Dreams Of Lake Drukka & Exhumation: Mike Thorn
Reviewed By Steve Stred
- Print Length: 48 pages
- Publisher: Demain Publishing; 1 edition (27 Sept. 2019)
“There’s no mystery about it.”
If you’re not keeping an eye on Demain Publishing’s Short Sharp Shocks! book series, you’ve been missing out. I’ve read a number of them from such great authors as Calvin Demmer, Yolanda Sfetsos and now I’ve added Mike Thorn to the list. At some point here, I’ll need to collect them all and make my way through all of them.
Last year I dove into ‘Darkest Hours’ by Thorn, an amazing short story collection. Oddly enough, for some time we were living in the same city in Alberta and it wasn’t until I moved three hours north that we connected.
Thorn returns here with two short stories, but as he mentioned prior to release, they were originally written as separate pieces, but it wasn’t until after he had them done that he saw they were companions. The themes in both do work really well, which makes for a great pairing.
The first story, ‘Dreams of Lake Drukka,’ was the highlight for me. We follow two estranged sisters who return to their small town. One sister has had a startling dream and she knows that the key to finding out what’s pulled her back is at Lake Drukka. Thorn created such a creepy piece here, it was outstanding. The reveal for the supernatural element was great fun and the descriptions were top notch. I thought the resolution could have been a tad more fleshed out, but it was satisfying none the less.
I know people hate when reviews say this – but I’d absolutely love to see this story as a full length. Thorn has the bare bones here to create a story of such deep grief, childhood pain and the ugliness of family fractions to deliver a stunning novel. It had moments where it reminded me of Andrew Cull’s latest ‘Remains.’ Maybe Mike will read this and realize I’m a genius and deliver! (Most likely he’ll think I’m insane!)
The second story was good, but after ‘… Drukka,’ I ended up feeling a bit let down by ‘Exhumation.’ Don’t get me wrong, the story is solid, the characters were great and the “what’s going on” at the funeral created for some great tension. But ultimately the story didn’t deliver such a massive bang for me as ‘… Drukka.’ Definitely a great companion piece and people are thoroughly going to enjoy it.
My closing thoughts – great to see the return of Thorn. For new fans – definitely check this out, it’s a great introduction to Mike’s work. For returning fans – two awesome stories that will make you itchy for more.
Dreams Of Lake Drukka & Exhumation
Dreams of Lake Drukka and Exhumation explore the unearthing of horrific, long-buried family secrets. Journeying into the darkest recesses of the past, these stories depict the dire consequences of discovering the truth.
Steve Stred writes dark, bleak horror fiction.
Steve is the author of the novels Invisible & The Stranger, the novellas The Girl Who Hid in the Trees, Wagon Buddy, Yuri and Jane: the 816 Chronicles and two collections of short stories; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of Black Magick, and the dark poetry collection Dim the Sun.
On September 1st, 2019 his second collection of dark poetry and drabbles called The Night Crawls In will arrive. This release was specifically created to help fund the 1st 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 visit Steve’s Official website here