After Nightfall & Other Weird Tales
David A Riley (illustrated by Jim Pitts)
Parallel Universe Publications, 2021
Reviewed by Mario Guslandi
A prolific and well respected British horror writer, David A Riley repurposes a bunch of his short stories in a new collection where each tale is graced by dark (and sometimes outright disquieting) illustrations by artist Jim Pitts, which produce further shivers along the reader’s spine.
Among the included illustrated tales, I will mention my own favorite.
In the offbeat “Three Eyed Jack,” a young freak born with a third eye, making a living with fake séances, discovers that there are things that normal eyes cannot detect, while in “The Fragile Mask on his Face,” a strong tale of graphic horror, things are getting increasingly frightening as the final denouement approaches.
“Terror on the Moors” is yet another terrifying piece portraying a man trapped inside an abandoned house in the middle of nowhere, and “The Shade of Apollion” depicts the terrible vengeance a man takes on an enemy of his, skeptical about the existence of monsters.
In the vivid “Fish Eye,” the life of a quiet village is disrupted by the retrieval from the sea bottom of the statue of an ancient idol, which brings about folly and carnage. “Prickly” is a sinister tale of urban horror where evil from the past keeps haunting the present.
Pitts’ disturbing artwork enhances the unsettling feeling created by those powerful tales.