Horrors! 365 Scary Stories – A Full Year of Horror
08/12/2017 – 08/18/2017
The horror short-short isn’t easy to master, but more than 100 of the genre’s critically acclaimed authors & hottest up-&-comers have taken a stab at it in Horrors! 365 Scary Stories, an anthology that contains a short tale for every day of the year. Steve Rasnic Tem, Wm F. Nolan, Tom Piccirilli, Yvonne Navarro, Peter Atkins, Brian Hodge, Martin Mundt & 166 others give you short, sharp shocks.
If you missed the first post you can find it here.
I’m very interested in what this week brings. The summer is flying by quickly and is really bumming me out. I think I dread school starting more than my son does. I dislike getting up early. Especially in the cold. So let’s enjoy some scary stories while it’s still warm out.
Only Death, Sir – Peter Atkins
A king finds his servant only has one response to the king’s questions. Everything always ends the same.
If the title weren’t what it was it would be hard to tell what exactly the story was about. So, it wasn’t bad but a story’s subject shouldn’t depend on the title.
Parasite – Greg McElhatton
Marissa has been feeling strange for a while now. First throwing up, then pain (which she brushes off as a nightmare). Then one terrible night things start poking out of her body. The doctors tell the roommate it’s hormonal changes from pregnancy. We’re left wondering, along with the roommate, just what it will be.
Eh. It was ok but there’s no real explanation to it. There’s nothing that says where she could have gotten the ‘parasite’ from, pregnant or otherwise.
The Park – Phyllis Eisenstein
Sandy has always been told not to walk through the park at night. There are all sorts of creeps out there, her mother warns. But sometimes it’s not the humans you have to watch out for. It’s the trees.
I don’t know why but stories about killer trees are creepy. and this one is quite creepy.
Parlour Games – Lawrence Schimel
Peter owns the only legitimate funeral parlour. After death, unless you pay extra, your corpse could be re-animated and used as cheap labour. There’s only one competitor but he’ll soon be taken care of. Peter has a reputation to maintain.
A very good, and more than a little horrifying, story.
Patient Fate – Tom Piccirilli
A hitch-hiker waits patiently by an overpass, waiting for a driver to stop. But this girl is waiting for someone in particular, even if it’s not the right driver. And there’s a long line of them.
Piccirilli’s stories are sometimes hit or miss with me. This one was excellent. I’m a sucker for a good phantom hitch-hiker story.
Penance – Barry Hoffman
Shana is an old, arthritic nurse…who’s only twenty four. Her penance for murdering her own child is to endure the pain of withdrawals and other ailments that a crack baby has to endure. She takes it from them. While what she did can never be undone it’s the penance she will serve until she can die in peace. And another will take her place.
I honestly don’t know what to say about the story. It was amazing and, if I’m being totally honest, also made me tear up a bit. And that’s hard to do.
The Perfect Baby – Linda J. Dunn
Jenny is waiting at the airport. when a mother with a baby approaches her Jenny thinks she’s hit the jackpot. Her ‘friend’ will pay a lot of money for healthy babies. Too bad that’s not what Jenny gets.
If the stories weren’t planned together, which I don’t think they were, it’s an ironic follow up to the last story.
Favourite of the Week:
For creepiness factor it would definitely be Patient Fate by Tom Piccirilli. Like I said, I’m a sucker for an awesome vanishing hitch-hiker story. For emotional depths that I’d rather not stir up? Penance by Barry Hoffman without a doubt.
Thanks for joining us this week for a somewhat depressing story selection. Hopefully next week will be a little cheerier and creepier.