Natasha McNeely's Author Blog

Never stop dreaming, 'cause the day you stop dreaming, is the day you stop living.

Book Review – “Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous”

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Things go bump in the night. That’s something we’re all told when we’re young and something we’re afraid of then, but eventually grow out of. But what happens if it’s actually true? What happens if, due to horrific events, you can no longer tell the difference between night and day?

That’s what this anthology of thirty short stories is about. First, enjoy the cover and the back cover synopsis, and then my review. It’s a doozy, I swear it.

The light has failed: the era of man is at its end.

Born of darkness, the creatures of myth, legend, and nightmare have long called the shadows home. Now, with the cruel touch of the sun fading into memory, they’ve returned to claim their rightful place amidst humanity; as its masters.

Fading Light collects 30 monstrous stories by authors new and experienced, in the genres of horror, science fiction, and fantasy, each bringing their own interpretation of what lurks in the dark.

Contributors: Mark Lawrence, Gene O’Neill, William Meikle, David Dalglish, Gord Rollo, Nick Cato, Adam Millard, Stephen McQuiggan, Gary W Olson, Tom Olbert, Mark Pantoja, Malon Edwards, Carl Barker, Jake Elliot, Lee Mather, Georgina Kamsika, Dorian Dawes, Timothy Baker, DL Seymour, Wayne Ligon, TSP Sweeney, Stacey Turner, Gef Fox, Edward M Erdelac, Henry P Gravelle, & Ryan Lawler, with bonus stories from CM Saunders, Regan Campbell, Jonathan Pine, Peter Welmerink, & Alex Marshall.

Phew! What a list. So many names, so many stories, and so much awesome. Without further ado, enjoy my review and if you’re intrigued, pick up the book!

Star Rating: 5/5

I received an Advance Reading Copy of this from one of the contributors, Mark Lawrence, in exchange for an unbiased and honest review. I intend to give just that.

First I’ll give an overview of my general thoughts concerning this anthology and then I’ll delve a bit deeper into a small handful of my favorite stories. Here goes!

General Thoughts
Horror isn’t a genre I’ve read much of; I’ll be the first to admit that. However, I’ve been reading more and more of it lately and this is an anthology I’d recommend to anyone intending to broaden their reading horizons.
It consists of a multitude of stories, each focusing on different topics, though each with that same dark touch that makes them so interesting to read. Be prepared to read about the sun dying, darkness creeping over the lands, and even some unconventional topics that I never saw coming.
Not all stories had a chilling effect on me or kept my interest as much, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t all good. There’s bound to be at least one story for every reading in here, so pick it up and give it a try!

Favorites
“Wrath” by Lee Mather.
A man fighting his alcoholism decides it’s time to fight to regain custody of his son. What he doesn’t count on is the wrath of God coming to force people to believe.
A powerful and emotional story, this tale chilled me to the bones and inspired me all at the same time. One thing’s for sure: After reading this, I’d think twice about letting my potential-children out of my sight in the future.

“Born of Darkness” by Stacey Turner.
This story may be my favorite of them all. It goes from hopelessness as darkness ravages the land, to a spark of hope, a spark of light, illuminating the path that could lead to what everyone is hoping for; the light returning.
This short story has the makings of a brilliant novel, if not a series. My imagination went wild focusing on what things would happen to the characters in the months and years to come.

“Where Coyotes Fear to Tread” by Gef Fox.
This was a bit of a toss-up for me. It’s a brilliant story and like the previous one, I could see it as a full-length novel. It felt more like an epic fantasy with a touch of darkness to me. Because of that, it felt a bit out of place compared to the other stories, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t less good.
Personally, I would prefer it as a novel. It feels too short. The world and idea is too broad to be confined in a short story. All that aside, it has amazing potential and the characters are interesting, which is why it’s one of my favorites.

“Dark Tide” by Mark Lawrence.
The reason this made it into my list of favorites is quite simple. It focuses on hope – and self-sacrifice. It shows a man not willing to give up, even as darkness threatens to swallow him and his family.
The concept in this story in interesting and unique, which drew me into it immediately (and made me afraid of cellars, admittedly) and kept my focus until the very end. Speaking of the end: The ending is open and gives readers the chance to imagine for themselves where things will go from there.

Like I said before, all the stories were good in their own way; the four mentioned above were simply my personal favorites. Again, I highly recommend this anthology to anyone who enjoys reading about the darkness, and anyone looking to try something new.

If you’re interested, Fading Light is available at the following places:

Amazon (Kindle & Paperback) | Smashwords (eBook) | CreateSpace (Paperback)

Last but not least, add it on Goodreads!

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Author: Natasha McNeely

I'm a writer, a reader, a gamer and a dreamer. I love losing myself to thought and considering possibilities. That is how I create my stories and weave the erratic tales into readable ones.

One thought on “Book Review – “Fading Light: An Anthology of the Monstrous”

  1. Pingback: Fading Light going strong! « T.S.P. Sweeney

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