From the Borderlands
ed. Thomas F. & Elizabeth E. Monteleone
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From the Borderlands
edited by Thomas F. & Elizabeth E. Monteleone
448 pages
September 2004
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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Fans of dark, disturbing horror stories will love From the Borderlands, a collection of short stories of terror and madness compiled as part of the ongoing "Borderlands" series. Edited by veteran horror anthologists Elizabeth E. and Thomas F. Monteleone, this newest installment features some of the best horror fiction out their, including new authors, total unknowns and some names everyone will recognize, such as Whitley Strieber, Stephen King and Bentley Little.

The short stories were selected by the editors on the basis of not only great writing but chill factor as well. Included are twenty-five tales of the strange, taking the reader beyond the borderlands of sanity and into the nether regions where things not only go bump in the night, they devour the night and anyone crazy enough to be out in it.

From the creepy first story, “Rami Temporalis” by Gary A. Braunbeck, about a man with one of those kind faces that just attracts people to it like moths to a flame, to the novella by Stephen King about a man obsessed with a stationary bike, these tales tease and taunt and move in for the thrill kill, with plots that get ever more disturbing with each passing page.

I thoroughly enjoyed the disturbing “Food Processor” by Michael Canfield, although I am still not sure I understand it, and the blood-chilling “Answering the Call” by Brian Freeman made me grateful for my career choice. “The Growth of Alan Ashley” by Bill Gauthier had me checking myself in the mirror every time I passed, and the distressing “Father Bob and Bobby” ensured that I will get the creeps every time I pass a Catholic Church. Then there are the unusually disturbing and downright spooky stories of human behavior gone seriously wrong, in “Dysfunction” by Darren O. Godfrey and “Infliction” by John McIlveen. I could go on…

From the Borderlands is filled to the brim with horror tales of every ilk and will satisfy even the most discerning fan of the genre. These brilliant new, unknown and famous authors know how to dish out the stuff of nightmares with short stories that are long on terror and will haunt you long after you have set down this book.

Anything and everything goes in the Borderlands, so be forewarned. Some of it isn’t pretty, some of it is perverse, some of it is downright shocking, but all of it is frightfully good reading for anyone brave enough to allow the mind, and the imagination, to venture into the darkness of the unknown.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Marie D. Jones, 2004

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