Beneath the Surface

Beneath the Surface (Revised & Expanded)Beneath the Surface by Simon Strantzas

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Strantzas’s debut collection marks the arrival of a refreshingly different voice in the horror field. But make no mistake, these are tone pieces, more concerned with atmosphere than plot cohesion. You won’t find any Twilight Zone twists or monster mashes here. Instead, you’ll find stories of encroaching darkness, physical and emotional corruption, and cosmic futility. However, the tone remains too consistent throughout the collection, resulting in an unfortunate sameness to the stories and too much repetition of certain themes. Strantzas’s overly formal prose style can also put too much distance between the story and the reader to achieve the desired emotional effect. But as a debut, this collection of horror tales is quite accomplished and far more creative in its imagined terrors than most. I’m eager to read Strantzas’s follow-up collections to see how his themes and style have expanded, and where his impressive imagination will take me next.

View all my reviews

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 

 

News & Updates

  • 09/28/2020 — Harrow County, Vol. 3: Snake DoctorHarrow County, Vol. 3: Snake Doctor by Cullen Bunn My rating: 5 of 5 stars The third volume of Cullen Bunn’s exceptional HARROW COUNTY series takes a break from the main plot of Emmy’s struggle to come to terms with her legacy in order to follow some side characters.…Read more »
  • 09/22/2020 — Anais Nin at the Grand GuignolAna├»s Nin at the Grand Guignol by Robert Levy My rating: 5 of 5 stars Dark, sexy, and written in a suitably decadent prose style, Robert Levy’s supernatural take on historical figures Anais Nin, Henry Miller, June Miller, and real-life star of the Grand Guignol Paula Maxa will leave you breathless.…Read more »
  • 09/17/2020 — Harrow County, Vol. 2: Twice ToldHarrow County, Vol. 2: Twice Told by Cullen Bunn My rating: 5 of 5 stars Emmy’s long-lost twin sister Kammi visits Harrow County to meet her sister and claim her power, setting off a dark chain of events that turns the haints against Emmy.…Read more »
  • 09/09/2020 — Underworld DreamsUnderworld Dreams by Daniel Braum My rating: 5 of 5 stars This is Daniel Braum’s best collection yet, filled with stories that exhibit a masterful sense of ambiguity and explore the tension between the personal and the profound.…Read more »
  • 08/28/2020 — Harrow County, Vol. 1: Countless HaintsHarrow County, Vol. 1: Countless Haints by Cullen Bunn My rating: 5 of 5 stars A fun, fast-moving setup to what I expect will be a highly enjoyable series, COUNTLESS HAINTS combines writer Cullen Bunn’s masterful use of atmosphere and setting with artist Tyler Crook’s vibrant watercolor illustrations to create something truly compelling.…Read more »

Archives

Search