Grotesque – Monster Stories: Lee Murray
Reviewed By Steve Stred
I’ve had Into the Mist on my Kindle for some time now, the first book in Lee Murray’s Taine McKenna series. When Grotesque: Monster Stories was offered for review, I jumped on it. What a splendid way to finally read Murray’s works and get excited to dive into Taine McKenna’s world!
Murray is one of the nicest and most supportive people in the horror world and her recent awarding of the HWA Mentorship award shows just that!
What I liked: Grotesque: Monster Stories shows Murray has some serious writing chops. This collection of 11 stories runs the gamut of styles and subjects – there really is something for everyone. Historical fiction – check. Lovecraftian Mythos – check. Devastating emotional work – check. Just fantastic stuff.
What I didn’t like: I did find a number of the stories were left quite open-ended which in a collection made me wonder whether its related to another piece or there’s a part two kicking around in the future. Minor gripe, but I wanted some answers ha!
Why you should buy it: Well, we should support someone as awesome as Lee, we should support women in this genre and we should support amazing writers. The first story in this – ‘Grotesque’ was a fantastic piece of historical fiction where we get thrown into a discovery of a hidden door under a museum in France. We then get thrust back to 1500’s France and learn the truth of what’s on the other side of the door.
And wowsa did ‘Selfie’ reinvent the post-apocalyptic survival trope. Loved it!
The real gem for me was easily ‘Heart Music.’ A flash fiction piece that told the story of a romantic grave robber.
For Murray fans, you’ll be excited to see the collection ending with a new Taine McKenna story, which was a fun time and made me excited to dive into book one!
This had something for everyone and I think it’s a great place for new fans to start!
Grotesque: Monster Stories
11 short stories from the imagination of New Zealand’s multiple award-winning author and editor Lee Murray! Contains 4 original stories including a new adventure in the much-lauded and awarded Taine McKenna series!
Steve Stred is the author of a number of novels, novellas and collections. He has appeared in anthologies with some of Horror’s heaviest hitters.
He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada with his wife, son and their dog OJ.
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