Annal: 2007 International Horror Guild Award for Collection

Results of the International Horror Guild Award in the year 2007.

Book:Dagger Key and Other Stories

Dagger Key: and Other Stories

Lucius Shepard

Lucius Shepard’s new story collection may well be his best yet. In nine novellas and stories, he traces a long-dead pirate’s murderous possession of a Caribbean islander, explains a grand tantric conspiracy, pits a fugitive killer against the malignant energies of the Dragon Griaule, exposes a small Pennsylvania town to a morally fraught extradimensional excursion…and there’s much more.

Written in Shepard’s characteristically brilliant moody prose, these are amongst the finest dark fantasies on offer today.

Book:The Imago Sequence and Other Stories

The Imago Sequence: and Other Stories

Laird Barron

To the long tradition of eldritch horror pioneered and refined by writers such as H.P. Lovecraft, Peter Straub, and Thomas Ligotti, comes Laird Barron, an author whose literary voice invokes the grotesque, the devilish, and the perverse with rare intensity and astonishing craftsmanship.

Collected here for the first time are nine terrifying tales of cosmic horror, including the World Fantasy Award-nominated novella “The Imago Sequence,” the International Horror Guild Award-nominated “Proboscis,” and the never-before published “Procession of the Black Sloth.” Together, these stories, each a masterstroke of craft and imaginative irony, form a shocking cycle of distorted evolution, encroaching chaos, and ravenous insectoid hive-minds hidden just beneath the seemingly benign surface of the Earth. …[more]

Book:Masques of Satan

Masques of Satan: Twelve Tales and a Novella

Reggie Oliver

In his first two collections of supernatural tales, The Dreams of Cardinal Vittorini, and The Complete Symphonies of Adolf Hitler, playwright, actor, and theatre director Reggie Oliver demonstrated his mastery of the classic ghost story. Now, in his eagerly anticipated third collection, Masques of Satan, Oliver shows why he is being hailed as one of the best and freshest new voices to emerge in the genre in recent years.

Many of the tales in the collection draw on the author’s theatrical background, and in such stories as ‘Mmm-Delicious’, ‘Puss-Cat’, ‘Blind Man’s Box’, ‘Grab a Granny Night’, ‘Mr Poo-Poo’, ‘The Road from Damascus’, and the stunning novella ‘Shades of the Prison House’ he takes us backstage into a world of easy friendship and a surface glamour which conceals something much more dark and desperate. Oliver’s talent for pastiche shines in ‘The Silver Cord’, which won the…[more]

Book:Plots and Misadventures

Plots and Misadventures

Stephen Gallagher

If the truth be told the short story is probably the superior form, because there’s no getting away with anything. You get it exactly right or it doesn’t work at all. Eleven flights of fancy and one true story…but it can be hard to say where fancy ends and the truth begins.

In this, his second collection of short fiction, award-winning author and screenwriter Stephen Gallagher delivers his unique take on the weird, the wonderful and the downright strange. These are tales in which the world is very much as we know it, but charged with a sense of the wonders that lie in wait just beneath the surface of our everyday reality. Grisly goings-on in a tattoo parlour…A bereaved girl’s poetic revenge…Hunting fairies with pickup truck and cattle prod…Along with The Blackwood Oak, a novella making its first appearance between these covers, the stories have been drawn together from sources as diverse as Weird Tales, Subterranean, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Winter Chills, and The Dark.

Book:The Shadows, Kith and Kin

The Shadows, Kith and Kin

Joe R. Lansdale

The endlessly inventive mind of Joe R. Lansdale whips up yet another batch of stories to amaze, surprise, and entertain you. His new offering covers a lot of territory, producing what may be his best short story collection yet.

One tale concerns an East Texas mule race in the early 1900s that proves to be an unexpected turning point and learning experience for the main character, a lifelong loser. It also chronicles the unusual circumstances of the race, which include a friendship between a rare white mule that can run like the wind, and his friend, a loyal, spotted pig. Another tale drops us into the disturbed mind of a mass murderer and his friendship with the shadows. Two other stories reintroduce us to the supernatural adventures of Reverend Rains, the flawed hero from Lansdale’s cult favorite novel, Dead in the West. Here ghouls prowl and werewolves howl. There’s a poetic collaboration with Melissa Mia Hall about the nature of loneliness and loss that echoes back to…[more]

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