Title: Beyond the Veil Anthology (Edited by Mark Morris).
Publisher: Flame Tree Press
Date Published: 19th October 2021
Genre: Horror/Short Story
Beyond the Veil is the second volume in an annual, non-themed horror series of entirely original stories, showcasing the very best short fiction that the genre has to offer, and edited by Mark Morris. This new anthology contains 20 original horror stories, 16 of which have been commissioned from some of the top names in the genre, and 4 of which have been selected from the 100s of stories sent to Flame Tree during a 2-week open submissions window.
I want to thank Anne Cater for inviting me on this tour and Flame Tree Press for providing me with a copy of Beyond The Veil in exchange for an honest review.
Last year I read and enjoyed the previous short story collection from Flame Tree Press, After Sundown, last year, so I was eager to see what was on offer this year.
Beyond The Veil is a collection of short horror stories with something for every type of horror fan, from classic monster tales to mind bending sci-fi to gruesome body horror.
I will just put a trigger warning here before I go any further. This novel contains themes of grief, suicide, child abuse, and the death of an animal.
In all honesty, most of the authors were unknown to me, so it was nice to find some new authors to add to my must read list.
Like most types of collections, I found it a good mix of styles. Of course, there were some stories I enjoyed more than others.
My standouts were:
God Bag. The story that followed a man and his dying mum who was in the last grips of dementia. She carried around a strange little God bag containing prayers that started off innocently enough until he started digging. It was both heartbreaking and creepy at the same time.
For All The Dead. A historical story about a young woman who lived in a small fishing village, where life and death were controlled by the sea. There was almost a fairytale-like quality to this one that I found magical.
The Girl In The Pool. A thief breaks into a house planning to rob the place, instead finds a young girl dead in the pool. This was a gripping tale of monsters and morality.
A Mystery for Julie Chu. A young woman has a knack for finding strange artifacts, but when she picks up an old radio from a car boot sale, she gets more than she bargained for. I loved the mix of mystery and spookiness of this one.
The care and feeding of household gods. This is a story about a stay at home dad who makes household gods to help him get everything done. This one took me by surprise, starting off innocent enough, then got more and more sinister. I still can’t stop thinking about this one!
I would highly recommend Beyond The Veil if you’re looking for a variety of short, sharp and shocking stories.
About The Editor:
Mark Morris has written and edited almost forty novels, novellas, short story collections and anthologies. His recent work includes the official movie tie-in novelizations of The Great Wall and (co-written with Christopher Golden) The Predator, the Obsidian Heart trilogy (The Wolves of London, The Society of Blood and The Wraiths of War), the anthologies New Fears (winner of the British Fantasy Award for Best Anthology) and New Fears 2 and many more.