Possessions, Porcupines, Cthulhu cultists, drug-fuelled horror conventions, and some unexpectedly risqué shenanigans at Santa’s Workshop make up just a few of the stories in Bram Stoker award-winning author Lucy A. Snyder’s latest festive collection of horror shorts. The Halloween Season contains fourteen stories ranging from horror and sci-fi to comedy and urban fantasy, many of which are themed around every horror fans favorite holiday.
The range of stories on offer here is incredibly varied. The books opening story (“Hazelnuts and Yummy Mummies”) is a weird and psychedelic trip through a book convention, fuelled by hallucinogens and hiding a deeply affecting family drama underneath the chaos whereas the closing short (“The Toymaker’s Joy”) is a gleefully smutty comedy about one of Santa’s elves finding her true calling at the North Pole. The different tones and genres all packed into The Halloween Season practically guarantee that everyone will find a different story that stands out as their own personal favorite.
One of the highlights for me was “In The Family”, a first-person narrative of someone being welcomed into the family, with a great twist ending. “The Great VüDü Teen Linux Zombie Massacre” was easily one of the strangest and most memorable stories I have ever read, and quite possibly the only one I’m ever likely to read featuring a remote-controlled zombie-killing badger.
Fans of all things Lovecraft will find themselves well served, with the collection offering up two tales (“Cosmic Cola” and the “The Kind Detective”, the latter being a close second for me in terms of the books strongest story). Some stories are quick, fun reads that entertain without drawing focus from the longer, more seriously toned tales. “A Preference for Silence”, a darkly comic sci-fi tale, would make a fantastic Twilight Zone episode and “The House That Couldn’t Clean itself” is a hilarious cautionary tale of choosing one’s housemates wisely. This story definitely struck a chord with me as someone who spent a few years living in shared student accommodation.
Not every story felt like a hit on the first read-through, however, although the different styles and genres that are all packed into The Halloween Season probably guarantee that not every story will resonate with every readers’ personal preferences. “Wake Up Naked Monkey, You’re Going To Die” was a little too odd for my tastes and “Visions of the Dream Witch” and “What Dwells Within” lean heavily into fantasy (Southern Paranormal with the former and Urban Fantasy for the latter) that managed a lot of world-building in a relatively short space, but felt like chapters or excerpts of a larger work rather than a satisfying short in their own right.
An eclectic mix of stories makes The Halloween Season an enjoyable and unpredictable read. Snyder’s imagination runs wild with inventive and unique tales with a broad appeal. The huge array of different genres at work may mean that a few stories may not appeal, depending on your personal reading preferences, but it won’t hamper your enjoyment of an overall entertaining collection.
Halloween Season by Lucy A. Snyder
Amazon.com Price: $4.99 (as of 04/11/2021 02:01 PST- Details) Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Master storyteller Lucy A. Snyder has filled her cauldron with everything that Halloween means to her and distilled it into a spell-binding volume of stories. Within these pages you’ll find thrills and chills, hilarity and horrors, the sweet and the naughty.
DescriptionHalloween is the most wonderful part of the year for many of us. For dedicated fans, the season begins when the leaves start turning autumn colors and doesn’t finish until Hallowtide ends in November. With it comes a whole lot of fun: scary movies and stories, haunted houses, seasonal sweets, spooky decorations, costume parties, and of course trick or treat. But Halloween is also a deeply spiritual time for some; it’s an opportunity to remember and honor loved ones who have passed on. Master storyteller Lucy A. Snyder has filled her cauldron with everything that Halloween means to her and distilled it into a spell-binding volume of stories. Within these pages you’ll find thrills and chills, hilarity and horrors, the sweet and the naughty. One of the best things about Halloween is you don’t have to be yourself. So go ahead and try on a new mask or two … you may discover hidden talents as a witch, a pirate, a space voyager, a zombie fighter, or even an elf. This is the perfect collection to celebrate the season of the dead or to summon those heady autumn vibes whenever you like. You may even find a couple of tales that evoke a certain winter holiday that keeps trying to crowd in on the fun. In the worlds within this book, every day is Halloween!