Showing posts from July, 2019

Nathan Ballingrud Double Feature Book Review

After reading the short story “Atlas of Hell,” in Ellen Datlow's  Fearful Symmetries,  anthology, I looked up Nathan Ballingrud on Facebook and told him how much I loved the story. He seemed pleased that I had responded positively to what he described as a real change of direction. I mentioned the story to several friends, one of whom told me, “You think that story was good, you should read his collection, North American Lake Monsters .”  I’ve been writing and reading horror since I was a teenager, and that book was unlike anything I’d read before.   Lots of people have pointed out over the years that horror is the only genre named after an emotional reaction. The stories in North American Lake Monsters are actually less about the monsters than they are about that emotional response. They aren’t just horror stories, they’re stories about horror –   the emotional fallout that monsters leave in their wake. It is riveting and devastating and merciless. It reminded me of nothi