Halloween: Magic, Mystery, and the Macabre
edited by Paula Guran
What is it about:
The farther we've gotten from the magic and mystery of the past, the more we've come to love Halloween - the one time each year when the mundane is overturned in favor of the bizarre, the "other side" is closest, and everyone can become anyone (or anything) they wish... and sometimes what they don't. Introducing eighteen original stories from mistresses and masters of the dark celebrate the most fantastic, enchanting, spooky, and supernatural of holidays.
“Black Dog” by Laird Barron
“From Dust” by Laura Bickle
“Angelic” by Jay Caselberg
“Pumpkin Head Escapes” by Lawrence Connolly
“All Hallows in the High Hills” by Brenda Cooper
“We, the Fortunate Bereaved” by Brian Hodge
“Thirteen” by Stephen Graham Jones
“Whilst the Night Rejoices Profound and Still” by Caitlín R. Kiernan
“Trick or Treat” by Nancy Kilpatrick
“Long Way Home: A Pine Deep Story” by Jonathan Maberry
“The Mummy’s Kiss” by Norman Partridge
“All Souls Day” by Barbara Roden
“And When You Called Us We Came To You” by John Shirley
“The Halloween Men” by Maria V. Snyder
“Lesser Fires” by Steve Rasnic Tem & Melanie Tem
“Unternehmen Werwolf” by Carrie Vaughn
“For the Removal of Unwanted Guests” by A.C. Wise
“Quadruple Whammy” by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
What did I think of it:
I totally bought this anthology for the story by Laura Bickle in case you hadn't guessed yet. But I really like anthologies. They're a great way to discover new (to me) authors. This being an anthology with a Halloween theme was just the icing on the cake.
And this is a great anthology. Of the 18 stories in this anthology there were only 4 that didn't manage to click with me, the other 14 were all very intriguing and cool.
My favorite was 'From Dust' by Laura Bickle. Not just because I'm a total fanpiggy when it comes to Laura, but also because it's about one of my favorite kind of birds: crows. It's a story that breathes autumn and that's rich in atmosphere.
I also loved 'The Halloween Men' by Maria V. Snyder. Snyder creates a world where people wear masks every day, only to take them off at Halloween. This story is imaginative and disturbing in my opinion.
The other stories range from classic Halloween tales to futuristic Halloween myths. There are scary stories, disturbing stories, beautiful stories, and sad stories, but all of them are original and make you long to draw your curtains, light candles and roast chestnuts or make pumpkin pie. It's a great read for those cold, wet autumn evenings and I will be rereading this anthology for sure.
Why should you read it:
It's a really cool Halloween themed anthology.