Sunday, June 24, 2012

Review for Demons and Other Inconveniences by Dan Dillard

"This man is either brilliant in his writing or one of the most creatively gifted psychopaths I know". Said Black Pearl after reviewing this book...



Winner of Risqué Reviews Top Pick Award










Title: Demons and Other Inconveniences
Author: Dan Dillard
Release Date: 1 June 2010
Genre: Horror Anthology
Pages: 184
Publisher: Smashwords
Series: N/a
Format: ebook/Kindle
ASIN: B003OYIGXM

Posted: June 22, 2012
Reviewer: The Black Pearl
Rating: 5
Heat Level: N/A



Summary/Blurb:

This is a collection of 17 short horror stories including Pig Man, Ingrate, Demon of Walker's Woods, Unlucky in Death as well as 7 new shorts previously unavailable. Each one deals with a different demon, some tangible, some festering from within...all deadly. A collection of short horror stories for grown-ups with non-traditional twists and a bit of dark humor.

While reading Demons and Other Inconveniences by Dan Dillard, a few of the thoughts that ran through my mind were as follows:

How did he do that? (awe)
Why did he do that? (silently sobbing)
Wow.
He’s my new best friend.
Curse you Dan Dillard!!!
Did I lock the front door?
I need a brighter night light.
Just…wow.
This man is either brilliant in his writing or one of the most
creatively gifted psychopaths I know.
What’s the balance in my checking account? I must purchase
everything he’s written!
What’s the balance in the childrens’ college fund? I must
purchase everything he’s written!
SO MANY FEELS!!!
Would it be blasphemy to call him the god (little g) of horror
for the new millennia?

Seriously folks, I battled back and forth between giving this book a rating of 4.5 and a 5 because this would be the second rating of 5 I’ve given a book in a limited number of reviews and I didn’t want to be thought of as the reviewer who hands out 5’s like Ritalin in a class of first-graders the day after Halloween. Yet to give this masterpiece anything less than a 5 would be doing it, the author, and me as a reviewer and book fan-atic a huge injustice. The only negative thing I could point out about this book is the hideous cover which might have prevented me from reading this book under different circumstances. Hopefully others will stick to the old adage of "don’t judge a book by its cover" and snatch up a copy of Demons and Other Inconveniences.

When reviewing anthologies, I like to give each story its own rating with a rating of five stars being ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT, 3 stars being Meh, It Was Okay and 1 star being Could Have Went Without Reading. My rating for the stories included in Demons and Other
Inconveniences
are as follows:

Rolling Meadows – 5 (I adored the main character in this story and found myself amazed at
how Dan Dillard could create characters that you feel like you knew or
wanted to know. A great story that takes place in a setting you don’t read about
often in horror – a retirement home.

Pig Man – 4 (The title alone gave me the creeps. After viewing the original
Amityville horror, I have a thing with pig sightings of any kind. This story
reiterates why.)

Confessions – 5 (Every mother’s worse nightmare.)

The Trash Menagerie – 3.5 (I would say this was the weakest story in the collection. Yet even Dillard’s "bad" is good.)

Infestation of the Third Kind – 5 (This story deserved more than a rating of 5! It went above and beyond! Seriously! Sci-fi has to be one of my least favorite genres but this
post-apocalyptic tale with a sci-fi twist was genius! I did not want it to end and have considered contacting the author to politely request, beg, or subtly demand he turn this short into a full-length novel!)

IndiviDUALITY – 4 (I actually liked the protagonist in this story. His views on
individuality, religion, society, etc. gave one food for thoughts and I even
found myself nodding in agreement from time to time. Too bad he was a homicidal
maniac.)

Anticipation – 4.5 (Wow! I did not see that one coming!)

Geometry – 3.5 (I enjoyed this story yet wish there was a definite conclusion. I
suppose that was the entire point of this tale, however.)

Ingrate – 4 (I knew there was a reason I didn’t care much for dogs.)

Amber Alert – 5 (Chilling story. Word of warning to fellow ‘carnivores’ – don’t read this while eating.)

My Mind’s Eye – 4.5 (Admittedly, I first thought this to be the least favorite story in the collection and was tempted to skim through it but am so glad I did not. Once my mind wrapped around what this story was about and realized the truth of it, by its conclusion – I was shook up for a few minutes. Brilliantly executed.)

The Wrong Place – 4 (Ha! Unique twist to what I believed to be a predictable story.)

Never Judge a Book – 5 (Another great story with an expected ending. I laughed out loud several times while reading.)

The Frank Diary of Anne – 4.5 (Haunting. Left me wondering about the fate of "baby
dearest".)

Unlucky in Death – 4.5 (Bob the hippie/surfer/stoner who happens to also be the most
fascinating and hilarious vampire caused me to bump this rating up by .5)

Rotten Luck – 5 (This story is why I love short stories! When an author can, in a few
short pages, convincingly and expertly tell a story that totally engages all of your senses in a way that leaves you wanting more yet feeling completely satisfied at the same time – that author has mastered the short story! Another reason that this story rocked? Zombies. Enough said.

The Demon of Walker’s Woods 5 (This story was an emotional roller coaster ride. One minute I thought I knew what was going on and then Bam! I’m hit with something that leads me down a different path. A tale that will resonate with just about every adult who had the "scary old witch" in their neighborhood.)

Although it wasn’t mentioned in the table of contents (or list of scaries as Mr. Dillard refers to it), It is a Pleasure to Meet You is a poem that introduces the reader to the distorted world of Dan Dillard and lets them know they are in for a treat. I read it four times with awe and
appreciation before I could proceed with the rest of the book. In fact, I thought I’d read this brilliant little piece and then shut down my Kindle for the night…er, early morning…but lo and behold and an hour and a half later, I was half-way through the sixth story and reminded again of why I love the horror genre.


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