Monday, July 18, 2011

Book Review: Tattered Souls 2 (due out Aug. 2011)

Tattered Souls 2 Edited by Frank Hutton
Chopping Block press
218 pages

I reviewed the first book in this series and based on the strength of the first book choose to read this one. While the first book was not a perfect collection it was a great introduction to several authors I had never heard of before. I was very excited by a novella in the first book that I thought should have been a stand alone novel, and have followed and looked for the work of it's author Matt Wallace ever since reading Tattered Souls 1. That is the greatest function of an anthology, introducing us to authors we have not already found. This is usually done by splitting books between well known authors and new authors.

TS seems to be focused on newer authors as I had only heard of Forrest Aguirre before reading this book. That being said I found Aguirre's story to be the strongest of the collection. His story called The Arch:Conjecture of cities was somewhat Lovecraftian, not in the tired mythos tropes style but in the way the story unfolded.

The book opens with a very Phillip K. Dick inspired dark Sci-fi tale called “Yellow called and Mom was there.” by Tim Burke. Most of the stories are on the longer scale coming close to the line where short stories become novella. This worked in Aguirre's story but made a few of the stories such as Stephanie Shaw's Mademoiselle Guignol drag. A few of the stories could have benefited from being shorter.

TS is a great concept, and should be supported for bringing new authors to the table. I think the first book did a better job, but I can tell you I will read the third when it comes around. Libraries with a focus on horror in their collection should have this for sure.

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