a_bailey's review against another edition

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4.0

Actually a 3.5. This was an excellently written anthology, but many of the stories were not to my taste.

shanz77's review

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4.0

I really enjoyed this collection overall. There was a decent variety of voices-ish. As usual I would have liked to see a bit more diversity but in general it is a strong collection and the way I'd like to see Noir heading. Good stuff, if you want to dip your toe in it is a great starting point.

chursh's review against another edition

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3.0

Pretty good. Some creepy stories, but some were just depressing/about the human condition. My first foray into "Dark Fiction", a genre I wasn't too familiar with.

motherhorror's review against another edition

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4.0

I suppose Neo-Noir fiction can best be defined as "dark fiction". This anthology edited by Richard Thomas collects stories from amazing authors blurring genre lines.
I think most of these stories take that delicious horror tension and use it in a new way.
Rebecca Jones-Howe's story, BLUE HAWAII is the perfect example of this. The unreliable protagonist has someone else's infant in her care and this creates this overwhelming sense of dread throughout the entire story. Every turned page feels like YOU the reader are responsible for remembering the baby but the character is attending to her own selfish needs.
FATHER, SON, HOLY RABBIT by Stephen Graham Jones is one of those stories where the reader feels the truth of what's happening nipping at the edges of your mind but the author keeps it hidden until just the right moment. It's a soul crusher.
There are some compelling tales about killers...DIAL TONE by Benjamin Percy & THE ETIQUETTE OF HOMICIDE by Tara Laskowski.
This is an older anthology that I decided to pick up on a whim so I had already read Paul Tremblay's story, IT'S AGAINST THE LAW TO FEED THE DUCKS (this one is in GROWING THINGS) which I loved and also Craig Davidson's RUST & BONE (also found in Davidson's short story collection with the same title)-a haunting, gripping story that is rough on the feels.
There were some stories I didn't read all the way--I just skipped to the next but there were only a few. Overall, this anthology is one for the collectors. The cover is great and the interior design is beautiful; little illustrations accompanying each story. I'm glad I own this one.

maleficentknits's review

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4.0

Received an email telling me I won a copy of this book to review back on 14 Mar 2014 but still nothing. I really would like to read this, if it ever finds its way into my library, home or public.

Well it took several weeks to receive my copy but it finally arrived, and as soon as I finished book I was reading at the time, I dove in. I have to say that this book surprised me with some hits and some misses. Most of these authors were not afraid to push boundaries and take that extra step as close to the edge as possible to darken the story, twist the knife, and make you realize that your life may not be so bad after all.

Stories that stood out for me:

Stephen Graham Jones' *Father, Son, Holy Rabbit* ~ Father and son caught out in a blizzard and the rabbit that saves them. I had my hopes up on just how this story should end and was not disappointed at all. And no, I'm not a *happily ever after* kind of gal.

Lindsay Hunter's *The Baby* ~ A incestuous family tale.

Kyle Minor's *The Truth and All its Ugly* ~ Family violence begets more violence with an unexpected surprise.

Benjamin Percy's *Dial Tone* ~ Telemarketers are people with feelings, too.

Roxane Gay's *How* ~ reminded me of those old *How Br'er Rabbit...* exploit stories,except this time we learn about how Hanna turns her life around.

Craig Davidson's *Rust and Bone* ~ brilliant mixture of a boxer at the end of his career reminisces his life and what he's learned.

Craig Wallwork's *Dollhouse* ~ Dollhouses always make me think of playing a god-like creature over others' lives.

Matt Bell's *Dredge* ~ Find drowned girl, put her in your deep freeze, find her murderer.

Not a bad mix at all. I'm glad I had the chance to read this book and I will definitely be looking out for some of the authors and what other little nuggets they have out there for me to read. I will definitely pass this book on for others to read.

Thank you for sending me your book to read, Mr. Thomas.
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