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Short Take: “I Am Drusilla,” Lucille Moncrief

Pros: Interesting mythology Cons: Confusing in places Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Lucille Moncrief’s I am Drusilla, An Original Short Story explores an interesting bit of mythology within the author’s world. It deals with the children of a mother goddess,

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Review: “Darker Things,” Rob Cornell

Pros: Fabulous world-building; intriguing storyline Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Rob Cornell’s Darker Things: An Urban Fantasy Thriller (The Lockman Chronicles Book 1) starts off with a bang. Thirteen-year-old girl Jessie shows up on Craig Lockman’s doorstep. In

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Review: “Six Scary Stories,” ed. Stephen King

Pros: Enjoyable little horror tales Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Stephen King agreed to manage a short story contest, and he liked the best six entries so much that he suggested they be turned into an anthology. Hence

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Review: “Posing for Picasso,” Sam Stone

Pros: Keeps the reader guessing! Cons: Slow start Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Sam Stone’s Posing for Picasso is a thriller/horror novel that absolutely delighted me. Painter Avgustin Juniper is accused of killing and mutilating his girlfriend and model, Annabel.

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Review: “Bird Box,” Josh Malerman

Pros: Amazing tension! Cons: Highly internal (won’t work for some) Rating: 5 out of 5 I recently saw some ads for the movie version of Josh Malerman’s Bird Box: A Novel, and they didn’t convince me. But then a friend

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Review: “Knock Knock,” S.P. Miskowski

Pros: Definitely creepy Cons: The first half or so is drawn out Rating: 4 out of 5 Knock Knock is a horror tale told by S.P. Miskowski. Ethel, Beverly, and Marietta are school friends in Skillute, Washington, even though they’re

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Review: “Of Blood and Bone,” Nora Roberts

Pros: Fascinating world-building; excellent characters Cons: Part of the ending comes out of nowhere Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Nora Roberts’s Of Blood and Bone: Chronicles of The One, Book 2 picks up a handful of years after Year One

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Review: “O Little Town of Deathlehem,” ed. Michael J. Evans, Harrison Graves

Pros: Some original, spooky Christmas stories Cons: Like most anthologies, the quality is variable Rating: 4 out of 5 O Little Town of Deathlehem: An Anthology of Holiday Horrors for Charity, edited by Michael J. Evans and Harrison Graves, is

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Review: “Cocktails at Seven, Apocalypse at Eight,” Don Bassingthwaite

Pros: Original, vivid, inspiring, and bawdy! Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Now I’m even more addicted to storybundles, since one of them introduced me to Don Bassingthwaite’s marvelous Cocktails at Seven, Apocalypse at Eight: The Derby Cavendish Stories.

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Review: “The Claus Effect,” David Nickle and Karl Schroeder

Pros: So much fun; so creative! Cons: Starts out a little rough Rating: 4.5 out of 5 David Nickle and Karl Schroeder’s The Claus Effect combines a short story called “The Toy Mill” set in 1983, and a book called

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