Posts Tagged ‘James Everington’

Imposter Syndrome edited by James Everington and Dan Howarth

December 12, 2017 - 11:26 pm No Comments

Imposter Syndrome edited by James Everington and Dan Howarth
Published by Dark Mind Press on 25th November 2017
182 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

What if you see some who looks like you? or you think you are living with the wrong family? These questions and more are answered by 10 authors in this anthology.
I Know What They Look Like by Gary McMahon: A taxi driver picks up a fare and gets more than he bargains for. A great opening to the book and really sets the scene. Strange things tend to happen at night, evil lurks in the shadows. Whilst reading this I was imagining it set as a black and white movie, and felt the apprehension when he picked up his fare and was completing his 1st task.
In the Marrow by Laura Mauro: Most little girls imaging they see faeries, and come up with ways to trap them. Hazel and Tara were no different. However, when Tara became ill, Hazel knew exactly how to cure her. As I was reading this story, I did wonder if Hazel was making the story up to cope with Tara’s illness. A beautifully written story.
Who is that on the Other Side of You by Timothy J Jarvis: Croker and Learmouth are on an expedition to Antarctica. Spitting imagine of each other except for a birthmark. The story of the expedition is writing in actual time, whilst their history was written in the format of a diary. This enabled the story to flow and helped describe the characters in detail. An intriguing story about adventure and betrayal.
What’s Yours is Mine by Holly Ice: After visiting her mom, Sophie finds out a secret that will affect her whole life. Whilst it was early on that Sophie found out her mom’s secret, the author writes it in a way that you think that due to her mom’s illness she is making it up. Throughout the story bits of Sophie’s past is revealed and slowly you realise just how big the secret was. The ending could have been a bit more graphic for me, but I enjoyed how this story was planned out
The Insider by Neil Williamson: A story based on the online world. Raymond is in Italy on business and a similar twitter account is causing him problems. This story explored how it is so easy to pretend to be someone else online. It shows how folk can hide behind a keyboard and post to get a rise from other users.
Other People’s Dreams by Stephen Bacon: Waking up after being involved in a bombing not knowing your past is scary enough, but add to that the graphic dreams, you can understand why he needs to see a doctor. Coming across a double gives him a new purpose in life. I really enjoyed this story, the graphic dreams, memory loss and the psychobabble. It had me wondering throughout what type of man the main character was, was he a murderer. The obsessive nature of the character once he found his double was scary. The author kept you guessing where the story was going.
Hold my Hand and I’ll Take You There by Ralph Robert Moore: This story follows Noah as a boy he battles a life-threatening illness, as a man he falls in love with Audrey, a woman who is suffering with mental health. This was one of the most moving stories that I have read. As a mom reading about young Noah’s suffering was heart-breaking, but the author gave me hope when Noah met Audrey. A twist had me stopping reading for a minute as I did not expect where the story was going. A great read.
The Wrong House by Tracy Fahey: Tom wakes up one morning and finds out that he is in the wrong house with the wrong family. Following Tom over a couple of days, the reason for his feeling is revealed. From the opening paragraph, you know something is wrong, but you do not know whether it is Tom or the house. Scenarios kept running through my mind as I was reading. The author has a way of telling a story that draws you in and makes you want to read more so you can find out what is happening. A heart-rending ending that explains the whole story.
Little Heart by Georgina Bruce: I have always wondered what goes through a child’s mind when their parent is a famous actor. The story explains detachment and how even as an adult it affected her. This story had a film noir feel to it and with scenes involving the film, added intrigue to it. A story that if you read it again, you will find something new.
Virtually Famous by Phil Sloman: From the start this story got me hooked. The opening line “He died a thousand times today and would die a thousand more”. Chet Tyler was fixated on his own game and whilst some gamers wanted to be him others wanted to kill him. The fascination Chet had with the game was unnatural. The author has the knack of making you unsure whether you are reading the gaming or Chet’s experience. The lines of fact and fiction is blurred. You know Chet had a substance abuse but was he imagining it. All this made me want to read more. A page turner with a great ending.
This anthology was a great read and a brilliant choice of authors.

Green and Pleasant Land (Great British Horror 1) edited by Steve J. Shaw

October 15, 2016 - 6:34 pm No Comments

Green and Pleasant Land (Great British Horror 1) edited by Steve J. Shaw: Authors: Jasper Bark, A.K. Benedict, Ray Cluley, James Everington, Rich Hawkins, V.H. Leslie, Laura Mauro, Adam Millard, David Moody, Simon Kurt Unsworth, Barbie Wilde

Published by Black Shuck Books on 24th September 2016

275 Pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

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11 stories all set in Britain. Each story set in a different part of Britain, each with its own horrors.

Hermaness by VH Leslie: A couple going on a hike, their relationship on the rocks (no pun intended) and the oppressing fog. Throughout this story, you could sense that something was going happen, the way the author described the scenery you could imagine walking across the clifftop. I completely underestimated the ending.

Meat for the Field by Rich Hawkins: Many times I have driven through a small village and wonder what secrets the community are hiding. This story is about one such village. Everyone is excited about the up-coming festival except Gregor, the keeper of the cornfield. The author kept the mystery of the festival right to end of this story, building up the suspense and Gregor’s torment.

Strange as Angels by Laura Mauro: What do you do when you find a strange flying creature, this was the dilemma that Frankie had. Frankie had used Jimmy as a crutch through most of her adult life, but caring for this creature made her a stronger person. She began to realise just the type of person Jimmy was and that she could stand on her own two feet. I loved the ending of this story and would like to read more of Frankie after the event.

The Castlemarch Man by Ray Cluley: Charlie was a treasure hunter, but not your metal detector type, he uses GPS co-ordinates to find the trinkets. This story is about Charlie going back to Wales a year after the event, but what event we don’t find out till the end. The author mentions the lead up to the event throughout the story and although you know something has happened to Charlie’s wife Lyndsey, you don’t find out till the end. The Castlemarch Man reminded me of an urban myth, whilst you know he does not exist, there is always that small doubt in the back of your mind.

Ostrich by David Moody: A story about a woman who although having everything in life, is not happy. This story reminded me of an episode of the TV series Tales of the Unexpected and it was apt that the episode I was thinking about was mentioned in the story. You could sense her unhappiness with the obsessive nature of her husband and his lawn. I loved that at the end she found happiness in her new surroundings.

Blue Eyes by Barbie Wilde: I loved this story and the dilemma that Gazza had, when he came across the most beautiful woman with amazing blue eyes. Although you knew that he had already made up his mind to do the act, the ending was a surprise and I must be honest, I found the ending really funny and was laughing way after I had finished the story.

A Glimpse of Red by James Everington: I started off thinking this story was about Beyza and Altan and their life in witness protection. The further I got into this story I started doubting myself, was Beyza having a nervous breakdown, did Altan get taken to stop her testifying. The story was intriguing and even after I had finished the story, I was still thinking about it. This story left my emotions confused as on one hand I felt sorry for her as she had lost her child but then I would think that she was the cause.

Mr Denning Sings by Simon Kurt Unsworth: A Sunday morning church service, an unusual setting for a horror story. Mr Denning enjoyed his Sunday worship, but this Sunday is was disturbed by a mystical creature and a cough. The story was written with a lot of detail and it felt you were at the service hearing the cough. I can imagine what happened to Mr Denning at the end but I would love to read more.

He waits on the Upland by Adam Millard: A main concern of any farmer, is the safety of their livestock, but when the sheep on Graham’s farm gets mutilated he is obsessed in tracking down the culprit. On top of this his wife Jenny is ill, adding to the stress. Whilst reading this story you could feel Graham’s anxiety and although he had little patient with his wife, he was worried about her. The ending was unexpected and I don’t know who was more surprised Graham or I.

Misericord by AK Benedict: Isabelle has spent her whole career studying carvings in churches and with her fiancée Katie spent one afternoon looking at carvings, in quite an old church. That was until something terrible happens.  When I have been in an old church I have been curious about the carvings on display and I loved the way the author incorporated these to tell the story. It kept my interest to the end as I thought that the reverend knew more than what she was letting on, she felt like she was a big cat stalking her prey. The ending made my skin crawl as I have never liked flying ants and this story just enforced that feeling.

Quiet Places by Jasper Bark: We first come across Sally caring for the village folk that are all comatosed. Going back to when they moved into the village, Sally hoped that it would help David open up, but when they come across The Beast, things take a turn for the worse. Running through the story is a creepy voice which is known as Hettie of the Hedgerow. Researching the family history and the local folklore Sally finds out that the Beast is the fault of an ancestor. Whilst reading the scenes in the forest I had goosebumps and you could sense that it was leading up to a final showdown. The suspense carried throughout the story, but even I could not predict the outcome. You could feel the desperation in Sally and the need to help David and his dark moods. For me Hettie was more horrific than the beast as it certainly knew how to play Sally

This book is a great read and congratulations to Steve Shaw for picking 11 great authors. Each story is so different and I loved every single one. I hope there will be 2nd book in the future.

 

The Hyde Hotel: An Anthology of short stories

September 17, 2016 - 10:42 am No Comments

The Hyde Hotel:  Authors: James Everington, Alison Littlewood, Iain Rowan, Dan Howarth, Amelia Mangan, S P Miskowski, Ray Cluley, Alex Davis, Cate Gardner, Simon Bestwick

Published by Black Shuck Books on 5th January 2016

168 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

28483441An anthology of short stories all set at the Hyde Hotel. A hotel that attracts guests at their worst point in their lives, be it a guest who is fleeing domestic violence to a hitman on another job. Each guest has their own story to tell and they all have different experiences when they stay at the Hyde Hotel.

I enjoyed every story, and each one had something different to offer. If you are a lover of Horror, Paranormal, mystery, suspense then you will find a story to read.

My favourites were Wrath of the Deep, I liked the fact that modern met the past, a dirty cop had to retrieve an ancient relic to escape capture, but some decisions are not easy to make. Tick box mainly due to the unexpected ending and Something like Blood, the way the story is told you can really imagine what is going on in the hotel room. To wrap the book up Checking out finalizes your stay at the hotel.

This a great read and the stories let my imagination go wild. Definitely a 5-star rating on the book, but if I had to rate the hotel on trip adviser, would it be a place that I would like to visit, I don’t think so

 

 

Trying to Be so Quiet

July 22, 2016 - 1:02 am No Comments

Trying to be so Quiet by James Everington
Published by Boo Books on 12th July 2016s
52 pages

Reviewer: Yvonne Davies

 

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This story is about a man who has recently lost his wife Lizzie from Cancer, set over a couple of months after her death; it follows his life whilst he comes to terms with his loss.
This book is described as a ghost story, but the way the author has written this book, I think it is more than a ghost story. It is a story about bereavement and how the main character tries and gets on with his life. Whilst you are reading this book you really identify with the main character and you can feel his pain whilst he tries to just survive.

Throughout the house there are memories and he thinks that he is seeing Lizzie, is it a ghost or is it his grief playing tricks? Cracks appear in the house again; I felt that it was the cracks appearing in his life. I enjoyed how the author took him back to Oxford where he reminisced about where they met and were happier. This was the first book I have read by this author and I really enjoyed it. Although this is a short story there was so much packed in to the story it made a quick read, and you will  be lost in the story. Whilst you are reading, this have some tissues nearby because you will shed a tear at the raw grief.

A must read, it was wonderful