Collected, but Connected, Horror Short Stories

Alphabet Soup for the Tormented Soul by Tobias Wade and Multiple Authors is a collection of twenty-six short horror stories. Twenty-six letters of the alphabet, each story has a title beginning with one of the letters. Alert (not asleep) readers will note that several of the stories have the number twenty-six somehow worked into the tales. This is a bunch of stories; I have a comment for each one. I purposely did not look in advance at the table of contents to find out what titles letters such as X and Q would introduce. Z is too easy but I purposely did not look. The suspense adds to the fun. I received this book through an email subscription to Haunted House Publishing a site run by Tobias Wade. Therefore, it was a free download. There are periodic offers of free downloads from Haunted House Publishing. Check it out if this is one of your favorite genres.

A is for Addiction                   David Maloney           There are all kinds of addictions. Danny and his friends shared. Many times, Danny partied with three friends only to wake up with two. What is going on? He will figure it out. Later, as an English teacher, he will have something to talk about.

B is for Barnacle                     Michael Squid            If you are a fan of biology, here is your opportunity to increase your vocabulary. You may not be able to use all your new words at parties, they describe gruesome events, but you will sound educated.

C is for Clairvoyance              Ryan Cook      This Clairvoyant could see into the past and the future. But Mom told him not to. In this case, do you agree with the unnamed protagonist? Whether you do or not, Moirai is watching.

D is for Daniel                        Dover Hawk   This is for all those who insist on being “lefties,” left-handed.

E is for Echo                           Tobias Wade   As you read this, think of “famous last words.”

F is for Formaldehyde            Kyle Alexander           Some neighbors just do not want to listen. This tenant has a message for the bothersome dwellers of his apartment complex.

H is for Hegemonic               Rafael Marmol            Drew Dayton loved his sister Barb. Drew also loved the church. If he had to choose, which one would he choose? And no matter the choice, could he live with it?

I is for Ideation                       Jack T. Anderson       This is a real mind over matter story.

J is for Jackass                        Saint Entropy              Cops do not like to be called “Pigs.” Believe it.

K is for Kinky Serial Killers   Bak Hayong               Dad wanted to be sure to spell the names of his kids right. Several of his friends probably did not agree.

L is for Lunacy                       Chris Thompson          Chris is a scientist. He likes to do research and he has been lonely of late. His friends want to help him. All he must do is open the door.

M is for Mirror                        Jacob Mandeville        Mirrors have a function, they reflect reality, that is their only job. What happens when one mirror, or an inhabitant of the mirror, decides to do more?

N is for Necrosis                     J. Y.                 There are some stories which require you to hold your nose while reading.

O is for Olivia                         Marni Sue       Olivia lost a lot in the auto accident, physically, at least. But what she gained made up for it.

P is for Prey                            Kaitlynn Cooney         This is an instruction manual for choosing the correct prey, following through with the kill, and disposing of the evidence. Kate gives very specific instructions. Guess how many there are!

Q is for Quota                                     Kelly Childress           Just when you thought the curse was over! This is another reason to ban Dash Cams and USB drives. It is too difficult to escape the past.

R is for Romance                    Mikey Knutson           Chris was worried about the effects of his latest sexual encounter. But he had learned something new. It didn’t really take that long.

S is for Sable                           Noah Rex        Sable lane holds memories. Sable lane also has a huge tree that has truly become a part of the community.

T is for Time Travel               John Buffalo   One thing about time travel, you must be punctual. Maybe it would be good to have more than one watch.

U is for Undelivered               Harrison Prince           This story gives an entirely new meaning to “globalization.”

V is for Venom                       The Custer Wolf         Veronica might be lying in this story. Or she might really be helping Damien. This is one of those “reader decides” stories.

W is for West Bale Path         P. F. McGrail              This is a story that puts lots of things together. This is the reason you are reading this far into the collection.

X is for Xenophobia               Claudia Winters          Where, or which one, is the true Olivia?

Y is for Your Match               Kyle Burton                There are Matches. And Tinder. And Candles. And Portals. This almost could be a date from Hell.

& is for Ampersand                Christopher Maxim     A personal warning to the reader on what to look for and what measures to take to avoid cataclysmic annihilation.

Z is for Zodiac                        Alex Baran      Imagine the disappointment of Olivia! This is a nice ending that wraps up for the book for everyone except Jeremy.

This collection is, for the most part, fun. There are a few stories, I will not name them, that would be even better with minor proofreading. Not editing, proofreading. Why minor? Because the editing required would catch minor typos, incorrect word usage (bare, bear) and missing words that result in some incomprehensible phrases instead of meaningful sentences. I still gave this four Amazon stars for the cool idea of getting so many authors together to make such a collection and for the overwhelmingly good writing. I also liked the interesting line drawings that pop up unexpectedly between stories.

As complete as this novel is, there is still room for a future with Hannah. That will be up to some or all these talented writers.

 

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