Best New Werewolf Tales Volume 1
Edited By: Carolina Smart
Short Fiction By: Robert Elrod, Jonathan Maberry, James Roy Daley, John Everson, James Newman, David Bernstein, Simon McCaffery, John F.D. Taff, Rob Rosen, Michael Laimo, William Meikle, Douglas Smith, Rob E. Boley, T.J. May, David Niall Wilson, John Grover, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Randall Lahrman, Stephen M. Wilson, Anna Taborska, David Wesley Hill
Books of The Dead Press
Review By: Rick Amortis
An eerie, chilling, hair rising experience is this pack of original genre based tales from Books of the Dead Press. It seems everywhere we turn our heads today in contemporary horror based entertainment it’s always either zombies, vampires or werewolves. Leave it to a controversial, obscure market to bludgeon its audience to the point of submission, force feeding the public with one rendition after another of the same genre, different rendition. If it sells, why not beat the bloody hell out of it, seems to be the horror moniker.
Make no mistake about it Best New Werewolf Tales offers a howling metamorphosis of a good time. There are twists, turns, surprises and unexpected delights that will keep you fixated on your elongated nail biting marathons. The volume boasts an inhuman amount of most talented, innovative authors capable of altering mish-mash lychan tales to throw even the most cynical of avid readers into a frenzy.
Our volume commences with Maberry’s “Like Part Of The Family.” When Mrs. Skye commissions the services of private detective Mr. Hunter to investigate the motives of her stalking ex-husband, he quickly learns there is far more to Mr. Skye than what meets the eye.
Descriptive, imaginative and a true sense of steadily rising tension, Jonathan Maberry preys upon his reader’s collective subconscious and knows precisely when to hit all the right buttons. Just when we’re engaged unto the lead protagonist, feeling a certain sense of dread and pity for Mrs. Skye we learn of the true evil behind her marriage to David. A genuine eye opener, “Like Part Of The Family” will have you tearing through the pages in a ferocious, insatiable appetite for more.
“Anniversary” is dark, demented and taken from a unique perspective. Margaret demonstrates she’ll do whatever it takes to satisfy the beastly appetites of her mate Charles. Written by John Everson, a recipient of the Bram Stoker Award, this author has an undeniable gift for teasing the reader’s with what lurks in the shadows, beneath the surface and within the inner recesses of our darkest, most delirious thoughts. Chock full of innuendo’s, indiscretions and the idiosyncrasies that rule man kind’s hearts Anniversary will render you paralyzed with fear and restless with insomnia.
“The Trojan Plush” is a disturbing account of dog eat dog in a morally inept society. Brad Raling seeks the expertise of a clairvoyant medium or gypsy if you’d rather to settle the score of murderous Martin Bigg narrowly escaping the clutches of certain incarceration. Walking free on a technicality Mr. Bigg soon learns his freedom has come at an unholy cost.
Thought provoking, gripping and suspenseful, David Bernstein captures a sense of dread and doom with epic proportion. We instantly empathize with Brad and travel with him on his journey to right the moral wrongs of his slain loved ones. “The Trojan Plush” will inevitably make your skin crawl in the final act when we realize just what lengths Raling will go to for justice to prevail.
“Jesus When The Sun Goes Down” by Simon McCaffery is a bizarre religion based tale of childhood brothers Pete and Nate off to summer bible camp. Something is horribly amiss with camp Raven’s Den. One by one the brother’s of the church begin to disappear deep within the surrounding woods. Are they merely engaging in survivalist out trips or are their ventures more sinister and unholy to speak of?
McCaffery’s solid blend of humor, action and darkest of terror captivates the reader’s attention instantaneously and is relentless through and through. Its campfire, chiller theatre at it’s best. We cannot wait to learn the fate of one Nate and Pete while the tale persists at pulse hammering pace.
All in all Best New Werewolf Tales is a most fitting and appropriate title. Of course there are far too many stories to draft a synopsis and review of each, the above are merely a morsel of fresh meat available to whet your lychan pallet. Each author offers a unique flavor of terror that will surely appeal a broad demographic within fans of horror. It can often be a thankless task to breathe new life into a tired genre yet these authors seem to execute gritty, in your face, bark at the moon tales that will leave you breathless for more.