DANCING IN THE SHADOWS: A Tribute to Anne Rice, edited by Elaine Pascale & Rebecca Rowland
Yuriko Publishing 2022, pb, £11.91
Reviewed by Mario Guslandi
Conceived as a tribute to the legacy of famous writer Anne Rice, the present anthology includes nineteen new stories aimed to recreate and further develop the gothic themes and the dark atmospheres of Rice’s literary work.
As customary with short story anthologies, both excellent, well-accomplished tales and ordinary material lacking originality cohabit under the same roof, although I’m happy to say that in this particular volume, the good stuff prevails over the run-of-the-mill and misfires are just a few.
Focusing on the best stories of the lot, here are my own favourites.
“The Rosary of Broken Promises” by Greg Herren is a quite enjoyable tale where a psychic has to deal with the remnants of a long-gone murder that occurred in the house where she just moved.
“The Layover” by Douglas Ford is an unsettling, sinister piece set in a small airport where an aeroplane has to land because of the bad weather and where weird things take place.
The entertaining “A Freshening Wind” by Gordon B White revisits the old cliché of a mansion inherited after the death of a distant relative and is graced by a nice, unexpected twist in the tail.
Lamont A Turner contributes the enticing “Green as Life”, featuring a man obsessed with the portrait of a dead young woman whose body lies in the local cemetery.
In the engrossing “ Unrest” by KC Grifant, the career and the life of a serial killer are abruptly stopped by a paranormal intervention, while in the disturbing “ Moss Manor” by Lee Andrew Forman, the sinister reality hidden inside a gorgeous mansion is finally revealed.
Interesting stuff, isn’t it?