Book 16 Available to order!

It is finally the month of October! We are now taking orders for our Halloween issue!

cover art: Unlovely Frankenstein

In this issue we’ve got haunted dolls, incantations, doppelgängers, unsettling children, murderous mermaids and plenty of ghost stories and even the book itself seems a little possessed, if I’m completely honest. 

In Vincent Endwell’s ‘The Doll-Eater’ a little girl is given a Raggedy Ann doll by her grandmother – a toy her mother dislikes. Soon it becomes apparent that the doll is more than just a cheering child’s toy but an object that has opened up something far more sinister than the time-worn cracks of a dysfunctional family dynamic. This is a beautiful and macabre story of the complexities of the mother and daughter relationship and of trying to break toxic family cycles. 

Hannah Mariska’s ‘Mother Earth’ tells of a mother’s grief through the eyes of a nosey upstairs neighbour who witnesses something they shouldn’t. This story skilfully explores the guilt others feel at another’s loss and the distance and loneliness this can create. A slow burner that really packs a punch at the end… 

Mathew Gostelow’s ‘Do Not Read’ is a brilliant take on the popular horror trope of incantations. One night, Jenny, a little girl, requests her father read her a book, The Tallyman, from the library. She is beguiled and enthralled by the pictures of horror in the book until suddenly, her father gets a knock at the door, it seems they have summoned something and Jenny is delighted… children can be horrible sometimes, can’t they?! 

Chloe Gambell’s ghost story ‘Mine’ tells of family trauma. A young woman travels to her maternal homeland to visit her grandparents in Normandy, France, where they live in a former sanatorium. She is haunted on the journey by a woman, bruised and unkempt. The way she looks troubles her. And things, inevitably, get worse once she arrives. This is a tale of things lost and buried secrets. 

‘Dawn’ by Amanda Moussa is an unsettling story exploring the self and the body at the edge of death. At what point do the dying know they have gone? A clever story that will have you looking over your shoulder, just in case… 

Damien B. Raphael’s story ‘Don’t Be A Stranger’ is a weird and compelling tale of a couple’s demise after a fancy dress party. Ryan attends wearing a dog onesie which he doesn’t seem to want to take off, even a few days later when it’s grubby, he still wants to wear the thing, in fact, the onesie is beginning to wear him and he is becoming more and more ‘dog-like’ as the story goes on… brilliantly strange. 

Mari Ellis Dunning’s beautifully told folk horror ‘Rumours’ explores the arrival of mermaids in a small seaside community which, the rumours say, drowned two boys by the rock pools. When the sea mists roll in, when the waves crash over, you never know what is coming ashore… a beautiful take on the mermaid legend. 

William Nuth’s story ‘Forty Foot Drain’ is set in The Fens, ravaged by human destruction, it seems the land is getting its own back when a boatman fishes a half-dead boy out of a fen. It is soon apparent the boy has another agenda; the boy should have been left where he lay… 

David Hartley’s story ‘Rorrim’ is a strange story of doubles and alternate versions of the self. When Rosie steps in front of the mirror and realises she cannot see herself she begins a wild journey akin to getting lost in a hall of mirrors. But she is not alone, even her boyfriend, Darren, has succumbed to the same fate. However, can it be corrected? This story is mind bending fun with a particularly grim finale…

Nine tales of hauntings, hearsay, warped children’s games, horror and weirdness fill this book. Light the fire, settle in, and beware of what you may unleash when turning these pages. 

Order your copy for Halloween now!