Reviews

The Bone Mother, by David Demchuk

ashtheviking's review against another edition

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2.0

Did not enjoy reading this. The stories that did draw me in weren't long enough, it seemed as if Demchuk had some brilliant ideas but didn't know how to follow through and so just chose to end the stories. Then the longer ones were boring. A book this short felt like a struggle to get through some times- I only finished it in the hopes that there would be more glimmers of creepy brilliance but unfortunately did find them. I did not see the value of the two parts- there was some degrees of inter-connectivity but it seemed rather flimsy it either should have been more connected or completely independent. Everything about this fell flat to me including the vintage photos that have received much acclaim by others. I was excited about this so I am rather disappointed.

danocrates66's review

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4.0

3.5 stars, rounded up. This book consists of a series of not so much short stories as loosely related vignettes. They are each preceded by an old photograph depicting a protagonist after which the story is named. While the individual episodes are well written, display good character studies, and are atmospherically and emotionally punching, I would have liked more of a connecting thread throughout the entire book. Solid weird fiction nonetheless.

isobelthewizard's review against another edition

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4.0

This book was delightfully horrifying. I ached for the truth within these stories, and will probably do a full Ukrainian research spiral in the wake of this book.

The book is written in short stories, all from the first perspective. Some are told by the living, some by the dead. The book divided into two halves, "The Thimble Factory" and "The Night Police." It took me a while for the common threads between the stories to shine through, but when they did I was floored. Myth and legend, monsters and men, future and past, all swirling together in a thought provoking text that grapples constantly with the terrors of history.

liszante's review against another edition

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5.0

I want to write a review, but I've been busy and now I'm tired, but I am rec'ing this book for anyone who likes slavic folklore, folklore in general, matter-of-fact horror (not scary horror, but like old folk song horror), and having more questions than answers. This book sketches out a world and lets it breathe, expects the reader can fit the pieces together and understand the whole, takes for granted that the reader will care. Many of the vignettes are haunting. This is such a good book to read in October.

meghan_is_reading's review against another edition

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Eastern European style monstrous folktales, short stories, light horror, much creepy. paired with archival photos of real people and some illustrations of those Russian nesting dolls. I like the photos better, esp when they show decay. but I'm an archivist so go help preserve them at http://colectiacosticaacsinte.eu

emmamd210's review

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.0

While I believe the book summary at the back of the book to be somewhat misleading, it was an incredibly interesting dark and twisting tale. I found the way the novel was constructed fascinating and while many of the stories were excellent, a few somewhat missed the mark.

grauspitz's review against another edition

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3.0

3.5

More of a horror collection than I expected it to be.

Generally speaking I enjoyed (if one can enjoy these types of stories) most of the stories but for the ones I did not I felt as if a part of the story was missing, that the author didn't fully explain the situation and left it half done. But, for all I know that was intentional.

Definitely a good collection to pick up near Halloween.

blueimelda's review

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? N/A
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.0

kpach's review

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adventurous dark mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? N/A
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.25

deandeffett's review against another edition

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dark mysterious sad tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25