Cold Comforts: Marianne Halbert
Reviewed By Steve Sted
I recently posted on Twitter and Facebook about an update on my site’s review requests sections and reminded folks to reach out if they needed a review. The response was fantastic – and the amazing Marianne was the first one to email me!
I’d not read any of her work, so this was a double bonus!
What I liked: ‘Cold Comforts‘ is a collection of thirteen dark stories. In her biography, Halbert describes her writing as “slow burn horror” and I gotta say that is spot on. From the haunting ‘Bone to Pick‘ to the brilliant ‘Hey, Karen‘ every story had its intensity ramp up from zero to ten over the course of the pages.
I have to give special mention to the opener ‘When Betsy Whispers.’ This was one of the single best short stories I’ve ever read. It was hypnotic in its beauty, but soooo bleak at its core.
What I didn’t like: I always sound like a broken record here with collections, but a few stories missed the mark with me. Saying that, the ones I didn’t connect with, may well be the stories another reader enjoys the most!
Why you should buy it: As I said, if slow-burn horror and thrillers are your jam, Halbert is a master. Otherwise, grab this purely to discover Betsy. That story will stay with me forever.
A school bus stops at the home of an isolated family whose unusual children have a unique way to scare off their enemies.
A vacationing couple discovers something deeper than their love resides within wine country.
Objects in the attic of an old farmhouse come to life seeking retribution.
A peculiar girl discovers she has a strange ability.
These thirteen tales will take you from the farms and woods of the heartland, to prison and the south of France. Whether you’re crunching through the snow wondering what’s moving behind you, or sitting by a campfire listening to a tale of revenge, pull a blanket tight around your shoulders and be prepared for an impending chill to race down your spine.
Steve Stred writes dark, bleak horror fiction.
Steve is the author of three novels, a number of novellas and four collections.
He is proud to work with the Ladies of Horror Fiction to facilitate the Annual LOHF Writers Grant.
Steve is also a voracious reader, reviewing everything he reads and submitting the majority of his reviews to be featured on Kendall Reviews.
Steve Stred is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, his son and their dog OJ.
You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred
You can follow Steve on Instagram @stevestred
You can visit Steve’s Official website here