The Collapse Of Ordinary: Steve L. Clark
Reviewed By Simon Paul Wilson
For me, 2021 has been a great year for short story collections. So far, I’ve read three absolute belters, and am very happy to be able to add a fourth to my list of cracking reads.
The Collapse Of Ordinary is the debut collection by Steve L. Clark, and what a debut it is. Get ready to spend some cash, horror fans, as you need to buy this book!
My first encounter with the work of Mr Clark was in the Dark Words anthology. His story, Cold-Blooded suitably impressed me, so I was very keen to check out his first book. Happily, The Collapse Of Ordinary didn’t disappoint. I read the book in two sittings and was left eager for more. I reckon there’s a good chance many of you good folk will feel the same as I.
The collection kicks off in style with The Night Auditor. If there’s anyone out there who still thinks empty hotels are a cool place to be at night, then this may change their minds! It may also make readers a little wary of podcasts.
Considering this is his first collection, Clark writes with the skill and confidence of someone with a few books under their belt. His stories hook you from the first sentence, and don’t let go until the horrors within have chilled your blood.
There were also a few times when I found myself genuinely touched by what I had read. Gone Fishin’ is a good example of that, and one of my favourite tales in the book. If you like a zombie apocalypse yarn that’ll tug on your heartstrings, this is the one for you.
The Collapse of Ordinary has no fillers. Each of the dozen stories had something that appealed to this reader of horror. However, there were three that stood out and really hit the spot for me, Gone Fishin’ being one of them. Victims Of The Elements is the second. This short and gory tale was excellently written, and the ending was just brilliant. Top marks, Sir!
The third story I’d like to mention is Fabric. This had a real Neil Gaiman feel to it, which I absolutely adored. Never did I think I’d be so taken by a story about knitting. This dark fairytale was truly wonderful stuff.
The Collapse of Ordinary is a thought-provoking and scary collection of horrors. It’s got plenty of twists and turns, and some genuinely creepy moments. From zombies to UFOs to demons, this book has lots of frights on offer. I loved it and can’t recommend this book enough. Definitely one of my favourite reads of this year.
Mark my words, Steve L. Clark is a name we are going to hear more of in the future. Personally, I can’t wait to read more of his work.
The Collapse Of Ordinary
What happens when horror and madness collide with reality?
For most of us, life is a routine of the same chores and responsibilities. We are ordinary people doing ordinary things, unaware of the chaos closing in.
A hotel auditor gets more than he bargained for from a scary story podcast
A trip to the casino turns sinister with more on the line than money
A graveside funeral service spirals into a web of mind-shattering revelations
These horrors and more await you within. Cast aside your doubts, open your mind, and embrace the insanity.
Walk with me into the Collapse of Ordinary.
Simon Paul Wilson
Simon Paul Wilson is a U.K. based writer of horror and science fiction.
He is currently writing a cyberpunk horror trilogy, the first of which is GhostCityGirl and was published by Not A Pipe publishing in 2020.
Click this link for more info: Ghost City Girl
There now follows a list of writers who have influenced his reading tastes and writing style:
James Herbert. Stephen King, Shaun Hutson, Clive Barker, China Mieville, Haruki Murakami, Carlton Mellick III, Brian Keene, and Adam Nevill.
Simon lives somewhere in the middle of England with his wonderful family. He likes to listen to post-rock and progressive rock at loud volumes. He also plays a mean air bass.
Follow him on Twitter: @spwzen