Published by Wicked Run Press Genres: Dark Fiction, Extreme Horror, Horror
Buy on Amazon
The intoxication from a pint of vodka, the electric buzz from snorting cocaine, the warm embrace from shooting heroin--drinking and drugging provides the height of human experience. It's the promise of heaven on earth, but the hell that follows is a constant hunger, a cold emptiness. The craving to get high is an intense yearning similar to that which is felt by any blood thirsty monster.
The best way to tell the truths of addiction is through a story, and dark truths such as these need a piece of horror to do them justice.
The stories inside feature the insidious nature of addiction told with compassion yet searing honesty. Drug overdoses are now the leading cause of accidental deaths, and some of the most incredible names in horror fiction have tackled this modern day epidemic.
A WICKED THIRST, by Kealan Patrick Burke
THE ONE IN THE MIDDLE, by Jessica McHugh
GARDEN OF FIENDS, by Mark Matthews
FIRST, JUST BITE A FINGER, by Johann Thorsson
LAST CALL, by John FD Taff
TORMENT OF THE FALLEN, by Glen Krisch
EVERYWHERE YOU'VE BLED AND EVERYWHERE YOU WILL, by Max Booth III
RETURNS, by Jack Ketchum
Garden of Fiends is an unflinching and intense collection of addiction stories from some of the best authors in the business. It is not for the weak of heart, but neither is addiction. Let’s take a brief, but closer look at the tales within:
A Wicked Thirst by Kealan Patrick Burke: Alcoholism is no joke and many find that they cannot quit on their own and seek out help from programs like AA. This story does not shy away from the absolute power that is addiction and then it slays the reader with its powerful ending. 5*
The One in the Middle by Jessica McHugh: This tale was twisted as twisted can be. (At least I thought so until I read Max Booth III’s story, but more on that in a moment.) A hard, direct look at the downward spiral of addiction and the other crimes associated with it. After all, drugs often cost an arm and a leg. 4*
Everywhere You’ve Bled and Everywhere You Will by Max Booth III: Combine a heroin addiction, blood everywhere and spiders and what have you got? You have this graphic and dare I say… disgusting?, tale of heroin dependence. You’ll need a strong stomach for this one, but I think it’s worth it! 5*
Last Call by John FD Taff: This was another story of alcoholism. This one shows us that there are no shortcuts to sober. 4*
Torment of the Fallen by Glen Krisch: Demons abound in this story and not all of them are drug related. 3.5*
Garden of Fiends by Mark Matthews: A tale about how addiction affects everyone surrounding the addict. It floods out like the ripples on a calm lake, as do the effects of eating anything from this particular garden. 5*
Returns by Jack Ketchum: here we have another tale of alcoholism, but with the twist of also involving a ghost. Short and to the point, this one punched me right in the gut. 5*
To be all technical about it, my ratings add up to a 4.5, but after thinking about this collection overnight, I think it adds up to more than the sum of its parts, so 5 fat stars it is!
My highest recommendation to those readers who are strong of heart!
*I was provided a free e-ARC in exchange for my honest review. This is it!*
**Further, I consider Mark Matthews a friend, albeit online only. This did not affect the content of my review.*