If you go into the woods, be sure to go in disguise. There be monsters in this anthology!
It Calls From The Forest contains 24 horror short stories on the theme of dark things lurking among the trees. I found this to be a very solid anthology, with stories of a high standard. As with any themed anthology, there were some stories that covered similar ground, and stories that I liked more, and liked less, but all together I enjoyed every story in this anthology, which is rare.
My favorite story is tied between Getting Away From It All by Greg Hunter, and Forestman by Holley Cornetto.
Hunter’s story is so original and creepy that I don’t want to say too much about it for fear of spoiling it. It was a strong stand out for me.
Cornetto’s story is more familiar, concerning a group of children who find something strange in a cave in the woods, but it’s told well, with just the right mix of mystery versus exposition, and enough about the characters to make you care for them.
Other stories I particularly liked were Lazarus’ Respite by Michael Subjack, where a group of bullies in the woods find a dead body, and Fairies in the Forest by Jason Holden, which describes nicely the nasty little fairy idea – think Hellboy type fairies.
I commend Knotwork Hill by C.W. Blackwell for taking a popular theme – witchcraft in the woods – and giving it a satisfying noir feel.
I’ll also give a shout out to Tim Mendees’ two stories, which were both well written and had great atmospheres. I particularly liked a character in Rouse Them Not shouting “cooey” from her bicycle at two killer trees. It’s a blend of horror and humor that appeals to me.
I award It Calls From The Forest…
It Calls From The Forest is available for $2.83 ebook and $13.99 print book on Amazon.
I received an ARC of this book from BookSirens in exchange for an honest review.