Welcome to the South. Where some traditions are better off forgotten. Where some beliefs are based, not on the Bible, but on what men want you to believe. Where behind the hospitable smiles are angry snarls trailed by the feral snaps of rabid people.
Welcome to the South. Where a house stands lonely on a hill, its owner a man deformed by life. Where children aren’t quite as naïve as they appear. Where the darkest secrets are found within its families, and where dying sometimes isn’t the end.
Welcome to Southern Bones, a collection of eleven short stories from the mind of A.J. Brown.
PERFECT FOR HORROR READERS ON THE GO
**Note: I purchased a copy of Southern Bones by A.J. Brown from Amazon and this is an honest review. Southern Bones is a collection of 11 well-crafted short stories of various themes.
Characters are what A.J. does best and my stand-out favorite of the bunch is the second story, Mickie’s Stars. Mickie is a young girl whose flesh is scarred in star-like patterns which glow when she is angry. When she notes a young boy and later a little girl being mistreated during a beach outing, she sets out to make sure justice is served. How, you ask? I don’t want to spoil anything so I’m just going to say she has her ways.
The Woman Who Loved the Red Stucco House resonated with me because I’m a bit of a perfectionist and I saw a little of my own obsessive behavior in this woman who wanted everything “just so”. Like all dark tales, the twist comes when the man in her life has taken about all he can of her nit-picking.
A Family Affair opens with a family attending a gallows festival where, of course, there are hangings. In this tale, everything (including disrespect and infidelity) is punishable by death and the family’s secrets cause their share of problems. Do you have teenagers? You do? Then this story is probably for you. Another great twist ending!
Beneath the Sycamore Tree is a touching tale of first love so deep that it spans years and defines one young man as he grows into early adulthood. When a little girl is murdered, she haunts the swing outside the home of her first love who is determined to uncover the identity of her killer. This one is my second favorite.
All in all, this is an excellent collection of stories that explore the themes of abuse and retribution in The South. The diverse cast of characters assures there is something for everyone and while there is definitely darkness inherent in these tales, the pages are not splattered with gore. Some stories are longer than others, but this is a perfect mix-up for horror readers on-the-go.
Southern Bones in an engaging collection from beginning to end. The characters are well-written. You will forget they are works of fiction as you view the world (and its many dark secrets) through their eyes. No two stories in this collection are alike. This book offers a ton of variety from a strong voice in horror, and all for an extremely fair price on Kindle. I highly recommend it!
I’M ALWAYS LATE
I’m on the road a lot for work. Sometimes I have scheduling issues and have to wait for appointments. In these times I rely on Guys like Richard Matheson and Isaac Asimov for short story companionship. Little burst of entertainment while I wait. I will now add AJ Brown to that list. This is a good selection of creepy clever stories…AJ Brown has away of creeping up on you with his scary.
Southern Bones I enjoyed it thoroughly, the different characters in each story. The stories each with horror and mind play were excellently written. The enjoyment of every twist and turn. Thank you for bringing some real nightmares too life!
I loved this book, the writing is amazing. Most anthologies are a bit hit and miss; there were only one or two stories in this one that felt a little weak. Overall though the stories were quite varied and entertaining and I was drawn right in. There were just a couple of little typos (it should be moat, not mote)which is a pet peeve but I am so glad I grabbed this book and I will be seeking out more by this writer.
There are twists and turns galore in this amazing collection of short stories by A.J. Brown. The characters are well defined and the stories flow as your mind takes you through many emotions. Love, hate, laughter, pain, hope, despair and terror. He writes of the good and bad in people, the beauty and harshness of the world and the joy and devastation of love and loss that happens to us all. What you take from each story will be different from what others do. To me the stories gave me thoughts of treating people kindly even if they’re different, enjoy the beauty of life even during terrible times, never let anyone try to change you to their way of thinking, believe in yourself and possessions are just that, don’t let them become obsessions. I have read most if not all of A.J. Brown’s books and highly recommend them to anyone who enjoys great story telling. Well done A.J. Brown and I’m looking forward to reading more of your great stories.