Dark Screams: Volume Four

Dark Screams: Volume Four - Clive Barker, Richard Chizmar, Heather Graham, Brian James Freeman, Ed Gorman Dark Screams 4

I received and ARC copy from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I have read each of these story collection as they came out and have enjoyed most of them. The fourth installment is very strong and makes me look forward to new volumes.

The Departed by Clive Barker
A story from the more tender side of Clive Barker. A supernatural love story about motherly love in which a mother (the departed) seeks to reunite, in whatever way that she can, with her children, and learns some hard lessons. Bittersweet and masterful. 5 stars.

The New War by Lisa Morton
A tense story of a terrified man in a nursing home stalked by the black and shadowy figure of death. Similar to the Barker story in that I felt that it was quite literary in treatment and subtle. Similar also in that Morton masterfully drafts her protagonist to generate sympathy even as the tension rises. I felt very deeply concerned for this man, a brave veteran WWII veteran struggling for his life and his sanity. This story was my favorite in the bunch. Lisa Morton is a very talented writer. 5 stars.

Sammy Comes Home by Ray Garton
Classic monster romp involving absolutely disgusting parasitic monsters. You know that this is just the beginning of the story and that it is all going to go downhill fast for humanity. I think it might be continued in or a spinoff of his novel ‘Nids, which I also recommend if you like this type of classic horror story. Garton knows how to write campy monster stories that are fun yet still make them scary. 4 stars.

The Brasher Girl by Ed Gorman
I don’t want to give too much away but I found this long story to be an interesting take on the possession concept. I was enjoying it in a “3 to 3 ½” sort of way until the ending, which I thought was very well done and chilling. 4 stars.

Creature Feature by Heather Graham
As the name suggests, this is pure Saturday morning horror movie fare and a bit too Scooby-Doo for me. Tastes may differ, though. 3 stars.