The Blurb on Other People’s Words – Fresh Blood

December 31, 2012 at 10:54 pm (horror, Reviews, writing) (, , , , , , , )

Fresh Blood Anthology

I’m not much of a vampire fan, so the fact that I’m giving this 4 stars says something positive about this anthology. It had great flavour and ambition, the kind of winning diversity I’ve come to expect from MDP anthologies and all of the stories were reasonably well written on a technical level. On the other hand, I found a couple of the stories felt like a chapter pulled out of a longer work, where the story seemed unfinished at the end. I also have an aversion to cliché old-school Dracula-esque vampires (a la “I vant to suck your blood” motif) and paranormal romance vampires, and there were a little of those mixed in. I’m more of a vicious “30 Days of Night” or original and really out there vampire kinda gal. On the whole, however, this was a pretty solid anthology, especially considering it was composed of newly published writers. Here are the stories I consider the highlights of the anthology:

Scene Girl by J. J. M Czep – I liked this one, but I would have preferred a more linear plot because I found myself confused in places with regards to the order of events and I’m still not sure if I have the story straight even though I read it more than once. Nevertheless, it was a fun read.

240V by Peter Bailey – I really enjoyed this story and despite the fact that I wanted to hate the protagonist because he is a sleaze-ball with a misplaced sense of entitlement, I still found myself feeling sorry for him at times. A very creative vampire tale that might shock you.

Bedbugs by Patrick Evans – By far my favourite story in the anthology, with a very original story-line (a plot that held my interest well), fantastic characterization and a delightfully scary ending. It also had a goodly dose of dark humour.

I’d say there’s something for everyone here: stories heavy on the gore with highly disturbed characters, some with a taste of the exotic, old-fashioned tales with a historical element and stories rife with highly descriptive imagery. I’m sure all types of genre fans will find at least one story in here to their liking.

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