(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review).
(This review may contain spoilers).
This collection of short stories was… well, I’m not sure what the exact word I’m looking for is, though ‘gruesome’ and ‘disturbing’ spring to mind. It was interesting to read a collection of stories that were all linked together.
I thought each of the short stories were really well-written, even though the subject matter was particularly disturbing in places. While I did find some of the short stories a bit confusing and harder to follow, the ones I did understand were particularly effective and I was able to picture a lot of the events happening in my mind.
Because most of the stories were so short, it was hard to really get to know any but the main characters. The Fly was a story that resonated with me. The descriptions of the fly were horrible, but not actually gruesome. Just the mention of creatures like flies and maggots is enough… and it was interesting that it wasn’t exactly clear if the fly was real, or just existed in Thomas’ mind. Either way, the main character’s descent into madness was described very well… and I couldn’t help but feel a lot of sympathy for Sionn and Clay. It was an interesting style choice, to show the story from the POV of the character who was gradually losing his mind.
The first story in the collection, Skin, was especially gory. It did a good job of setting the tone for the rest of the collection, but I found it hard to understand why the main character in particular was in that kind of situation.by the end of the book.
The short story with the transient was especially creepy, as was the one directly correlating to that. I wasn’t all that fond of the Ringmaster story, even though I did think that the idea of the carnival was an interesting one and something I would have liked more background of, since it seemed like a very… unique version of an afterlife.
I didn’t really understand the story with the window… and the one about the ‘artwork’ was pretty horrible to read.
I’m sure I’d be interested in reading more books by these authors in the future… and I’d be inerested in learning more about the world shown in this collection of short stories.