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Book Review

Book Cover

Tales From the Weekend


Authors: David J Howe, Paul Lewis, Steve Lockley, Simon Morden, Justina L A Robson, Darren Shan, Sam Stone and Freda Warrington
Publisher: Telos Books
RRP: £12.99
ISBN: 978 1 84583 120 2
Publication Date: 02 April 2017

Tales From the Weekend is a horror fiction anthology of eight stories from the guests at the 2017 Sci-Fi & Fantasy Weekender. It is published by Telos on good quality paper, and features cover art by Steve Crisp and a sketch drawing by the popular artist Jeff Cummins. Limited copies are hand-signed by some of the contributors: in the case of my copy, by Freda Warrington, Paul Lewis, Darren Shan, Steve Lockley and Simon Morden.

The Road to Holly Tree Farm, by Paul Lewis: A man’s partner suffers a car accident returning home in the snow. He receives a number of broken phone calls, and rushes off into the night to rescue her. A competent story with the hint of an unknown threat which may or may not explain the conclusion.

An Affair of the Night, by Darren Shan: A human and vampire love story across decades suffers an inevitable conclusion; but not the one you might think. Blissfully, this is a million miles away from the Twilight approach.

Back at Six, by Freda Warrington: A horror tale very much rooted in real-life problems. This one keeps its feet on the ground and is all the more powerful for it. The conclusion shares somewhat similarities with the first story. A man desperate to get back on good terms with his wife, after a past misdemeanour, takes their young soon and the dog for a picnic day out across ancient ground – with unforeseen circumstances.

Madswitch, by Justina L A Robson: A female ex-scientist takes steps to ‘correct’ her dysfunctional family. An enjoyable psychological tale of the science of horror, which at times becomes too bogged-down in the real process of progressive bio-science.

Don’t Bite Your Nails, by David J Howe: A young man leaves the comfort of the nest to rent his own apartment, after being raised strictly to not bite his nails. However, he soon discovers clipping his nails can sometimes be worse. A fun short tale from the Telos Editorial Director which makes its point concisely.

Walking the Dead, by Sam Stone: When a boy’s grannie and then his school teacher expire, only to return to a semblance of life and carry on as normal, it is only the start of many more. But what do you do when it is discovered the zombies are benign? Whilst the authorities, the general public and opposing factions fiercely debate the situation, the boy and his two closest friends start a Zombie Walking business. I find the majority of zombie stories and films extremely tedious. But this is a new take on the premise. It’s both humorous and thought-provoking , and probably the best of the bunch on offer here.

Life in a Northern Town, by Steve Lockley: A group of homeless boys are attacked by a monstrous beast and seek refuge in the church. A period werewolf story. Perhaps the most conventional and predictable story on offer here.

Hollow, by Simon Morden: An oil rig north of the Orkneys suffers catastrophic damage when a huge section of the sea opens up. More of a science fiction disaster story than a horror – what you might expect from an ex-scientist.

I had to smile at the title of this collection when I first saw it. It reminded me of the barber shop cliché, ‘Something for the weekend, sir?’ Anyway, this is a fun collection of horror tales written in an easy-to-read manner as to make it assessable to teenagers, old age pensioners and every interested party in-between. It’s also a nice personal touch to have signed copies available. I have only one reservation and that is the Recommended Retail Price. People may find that £12.99 is a little steep for only eight stories (albeit good ones).


Ty Power

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