cover image Strange Is the Night

Strange Is the Night

S.P. Miskowski. JournalStone, $16.95 trade paper (252p) ISBN 978-1-945373-74-9

These 13 eerie stories (of which 10 are reprints) by rising star Miskowski (I Wish I Was like You) will thrill fans of clever horror. In “Ms. X Regrets Everything,” a middle-aged woman at her parole hearing remembers a life wasted, drowned in blood, despair, and depravity. “Strange Is the Night” imagines the well-deserved fate of a cynical, caddish theater critic who attends a very strange stage production. The melancholy “The Second Floor” is about a successful playwright who revisits the Seattle home she shared with three others 18 years before, recalling the heartbreak and hope that resided there. “Animal House” and “Fur” explore animalistic tendencies. The heartrending, Kafkaesque “Stag in Flight” mines the unhappy, insular world of a mentally ill man and his ultimate release from it. Every story showcases Miskowski’s versatility and gift with prose and taps into a dark, writhing undercurrent of palpable unease beneath the mundanity of everyday life. Uncanny and quietly menacing, these stories will transport readers, inviting them with crooked finger to confront, and even embrace, the shadowed corners of their own psyches. (Oct.)