Top critical review
Some greatness, some filler
Reviewed in the United States on December 7, 2013
What's most impressive about this collection is the number of stories written by people involved in the production of the Hellraiser films: Peter Atkins (screenwriter), Barbie Wilde and Nicholas Vince (actors who played Cenobites), etc. There are also stories by horror director Mick Garris and genre titans Neil Gaiman and Steve Niles. However, the quality of stories is hit-or-miss.
Like many anthologies loosely based on a pre-existing mythos, this one is a mix of strong stories, crappy stories, and decent horror that probably isn't about the Hellraiser universe but managed to be close enough to fit the term "inspired by." Favorite stories include Barbie Wilde's "Sister Cilice," the origin of the so-called "Female Cenobite" written by the actress herself who played her in part 2. I also thoroughly enjoyed Sarah Langan's "The Dark Materials Project" and Mark Morris's "Mother's Ruin." I won't knock the lesser-known writers, but I will knock Richard Christian Matheson's flash fiction piece "Bulimia," which doesn't seem like a Hellraiser related piece at all. But I suppose having RCM in the book raises sales. Oh well.