Horror author and poet. Published with Ghost Orchid Press and Horror Tree.
On Twitter @VarianRoss
Manhunt, by Gretchen Felker-Martin
This review contains spoilers ### It normally doesn’t take me just over two weeks to read a 300 page novel. But Manhunt was a heavy, bleak read, and I found myself needing absolute focus to read it. Even though it was a heavy read, I’m glad I sat down with it.
My breath was visible in the January air. For days upon end, I had remained myself. No thoughts of evil had clouded my mind. I had not woken to the direst of circumstances. Perhaps the salt was finally working, and I could remain Doctor Henry Jekyll for the rest of my life.
The young man who sat before Detective Ashmore was caked in mud. Dirt clung to his long blond hair. His hands were covered in blisters from digging a grave. He’d attempted to wash the worst of the dirt from his hands before coming in, but there was still filth under his fingernails. He’d had plenty of time to change clothes before turning himself in. But he still wore the same stained white poet’s shirt.
The Guardian Hives
The Guardian Hives began to stir. They were situated at the edges of the thick, humid forest. The Hives protected the inhabitants of the Planet of Flowers from any intruders, as well as supplying them with food. The wasps pollinated the trees that brought them fruit and nuts. The honey was used for food, as well as soothing wounds. The Hives were attached to the oldest trees on the planet. The Hives had grown along with the trees, so the stories told.
An Abyss of Worthless Sacrifices
The blinds were beginning to gather dust. The man ran his finger along the taunt fabric, coming away with a finger faint with dust. He licked the dust off his finger. It was the closest he’d allow himself to get to the outside world. The taste lingered, and he froze in the middle of turning to the kitchen. A glass of tap water a day, he reminded himself, that's all you're allowed.
The Town of Ants
TW: nuclear radiation, slight gore (radiation sickness), mention of quarantine. “This…is not…a place…of…horror—or is that honor?” Casik squinted at the text he was trying to translate. Time had worn away the sign. “That can’t be right.” At the sound of footsteps, he swiveled his head around to see his boys running into his office.