Year's Best Hardcore Horror Volume 2.
Not your mama's best-of horror annual.
This year brings 22 more in-your-face stories that break boundaries and trash taboos, transgressive tales you can't "unread" (as Chuck Palahniuk says).
Some of the stories you'll find here are loaded with very graphic descriptions of violence, sex, and depravities, while others may contain only one shocking moment of brutality. In others, the hardcore aspect may be less graphic and subtler than you might expect. Some of these quieter tales offer the listener some time to recover from the more disturbing ones preceding.
Table of Contents
Michael A. Arnzen "55 Ways I'd Prefer Not to Die"
Jasper Bark "Bed of Crimson Joy"
Christa Carmen "The Girl Who Loved Bruce Campbell"
Marvin Brown "The Field"
Adam Cesare "Please Subscribe"
Matthew Chabin "Father of Dread"
Jose Cruz "American Gods, American Monsters"
Andrew Darlington "Coming of the Darkula"
Paolo Di Orazio "The Contract"
Stefanie Elrick "Mother's Nature"
William Grabowski "Out Hunting for Teeth"
Sarah L. Johnson "Little Sister, Little Brother"
Eric LaRocca "Miss_Vertebrae"
Alessandro Manzetti "Kozmic Blues"
Tim Miller "Backne"
Alexandra Renwick "Redux"
Bryan Smith "Implant"
Jeremy Thompson "The Hallowfiend Remembers"
Tim Waggoner "A Face in the Crowd"
Wrath James White "Ownership"
Stephanie M. Wytovich "On This Side of Bloodletting" & selected poems from "Brothel"
Full list of authors includes: Stephanie M. Wytovich, Paolo Di Orazio, Sarah L. Johnson, Adam Cesare, Michael A. Arnzen, Jeremy Thompson, Stefanie Elrick, Eric LaRocca, Wrath James White, Tim Miller, Bryan Smith, Tim Waggoner, Alessandro Manzetti, and Jasper Bark
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While some of the titles were a bit over the edge, none of them were shocking. I enjoyed most of the short stories. None of the had the time to build a real momentum of suspense.
Joe Hempel did a was very good and at times had a real opportunity to express the feelings of the story. His limitation was the material itself. Some of it lacked the substance to allow express.
I found part very interesting, but personally, compilations just do not give me time to get into a storyline. I received this title for free in exchange for an unbiased review.
Short stories I found extremely interesting were "The Field" By Marvin Brown, "Redo" by Alexandra Renwick, "The Girl Who Loved Bruce Campbell by Christa Carmen.
- Paul Freund
Graphic and gritty
- Rabid Reader