Child of Chaos

Rated 4.50/5 based on 6 reviews
Birviodish upstart Kenhesho discovers the power of fear. A Tale of the Shining Lands. More

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  • Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
  • Words: 2,340
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 9781466161238
Tags: fantasy
About Ron Leighton

Born of gypsy parents in a small Romanian town in the shadows of the Transylvanian Alps, Ron began writing fiction at the beginning of this sentence. Um, is there time for a do-over? In the Year of Our Lord nineteen hundred and sixty five, and in Albuquerque, NM, the very corazon you might say, of the Land of Enchantment, Ron was born. He started writing after he read Tolkien’s 'Lord of the Rings'. I mean, right after. It was like he was abcessed. Er, obsessed. Along with Conan stories by various people, including Robert E. Howard, of course, Tolkien proved to be an unavoidable inspiration. The twists and turns of his life, especially in the last 10 years, have colored his writing with both humor, sorrow and, he hopes, heart.

In addition to promoting his short stories, 'A Cheerful Smoke for the Dead,' 'Child of Chaos' and 'Beneath a Vengeful Sun,' he is busy shopping a full length novel called 'Belt of the Wolf: A Tale of the Shining Lands.'

Learn more about Ron Leighton

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Daniel Swensen reviewed on on Nov. 11, 2011

A concise, gruesome little story with a stark twist at the end. A perfect short read.
(review of free book)
Mackenzie Brown reviewed on on Nov. 1, 2011

A well written and compelling tale set in the fantasy world Ron has painstakingly created. The characters are well drawn and their stark existence beautifully portrayed. The story also had a nice pace and like all great short stories you are right in the centre of everything from the first word, right up until the nicely worked twist. Well done Ron, highly commended.
(review of free book)
Tessa Jones reviewed on on Oct. 17, 2011

From the first page, you are dropped immediately into Leighton's dark, starkly painted world. There's no room here for purple prose. Child of Chaos is short, to the point, and delightfully twisted, a tale of perception and power misused. The pacing was spot on, and the ending satisfying. Highly recommended!
(review of free book)
Maureen Hovermale reviewed on on Oct. 12, 2011

A masterfully crafted short story. The author knows how to create vivid characters that reach into the readers' minds and live.
This knocked me back with the intricacies expressed in such a short amount of time. I would buy anything he writes after a sample like this.
(review of free book)
Ron Knight reviewed on on Oct. 6, 2011

“This is an absolutely terrific and entertaining story.” ~ Ron Knight
(review of free book)
Darryl Ellrott reviewed on on Oct. 5, 2011

I’ve never made it a secret that I’m a comic reader from way back. I preferred the superhero genre, but I was also partial to the horror and mystery comics as well. Instead of the multi-issue story arcs so popular with the former, titles like House of Secrets, The Witching Hour, and Tales of the Unexpected dealt with shorter, more compact morality tales. These magazines were the watered-down 1970’s descendants of the famous EC Horror yarns of the 1950’s, the ones that almost got the comics industry run out of business. Even though these titles lacked much of the graphic violence of their predecessors, they still packed some punch with their twist endings, many of which involved grim supernatural justice being done on some wrongdoer.
Ron Leighton’s short story “Child of Chaos” simultaneously evokes Abercrombie, Jackson, and Gaines. As in Joe Abercrombie of First Law fame for the setting and characters, horror icon Shirley Jackson of “The Lottery” for plot and theme, and William Gaines, publisher of EC comics for the ending. The story deals with a group of iron-age villagers who must decide how to deal with an unwelcome visitor to the town’s granary. The village elders argue amongst themselves about whether the stunted and deformed creature they’ve captured, the “Child of Chaos,” is truly a monster. Should it be killed or released? Has the town’s food supply been defiled by the touch of a demon, or should the creature be treated like any other trespassing animal?
First let me say that Ron Leighton can write. He’s got pro level skills. The time, place, and setting are all painted in deft strokes. There’s none of the purple similes and overdone description of fantasy novices who are trying too hard. This little one-act is primarily a dialogue piece, and Leighton’s exchanges are spot-on and snappy. These are real villagers arguing among themselves. The clichés are kept to an absolute minimum. Like Jackson’s famous “Lottery,” “Child of Chaos” is all about the conflict between Society and the Outsider. There’s even a little bit of Dogma vs. Reason thrown in. As for the ending (which I will not give away,) well, as the Crypt Keeper would say, “Heh, heh, heh!” “Child of Chaos” is very short, but well worth reading ‘cause it’s so well written. I’d give it 3 ½ stars out of five. See you soon!
-- Darryl
(review of free book)
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