Tuesday, August 9, 2016
Book Review: Fright Tales by Eddie Morales
The cover is pretty nifty, although a small voice in the back of my heads wonders, 'Hm, should I be censoring this for its graphical content?' I don't believe that is the case, but kudos either way for an eye-catching cover.
There are a lot of stories packed into 132 pages-thirteen in total. Rather than go through them individually I think it would be better to discuss the book as a whole, as several stories carry over the same strengths and weaknesses.
One thing that I liked in Fright Tales is how some of the stories have a serial nature to them, meaning they will end at one point in the book and pick up later after a few stories. This comes off pretty naturally and I wish more books like this would consider doing the same.
However, the style of writing was very hard for me to read at times, and it boils down to the old 'show, don't tell' rule. There is a lot of things established as a narrative in some of the stories, which could have easily been done away with and would have been far stronger as a result. This can even reach the point where characters simply could not know things except for the fact that the author says they do-one example being 'Bite of the Female Vampire'-how the heck did the main character know there were vampire hunters on the same train, especially since they barely spoke to each other in the story?
My favorite stories out of the collection were 'A Shopaholic Killer', and 'The Lady is a Bug', as that has the least amount of narrative spoilers and a good antagonist-in fact, if the whole book was about 'a shopaholic killer' (a cannibal that also has a shopping addiction and a son she cares about), I would have enjoyed it quite a bit more. My least favorite stories were probably 'The Hunched Monkey' just for the sheer amount of background narrative, and 'The Burning Sorceress'-just because I generally didn't enjoy the story due to how witches are portrayed. But that's more of a personal impression than anything else.
FINAL GRADE: 2.5 out of 5. This book has some great content, but the technical details of the book need to improve before I can score it higher. My advice to the author is to cut back a significant amount of the establishing dialogue which will also increase some of the mystery and appeal of the book.
Fright Tales can be found here.
Eddie Morales' interview can be found here.