ON SAFARI IN R'LEYH AND CARCOSA WITH GUN AND CAMERA by Elizabeth Bear is a fascinating short story, written in a mixed style of Lovecraft and Bradbury. I love the hook at the beginning, and the delivery of the timeline. The author doesn't bog down readers with too many details, and yet manages to create more than one unique creature within a captivating setting.
I recommend this one to all readers, regardless of genre preference.
DANCE WITH ME by Rocky Alexander centers on a young woman preparing to leave for college, while dealing with an obsessed ex-boyfriend. Luckily for her, she has an uncle in the police department. Unfortunately, he makes everything much worse.
The suspense is great...plays out kind of like a Tales From the Crypt episode.
BURIED ALIVE by Ben Stevens is one of the most fantastic short stories I've ever read. The description had me thinking this would be some kind of escape suspense-thriller, instead, the author has created a powerful horror tale of self-discovery, redemption, rage and revenge.
There is not one dull moment in this story. From the first moment the narrator discovers he is trapped to the moment his story ends, every page had me on edge. I think this one could even be made into a movie.
Highly recommend to all readers, even if you're not normally horror fans.
Driving down a quiet, pitch black road in the middle of the national park, Emily concentrated as much as she could. Lost in her thoughts she had to frequently remind herself that she needed to concentrate. Clasping the steering wheel and fighting back emotions she breathed deeply to stay focused. It was the dead of night and the cars headlights illuminated nothing but tarmac and the foot of trees lining both sides of the road. She glances over at the passenger seat and looks at the supermarket shopping bag sitting there. Rapidly blinking and wrestling with her thoughts she puts her hand on the bag. Her hand shaking as she starts to rummage through the bag, then suddenly there was a dull thud underneath the car.
LYING IN WAIT by A.M. Dawkins is a flash fiction story filled with a rather disjointed storyline. Emily is distracted by her need for whiskey. Something has happened to her husband, but readers never find out why he's missing, which is a huge distraction. The description of her attackers is somewhat vague. The ending seems unfinished.
I think the author should have chosen a different format for this story idea. Fifty pages or more would have worked better than ten pages.
Tom Fellman doesn’t ask questions, he just buries the bodies. But this night he is sidetracked by his bumbling crew, and it can cost him his own life.
BURY IT DEEP by D.E. Michelle is a strange story, which begs to ask: how many thugs does it take to bury one body? Four is not enough in this case, especially when they have to deal with everything from crazies to the supernatural.
I wouldn't call this humorous...more bizarre than anything. The suspense is pretty good, especially in the end.
Mrs. Tessie Buchanon was a woman of meager means. She lived alone on her inherited family farm but never had a regret right up until her untimely death at the age of 71. When two despicable thieves hatch a plan to rob the kind old woman, the powers of nature are the last thing they considered.
THE ORCHARD by Richard Allen Moore is just a few pages about two POS grandsons lacking respect for their grandmother and her orchard. Somewhat predictable, but still entertaining.
VENTURING OUT: DARK DIMENSIONS by Randy Norton is apparently the second story in a sci-fi mini-series. I'm not bothering to read the first or third installments because the editing was so damn horrible in this one.
Considering this is only a few pages, I have no idea why the three stories weren't simply released as one short story. Do yourselves a favor, and skip this one.
Instead, I recommend THE SHIMMER EFFECT by Randy Norton, which is the only story of his I've truly enjoyed.
ICE CREAM MAN by J.D. Krueger reminds me of another flash fiction story I read, almost exactly a year ago, with the same title, but different author name (Ben Larracey). I don't know if the author switched pen names and changed up the cover, or if this person plagiarized the other author.
Much like the first version I read, there is a lot of emphasis on how fat the kid is. If I didn't know any better, I'd think this IS the same story, re-released. Once again, I will say, more could have been done with the characters, and the ending is abrupt.