Turn Down the Lights

Edited by Richard Chizmar. Cemetery Dance (www.cemeterydance.com), $35 (176p) ISBN 978-1-58767-437-2
Chizmar celebrates the 25th anniversary of his Cemetery Dance magazine with new stories by the small group of writers whom he considers an integral part of the magazine's history. New stories by Stephen King, Peter Straub, and Clive Barker would be enough to make this one of the notable horror collections of the year, and all of those are indeed solid (particularly King's "Summer Thunder," a heartbreaking tale of two men and a dog awaiting certain death after nuclear war). Pieces by less mainstream, more cultish writers also hold their own. Ed Gorman's "Flying Solo," a tale of two widowed cancer patients who decide to become vigilantes, is typically clever, while Norman Partridge's "Incarnadine" is a tight, brutal take on supernatural revenge movies. Bentley Little's "In the Room" is a chilling and disturbing story of people mysteriously disappearing from a man's life. Even the few weak tales—like Ronald Kelly's "The Outhouse," a straightforward boys-unleash-monsters story—are entertaining enough, if nothing new. Chizmar has essentially produced an all-star, book-length issue of his magazine, and horror fans should be sure to pick it up. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/23/2013
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 202 pages - 978-1-909640-47-4
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