Published by Abaddon on 7.9.16
Genres: Creature Feature, Dark Fiction, Fiction, Horror, Mystery, Psychological Horror, Sci-Fi, Science Fiction
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Them Blighters are everywhere.
They fell out of the sky last year, great horrible armour-plated slugs with razor-sharp fangs. But ugly as they are, they give the ultimate high to anyone nearby: a blissful, gleeful contentment that people are willing to kill for.
Not Becky Stone, though. All she wants is to drink beer, listen to her dad’s old vinyl, and get her life back to how it was before everything was all messed up.
Blighters? Frankly, she could do without them.
Suppose you’re just hanging out and then all of a sudden, giant slugs, (Blighters), start falling from the sky. Freaky, right? But what happens if when people get close to said slugs, they begin to experience the happiest, most contented feelings they’ve ever felt in their whole lives? So happy, in fact, they’d be willing to kill, just to feel that way again? You’ll have to read this novella to find out!
Young Becky Stone likes to drink and listen to her father’s old records while she mourns the passing of both her parents. She sees her friend Gail fall under the happy spell of a Blighter, but Becky suspects that something is not right. Now all Gail wants to do is return to the Blighter’s “circle of calm”, but Becky knows that Gail is in danger and she sets out to protect her friend.
This is the funny, strange, science-fiction-y, label-defying scenario that Tim Major dropped me into, so I went with it. There’s so much going on here than just a fun, creature-feature. There’s a mystery, (more than one, really), there’s friendships and maybe even a moral to the story. (In this respect, Blighters reminded me a bit of the old sci-fi mags and even early Star Trek episodes where there were morals thinly disguised in the plots-though I think Blighters did a better job of the disguising.)
And then! Then after the very satisfying end of the story, we learn that Invaders From Beyond! is going to be a novella series from Abaddon Books. Not necessarily about Blighters, but other types of Invaders. This feels to me like the old magazines I read as teen with stories of giant insects, Martians and whatnot. In other words, this sounds like a blast! I’m not sure when the next one is being released or what it will even be about, but I can tell you, if it’s anywhere close to being as good a book as this was, I’m all over that series like a miserable human on a Blighter!
This was a fun, meaty novella that was a creature feature, but SO much more. Highly recommended-especially to fans of the old Sci-Fi/Fantasy stories and magazines!
*A free e-copy was provided to Horror After Dark in exchange for an honest review. This is it!*