Top positive review
A fiery collection of horror!
Reviewed in the United States on September 22, 2011
I had been an admirer of ghost stories and the "quiet horror" (although I never used to know it under that name) ever since I started reading fiction. Violence, especially if that is described to be taking place in the commonest possible circumstances (e.g. within the four walls of a drab room occupied by a family not that different from mine), or which involves loss & pain to people who can be actually felt for in everyday life (e.g. someone's children or wife getting lost or murdered or tortured) is not preferred by me while trying to acquire that pleasing chill by going through printed words. Perhaps that is not a very literate thing to do, esp. since I have been reading horror for many-many years now. But this collection, often dealing with exactly those issues which I detest, succeeded in moving me and compelling me to read every one of them, often against my own wishes. After reading these stories, I was forced to conclude that the editor has been supremely successful in her objective: giving the readers an idea about how it really might feel while burning in the fires of own hell. I had gone through it during the reading!
The contents are:
1) Riding Bitch by K.W. Jeter
2) Misadventure by Stephen Gallagher
3) The Forest by Laird Barron
4) The Monsters of Heaven by Nathan Ballingrud
5) Inelastic Collisions by Elizabeth Bear
6) The Uninvited by Christopher Fowler
7) 13 o'clock by Mike O'Driscoll
8) Lives by John Grant
9) Ghorla by Mark Samuels
10) Face by Joyce Carol Oates
12) An Apiary of White Bees by Lee Thomas
13) The Keeper by P.D. Cacek
14) Bethany's Wood by Paul Finch
15) The Ease With Which We Freed the Beast by Lucius Shepard
16) Hushabye by Simon Bestwick
17) Perhaps the Last by Conrad Williams
18) Stilled Life by Pat Cadigan
19) The Janus Tree by Glen Hirshberg
20) The Bedroom Light by Jeffrey Ford
21) The Suits at Auderlene by Terry Dowling.
Many of these stories (among which, I would like to draw your attention towards those by Glen Hirshbirg, Lucius Shepard, Paul Finch, Laird Barron and Stephen Gallagher) have later got reprinted into different thematic anthologies and have found their individual (eminently justified) accolades. But I am, nevertheless, determined to knock-off a star from the rating, because that is the least that I can do after burning myself in INFERNO!