Greener Pastures: Michael Wehunt
Reviewed by Steve Stred
I first came across Michael Wehunt on this very Review site. Michael had contributed a guest post called “10 Non-Occult Things That Helped Me Write My First Novel” in May.
The article was fascinating and so I looked into his collection Greener Pastures.
This collection is dark in the best way possible. Every single story is grounded in reality and based on simple fears that anyone reading the story can relate too. Excluding the last story, every story also invokes/involves some aspect of occult or paranormal tampering that sends the story off into a frightening direction.
The beauty of this collection is that there is not one single stand out story. Everything is elevated to such a level of horror and reader enjoyment that even now, I would be hard pressed to choose my favourite.
Wehunt tackles it all here over these 11 tales. The found footage thrills of October Film Haunt: Under the House is made all that more extraordinary by the multiple POV usage. The collection’s name sake Greener Pastures is a haunting look at an essential part of Americana – the long haul truck driver. A Discreet Music will let you watch a man transform while pining for lost love. Wehunt though will go for your jugular with tales of sadness and loss, which is how he ends the book with the back to back heartbreakers of A Thousand Hundred Years and Bookends.
From the odd to the extreme to the haunting Wehunt delivers. If you haven’t purchased this book yet, I think it’s time you make the investment.
Star Rating (out of 5): 5*
In his striking debut collection, Greener Pastures, Michael Wehunt shows why he is a powerful new voice in horror and weird fiction.
From the round-robin, found-footage nightmare of “October Film Haunt: Under the House” to the jazz-soaked “The Devil Under the Maison Blue,” selected for both The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror and Year’s Best Weird Fiction, these beautifully crafted, emotionally resonant stories speak of the unknown encroaching upon the familiar, the inscrutable power of grief and desire, and the thinness between all our layers. Where nature rubs against small towns, in mountains and woods and bedrooms, here is strangeness seen through a poet’s eye.
They say there are always greener pastures. These stories consider the cost of that promise.
Steve Stred is an up-an-coming Dark Horror author. Steve is the author of the novel Invisible, the novellas 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.
Steve also has a number of works on the go and enjoys all this horror, occult, supernatural and paranormal.
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