Dark, Disturbing, Mind-Wrecking
Did you wake to the sound of the garden gate rattling in the night, or an unexplained creak in the living room floorboards? Is something stirring in the basement?
Are you, the reader, safe in the train carriage on your commute home from work? Are you safe at night reading in the comfort of your favourite armchair or do you lay awake at night clutching the baseball bat?
In this terrifying collection you’ll find renegade filmmakers, masked maniacs, opportune thieves, and disturbed individuals. People you interact with every day who have dirty little secrets. Do you really know what your neighbours are up to?
From Robert Essig, author of Stronger Than Hate, In Black and Death Obsessed; and Jack Bantry, editor of Splatterpunk Zine, comes 11 tales of horror and examination of the dark side of human behaviour that will fray your nerves, leaving you to double and triple check that you’ve locked the door at night.
Listen closely. Is that the sound of a shovel you can hear, digging your shallow grave?
Shallow Graves is a short story collection from Robert Essig and Jack Bantry containing stories from each author and a few they wrote together. As one might expect from these authors, this collection is dark, disturbing, and full of mind-wrecking horrors.
“Starving Artist” by Essig is a twisted psychological horror with a touch of the paranormal. The building tension and horror leads you down a path of madness will-you-nill-you.
“The Itch” by Bantry is a fast-paced graphic tale of consequences written in Bantry’s classic extreme horror style.
“Clarissa” is written by both Essig and Bantry. This is a brutal, horrifying tale of imprisonment, torture, and unimaginable revelation. This story turned out to be wholly unpredictable. It crosses boundaries as only slatterpunk can do. Check your intestinal fortitude before you dive into this one!
“Like Ants on a Carcass” by Essig messed me up. Messed. Me. Up. This is a horrifying extreme horror statement of humanity that is too close to truth for comfort. It’s terrifying in its detail and premise.
“Special Delivery” is a gem of an extreme horror short by Bantry. This is one of those stories that catches you off guard, then really sticks it to you. Fast and fantastic.
“A Lesson in Renegade Filmmaking” is by both Essig and Bantry. This is a disturbing and ultimately horrifying tale of youthful innocence and hidden horrors.
“Dermousfusion” by Essig is a creative sci-fi horror where the terrifying state of humanity is still not as horrific as humans themselves.
“Rejected” is a fast-paced, brutal werewolf story by Bantry. This story has classic elements as well as modern adaptions and, of course, Jack Bantry’s expert extreme horror touch. A great read for all werewolf fans.
“Wicking” is a twisted Splatterpunk tale by Essig and Bantry. This story starts out with a bang and just keeps pummeling your brain. Interesting to me are the underlying elements of social commentary. These are seamless, integral parts of the story, not blatant or distracting, but they spoke to me.
“By Maggots be Driven” by Essig is a haunting tale of insanity with a touch of extreme horror ew to keep it rolling. While I found it to be a bit predictable due to the flowing forshadowing, that did not take away from the building tension for me. This is one of those gripping stories you can’t put down.
“Keep Safe” by Bantry is a tale of bad decisions with a surprise ending I cannot begin to comment on without giving something away. This was a fun read.
Fans of Robert Essig and/or Jack Bantry do not want to miss this eclectic collection. Extreme Horror fans who have not had the pleasure of reading these authors also do not want to miss this. It is an impressive and shelf-worth extreme horror addition to one’s collection. Just keep in mind, this is extreme horror and much of the subject matter is not for the easily offended or the squeamish.
Get it on Amazon: getbook.at/ShallowGraves
About the Authors
Robert Essig is the author of Death Obsessed, Brothers in Blood, In Black, Salpsan, People of the Ethereal Realm, and Through the In Between, Hell Awaits. In addition, he has published nearly 100 short stories, several novellas, and numerous book reviews. Robert lives in Southern California with his wife and son.
Find out what he’s been up to at robertessig.blogspot.com.
Jack Bantry is the editor of Splatterpunk Zine. He’s the author of The Lucky Ones Died First (Deadite Press) and Ain’t Worth A Shit, (Sinister Grin Press) – the latter co-authored with Robert Essig. He has also edited numerous anthologies, including the Splatterpunk Award-winning anthology, Splatterpunk Fighting Back. He resides in a small town at the edge of the North York Moors.