
It's hard to pick a favourite but depending on what you are after in the carnival/funfair horror genre, you will find it here! Unexpected twists, sweet tales and so much more! Definitely worth reading!