on Nov. 12, 2011 :
If you loved sitting around a campfire, as a kid, and spinning quick yarns to scare the 'bejeezus' out of your friends, then you'll really enjoy "Flash O'Lantern: 13+ Stories," a collection of flash fiction tales by horror writer/novelist Todd Russell.
"Flash O'Lantern" presents 13 Flash horror stories interspersed with Russell's own thematically-related commentaries about memorable October events and trivia. The stories deliver quick, light, entertaining reads, and the commentaries provide plenty of great water-cooler conversational grist. Together they make Flash O'Lantern particularly good reading for people on the go. Here are my four favorite flash fiction offerings from the book:
"Brush" is the creepy story of a homeless guy who, let's say, bites off more than he can chew, when he hijacks a kid's Halloween goody bag. ( I think the National Dental Association should purchase reprint rights to this one and distribute them in dental offices nationwide.)
"Graveyard Crazies" offers a fun, yet spooky, take on working the midnight (graveyard) shift in a supermarket. (Great atmospherics, and some well-done tension-relieving humor.)
"Remdee Gate" won me over immediately with the imaginative concept of the gate itself - an altogether new idea that I've never come across before in sci-fi/horror fantasy writing.
And finally, I found "Rachel's Number" to be a quick, but haunting, story.
(review of free book)