Edition: ebook, 160 Pages
Genre: Horror anthology
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From the depths of the darkest waters of the ocean to the eternal darkness of space, Rhiannon Frater crafts taunt tales of terror to enthrall avid readers of the genre. Each short story explores a different type of monster from the shambling undead to devourers of worlds.
In Cthulhu’s Daughter explore madness and terror as a young woman’s mind slowly unravels as a hurricane bears down on her hometown. Step back in time to witness one man’s flight from the ravages of war only to encounter a pack of werewolves in Fleeing and slink through the shadows of a mansion where an archaeologist obsesses over the mummy queen residing in her sarcophagus in Amunet. Encounter a sentient nanny robot hoping to escape deletion while struggling to keep her ward safe from her abusive employer in Flesh and Circuits, or rush along city streets as a seeing-eye dog tries to save her blind master in Stop Requested. Witness the struggle between a mortal mother and the vampire who wants to take away her ailing child and turn him into a creature of the night in The Two Mothers. And, finally, discover what terrors lurk beyond the reflective surface of a mirror in The Key.
Each tale carries Rhiannon Frater’s distinctive stamp of stunning action coupled with realistic characters that the reader either cheers for or fears.
Rhiannon does it again! This is a really amazing collection of horror stories told in a way that only Rhiannon can acomplish. I’ll go over each story in this review.
Cthulhu’s Daughter was absolutely amazing and definitely a fantastic opening story. Lulu is a young woman who has been diagnosed as schizophrenic but believes she is the daughter of the Old God, Cthulhu. This one is a fantastic spiral of madness and darkness, and I love that it never gives you a defined “yes” or “no” when it comes to Lulu. I loved the imagery and the descriptions that gives this one a true gothic horror feel. If you are a fan of Lovecraft then definitely check this out.
Flesh and Circuits is a horror story of a different nature. It focuses on a nanny android that is woefully out of date and risks deletion, and is charged with taking care of a little boy while his alcoholic and abusive mother works. This is not a tradition horror story, but is chilling nonetheless.
The Two Mothers does have horror elements but I found it to be the most heartwarming of the stories included in this anthology. Elise is a vampire who has grown bored with her long life and longs to have a child of her own, but faced with her own sterility she decides to seek out someone else’s child to fill this void.
Fleeing, is a werewolf short story and one of the shortest in the collection. I love the amount of emotion that Rhiannon packs into this one.
Amunet, is a story that focuses on a mummy in the possession of an Egyptologist and affect it has on his family. This has a very Twilight Zone feel to it and the ending is definitely creepy.
Stop Requested is a zombie novella that matches up with the story in The Living Dead Boy anthology and is told from the point of view of a guide dog who is desperate to lead her owner away from harm. Loved this.
The Key is a delightfully twisted story about a woman terrified of the things living inside of the mirrors of the world. Definitely a great way to end the collection.
Overall this is a great anthology of horror stories that have a variety of feels to them. The horror of each story is different and does not always manifest in the obvious ways.