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Ratings and Reviews (4 18 star ratings
4 reviews
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4.2 out of 5
18
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  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    The Screams echo on and on...

    Dark Screams keeps the dark pace going with this new volume. The stories in this volume are not for the faint of heart. One of the real stand outs of this volume is The Corpse King by Tim Curran. The story is longer than all the others combined and has a dark quality that is to be enjoyed to the very end. Dark Screams continues to delivery stories that make you shiver and want to sleep with the lights on.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Another in the spine tingling Dark Screams series!

    I received an advance reader copy (arc) of this book for the purpose of providing an honest review. I continue to enjoy this anthology series and this installment again allows readers an introduction to a wide and varied group of authors … some great, some good and some deftly in the category of “other.” This is the largest of the anthologies yet … in terms of page count and the range from great to really bad in stories. I enjoyed King and Prentiss as always. Morton and Oates also livened up the party. I wasn’t thrilled (but not overly disappointed) with Quinn-Gibney and would have rather been in Quinn-Gibney’s story than had to read Curran’s missive. This anthology includes these stories: —The Old Dude’s Ticker, by Stephen King. Would anyone like some re-heated Poe? But, in a good way. Any fan of Poe’s will find this updated a frenetic take on The Tell-Tale Heart entertaining and suspenseful. 4.5 stars —The Rich Are Different, by Lisa Morton, And how truly different are they? Especially with our current political climate, we see what some are willing to exchange or comfort and prosperity. Humanity for sale? 3.5 stars —The Manicure, by Nell Quinn-Gibney, An ordinary mani-pedi day dredges up a memory per digit with sinister results. 3.0 stars —The Comforting Voice, by Norman Prentiss, As is Norman’s gift, he deftly brings this family of characters to life, breathing separate and distinct personalities into each. Does the end justify the means? You will have to decide. 4.5 stars —The Situations, by Joyce Carol Oates, Sometimes the kitty wins and sometimes Daddy wins. I guess it depends on the situation. 4.0 stars —The Corpse King, by Tim Curran, I have never been more disappointed in a story. Tortuous, arduous, rambling … I only finished reading the story as an object lesson in not giving up, painful though it was. 1.0 star
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    A new volume in an outrageous series

    Brian James Freeman allowed me the opportunity to receive an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of Dark Screams: Volume One back in 2014 in exchange for an unbiased review. Thankfully, he didn’t hate it and continued to allow me the amazing opportunity to receive and review the four volumes that followed – and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. Recently, Brian and Richard decided to continue the series – and again, I was lucky enough to be chosen to review ARCs. Let me start by saying this: The Dark Screams series of books is a superb collection for those wanting to get their pallet wet in the horror genre. Brian and Richard choose a wide array of authors, some well-known, others, not so much. The stories are just as diverse; providing something for everyone. Dark Screams: Volume Six doesn’t disappoint. As usual with short stories, writing a review of each can be tricky in order to not give away too much, but I’ll try: 1) THE OLD DUDE’S TICKER by Stephen King – this is the only story in the book that has a forward by the author. Not only that, but King goes on to apologize for the story to both the reader and to Poe – from whom the story idea originated. This is Mr. King’s revised version of Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart. I enjoyed it, so no apology necessary. 2) THE RICH ARE DIFFERENT by Lisa Morton – If you’ve followed my reviews, you have heard the name Lisa Morton on more than one occasion. I enjoy her style and technique, and her stories are top notch in the genre. I read this story in Cemetery Dance magazine (Issue 74/75) in December and didn’t hesitate to reread it now. My reading time is very sparse, so I usually don’t reread things – especially not in such a short time span – but I enjoyed this one so much the first time, that I relished the opportunity to read it again. It really points out just what the obscenely rich are willing to pay to get what they want. 3) THE MANICURE by Nell Quinn-Gibney – This story is one of those psychological ones that on the surface doesn’t make sense, until you think about it. I can honestly say I’ve never had a manicure, and don’t think I’ll ever get one after reading this story. 4) THE COMFORTING VOICE by Norman Prentiss – Sorry, Lisa, but Norman’s story wins for being my favorite in this group. I enjoyed this story so much, that I actually found Mr. Prentiss on Facebook and wrote him a message telling him such. Baby Lydia screams, all the time at the top of her lungs, and there is nothing her parents can do to calm her. That is, until her grandfather talks to her using his electronic voice box (due to throat cancer). This hit home as my own daughter, due to colic, would do the same – and the only thing that soothed her was the sound of the vacuum cleaner. Because of that, this story was very relatable. 5) THE SITUATIONS by Joyce Carol Oates – OK, like I’ve said before, in every anthology there is bound to be one story that doesn’t resonate with you. This is the one for me in this collection. I found it to be confusing, disjointed, and just plain weird. 6) THE CORPSE KING by Tim Curran – and taking up more than half the book is this novella. I’ve never heard of this author, but I liked his style. This tells the tale of two grave robbers in Edinburgh, trying to stay one step ahead of the noose, but unable to outrun something more terrifying. This one was unbelievably creepy. Thanks to Mr. Curran’s talent for setting a scene, I had to take a long, hot shower after reading it, and then another just to make sure I was clean. There you have it – another outstanding collection of stories from some very talented individuals. Don’t pass this one up.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Great addition to the series.

    The Old Dude’s Ticker by Stephen King This is one groovy short story. Can you dig it? It gets into your brain like the slapping of nightsticks hitting your palm. It is dated, but I liked the Vietnam era slang. This is a good retelling of Poe’s Tell-tale Heart. The Rich are Different by Lisa Morton This is an interesting tale of star-crossed lovers involving a reporter and the son of a cursed wealthy family. It’s a different take that I haven’t read before. I liked it a lot The Manicure by Nell Quinn-Gibney This is a weird story I think is the weakest of the bunch. For me, it is to disjointed and hard to understand. The Comforting Voice by Norman Prentiss I liked this story of how to soothe a baby and the dark twisted ending it has. The Situations by Joyce Carol Oates I think this is the shortest of the stories. I didn’t understand the ending so didn’t quite do it for me. The Corpse King by Tim Curran This is a novella that is half of the book. It is about the adventures of two gravediggers in 19th century Scotland and I believe is based on a child’s rhyme mentioned at the end. Aye, it is a great piece of work me thinks. This story will make you appreciate my modern plumbing conveniences. I have always liked Curran’s stories, and this is a nasty little slice.
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