Say Goodnight to the Bad Guy by Aaron Garrison
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Editor T.W. Brown labels this a “Hard R” anthology; this is indeed not a collection for the weak of stomach nor the faint of heart or mind. These Bad Guys are down and dirty, cunning and omnivorous (they’re equal opportunity Bad Guys) and readers will more than likely come away with a strange dream set the night after reading them. If you’re like me, a particular few of the stories will replay in your mind, over and over, long after the anthology’s final page is finished and the book is closed and set aside. But you’re not going to know which particular stories overwhelm your senses, warp your mind, and plant their roots in your subconscious-until you read them all. So go do it.
For me, the stories that grew roots were the eternal melancholia of Chantal Boudreau’s “Silence in the Court,” the “I-just-didn’t-see-this-coming” startlement provided by Harley Pitts’ “Abraham of Harlon,” (unforgettable), and the superb, no-way-I-could-have-guessed incredible “The Caged Doll” by Adam Millard, a taut, compact, gory, violent, delectable winner. Now every story is worth the reading, don’t get me wrong; but as readers, we are all individuals, with divergent tastes. I’m just telling you what I liked best. Now go read this Anthology and find your own personal “bests.”
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