Charles Stross, "Overtime"


Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Review: THE LADY'S MAID'S BELL by Edith Wharton 1903

<><>>> I read this first in February, and determined I need to read all of Edith Wharton's ghost tales. On first read, I was primarily struck by the fright (plenty), and the unpleasant character of the lady's husband. On second read, I gleaned more and differently: I noticed how the Narrator's physique and description, following her recovery from the dread Typhoid, make her appearance similar to that of her employer, who seems to fulfill the typical description of a Victorian "Fainting Lady." (The Narrator assumes Heart Failure, but I deduce Consumption. ) Nonetheless, the Narrator and the Lady both exude an ethereal appearance and, I think, are or were closer to Death and so are unintentionally open to seeing across the Veil separating Life from Death. Also on reread, I am more disgruntled at the lack of closure of the puzzle. Why had the Lady's Maid of twenty years' duration passed? What did she hold against the Lady's unpleasant alcoholic husband? Why wasn't he frightened to death? What secret did the ghost attempt to impart to the Narrator? All in all, a fine rendering in the classic 19th century Ghost Story tradition! >>

Monday, April 24, 2023

Review: HOLLY HORROR by Michelle Jabes Corpora

Whoa! This YA novel is distinctly SCARY!! [Yes, there was internal Screaming involved! More than once!!] I was totally engrossed by the author's treatment of divergence, that is, those who experience beyond the accepted five senses [Evie and Aunt Martha] as opposed by those who go 100% the rational route. Anyone who has ever experienced feeling "different" from the crowd [as we are all avid readers, we're already "set apart"] can riff on Evie's (and her Aunt's] feelings, experiences, and attempts to find her own path in a world that doesn't respect what it doesn't see.

There's a great side theme too that initially arises as backstory but later in the novel surfaces as highly significant and it's precious how author Michelle Jabes Corpora wove it in, so gently and subtly so that the significant consequences are gradually revealed, sneaking up on readers. There are indications this will be a Series; I definitely hope so! I'm really enthralled with these characters and hope to see much more of their "normal" and Paranormal adventures!

Monday, April 17, 2023

Review: HELL'S HIGHWAY by Ian Fortey and Ron Ripley

Release April 17 2023

Climb aboard this nonstop thrill ride from accomplished horrormeisters Ian Fortey and Shane Ryan. Former Marine, cynical "tough guy" Shane Ryan of New Hampshire is once again pulled in to a quest not his own, this one not even occurring in his native New England, but hundreds of miles across the Canadian border, along the notoriously infamous 401 Highway. Shane's close friend, Detroit Homicide Detective Jacinta Perez, summons Shane's input on a bizarre, escalating, series of murders of Michigan residents, all near 401. Worryingly, not all the killers are alive; and Shane's lifelong ability to see and interact with Ghosts is crucial to prevent further fatalities.

Violent, gory, breathlessly Suspenseful; I can't wait to read the next in this new Series!

Thursday, April 6, 2023

Review: IT FOUND US by Lindsey Currie

IT FOUND US is an engrossing, fast-paced, Paranormal Thriller with a very scary cover and spooky character. Aimed at middle graders, I found it very enjoyable [and scary], but also heartwarming as the twelve-year-old amateur sleuth works with her older brother and best friend to solve a multilayered mystery, including a vanishing. The author skillfully weaves in an actual early 20th-century tragedy as the basis for the contemporary events. Just as important are the characters' evolution, and the process by which families are solidified by recognizing the worth of each family member and of the family as a totality. Totally worth reading: give it a go!