Tuesday, November 11, 2014

ebook review: Scared: Ten Tales of Horror edited by Rayne Hall

I received this product in exchange for an honest review.

 As promised, I have another horror themed review for you today. Today's review is another collection of stories edited by Rayne Hall. I actually have 2 more of Hall's collections to read & review after this one. If you couldn't tell, I'm a fan of these works so far.

(image source: Google search)

 Blurb: (taken from Amazon.com)
Ten stories of spine-tingling suspense, edited by Rayne Hall.

In this collection, you'll find scary stories for almost every taste, each penned by a different author with a different writing style and a different taste in horror. This allows you to explore your own preferences. Which story gives you the most delicious frights?

The authors have played with “What if” scenarios: What if the safe world we take for granted is changing and we don't know? What if a seemingly harmless object grows into a menace? What if an everyday occurrence turns into something nasty? What if a minor irritation is actually a sign that something big is underfoot? What if threats are outside our control? Picking up the phone, going to the toilet on the train or buying a birthday gift may be the start of a nightmare.

These stories don't seek to shock you with chainsaw massacres or to gross you out with mounds of gore. Rather, the authors aim to scare you in subtle ways, creating the kind of fear which creeps up on you, grabs you by the throat, and sometimes lingers long after you've finished reading.

To preserve the authors' individual voices, some of the stories are in American English, others in British.

Enjoy the goose-pimples, the clammy hands, the creeping chills, and the pounding heart. When you've finished reading, you can return to the real world and know you'll be safe. Or will you?

1.OUT OF ORDER by Karen Heard
What do you do when the lights go out and the screaming starts?

2. OUR LADY OF THE TOADS by Deborah J. Ross writing as Deborah Wheeler
The large, ugly toad perched in front of the gate was truly worthy of being a witch's familiar.

3. FAMILY HEIRLOOM by Pamela Turner
This weapon has a mind of its own.

4. RING OF STONES by Donna Johnson
Jake Barnes seeks revenge on the cursed creature living in the abandoned well.

A bully's cruel hand grants Maggie's dearest wish.

6. CREATURES OF THE NIGHT by William Meikle
What if intense fantasies create a different reality?

7. DRUID STONES by Rayne Hall
Modern druids enact an ancient ritual, and a woman watches in secret.

8. THE LOFT by Liv Rancourt
Three women from the church choir learn that evil is everywhere.

9. LIFE IN MINIATURE by Tracie McBride
Street kid Michael thinks it's his lucky day when a do-gooder picks him up off the street.

10. YOU HAVE ONE MESSAGE by Jonathan Broughton
Press * for connection.

Some of these stories have been previously published in magazines, ezines, story collections and anthologies.
They may not be suitable for young readers.

Review: I didn't like this collection quite as much as some of the others. I did enjoy it, so don't get me wrong. I just feel some of the other collections contain better stories. Once again, about a quarter of the book was promotion material which I just skimmed.

Ring of Stones and Our Lady of the Toads were my two favorites. Our Lady of the Toads I found bizarre but interesting. Ring of Stones was my favorite, and I quite enjoyed it. I'm not quite sure how this was a horror story, but I may have a skewed perception. The imagery was excellent, with good detail and overall good story telling.

I also enjoyed Druid Stones, although I found the ending predictable. The last two stories I actually found amusing. Life in Miniature wasn't a new idea in the least, and therefore predictable yet I enjoyed it anyway and I suppose it was among my favorites. You Have One Message reminded me of Stephen King's Cell and I only found this story highly amusing because it so much resembled my real life every day battle with technology (ironically, after reading this I spent the better part of the evening trying to get my phone to open Kindle. Yes - technology hates me.)

Upon reflection, I think the reason I didn't enjoy this book as much as some of the others is that so many of the stories I found predictable or unoriginal - or worse, both. There were even a couple which I had to read a few times to make sense out of, and one more which I can't remember at all it was so forgettable. Quite frankly, I found several of the stories quite dumb.

I definitely didn't love this book, but I didn't hate it, either. Was I scared reading these? No, definitely not. Entertained? Yes. This e-book is only 99 cents on Amazon so it's still a great buy for that price.

 I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

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