The Dark Screams book series is more like a mini-magazine than a book, but it capitalizes on the ebook buyer looking for something quick and inexpensive. This fifth volume in the series does a nice job of pumping up the horror and keeping the reader entertained.
This volume contains the following five stories:
“Everything You’ve Always Wanted” by Mick Garris. This has a sense of the classic horror story – lots of anticipation and cringing.
“The Land of Sunshine” by Patrick Burke. This is precisely what I look for in a good horror story. Beautiful language that sucks you in, with plenty of symbolism, and a horror that you can’t tear away from because you recognize the longing.
“Mechanical Gratitude” by Del James. This was my least favorite of the group. While it, too, had a sense of classic horror (fear and terror rather than violence and splatter), the draw of a hot car just has never worked for me and I feel I’ve read enough horror and sci-fi car stories that I just don’t need any more.
“The One and Only” by J. Kenner. College boys looking to get laid at the end of summer. Need I say more?
“The Playhouse” by Bentley Little. This one made me pause and actually really think about what I was reading … not something I typically expect with a short horror story. But the intricacies here really made it worth the read. I liked this one a lot.
I really like this series because it offers just enough to make you feel as though you got your money’s worth, but even if you don’t like two of the stories, it doesn’t feel like a waste. The series also ends to put a classic, better-known author in each volume along with some relative new-comers, and I like the opportunity to discover a ‘new’ writer. In this particular volume, while I recognize the name of Bentley Little, I can’t say that I’ve ever read anything by him or any of the other authors here, so this was a complete surprise for me, and one which I enjoyed.
Looking for a good book? Dark Screams Volume 5 is a terrific, thin volume of five horror stories that should appeal to fans of the genre.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
* * * * * *
Dark Screams, Volume 5
editors: Brian James Freeman and Richard Chizmar
Kindle Edition, 160 pages