Now this is a rarity, I'm actually up to date with issues of Supernatural Tales thanks mostly to wanting to catch up on all my unread zines, chapbooks and the like over this second lockdown. Happily this one was the best issue in a while helped in no small part by stories by three authors I really like.
Carrie Vacaro Nelkin gets things off to a strong start with 'Stricken' a fun little story about the monster under the bed before the very excellent Charles Wilkinson gives a characteristically strange story about starlings and music in 'The Harmony of the Stares'. This is followed by Rosalie Parker's 'The Decision' which is written with her customary eye for the odd and the unsettling but I must admit to being a tad confused by the ending.
Mark Valentine is on fine form here taking a turn as a football pundit and if only all match reports were like this then maybe I'd read the back pages of the newspaper. I wasn't particularly taken with Malcolm Laughton's story which melded 'Kidnapped' with a rose tinted slavery subplot and a vengeful spirit.
I liked William Curnow's 'The Round-About' which came across like a sentimental Aickman and Iain Rowan's 'The Wildness' was a brief but interesting tale of madness before the book ends with Tim Foley's rather obvious ghost story.
Like all compilations Supernatural tales can often be a little patchy but it's always worth a read as there's usually a good story or two or three or, like here, six.
Buy it at the link above.
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