cover image Where Rivers Go to Die

Where Rivers Go to Die

Dilman Dila. Rosarium, $17.95 trade paper (204p) ISBN 978-0-578-36803-0

Dila (The Future God of Love) goes for the jugular in this collection of eight afrosurrealist horror stories. Whether dealing with a grief-burdened police officer haunted by a specter impersonating his dead wife (“Fragments of Canvas”) or the disembodied soul of the victim of an attempted murder pursuing his attacker (“Kifaro”), Dila delivers thought-provoking perspectives on human foibles and demonstrates his range by melding African lore with urban legend and detective fiction tropes. A police officer’s search for a serial killer evolves into a hunt for a mythical monstrosity in “Monwor,” while in “The Last Storyteller,” the boundaries between the real and virtual worlds blur for a woman equipped with an augmented reality device. Readers may balk at the fatphobic sentiment in “The Flying Man of Stone,” but this is a rare misstep in an otherwise meticulously concocted volume full of starkly vivid imagery and gripping prose. These tales are guaranteed both to tickle the imagination and give readers the heebie-jeebies. (June)