I found the selections diverse and well written. This collection is worth checking out. Jul 20, GracieKat rated it really liked it Shelves: kindle-horror-anthologies.
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I always enjoy themed anthologies. I love to see what different authors can do with the same general idea but spun in their own ways and directions. I was drawn to the theme of this anthology for various reasons. My dad is a retired trucker. First on oil fields, then over the road with their own truck. I went with on occasion and the road and stops in-between can be really weird sometimes.
I also love to drive. Enough to know that those long, wind-y backroads are creepy and dark. They're also I always enjoy themed anthologies. They're also the most interesting. I do find it interesting that most horror themed road stories take place on deserted country roads, usually at night personally, city driving scares the bejeesus out of me, having to switch lanes like some demented game of Frogger There is something unnerving about driving through deserted stretches of tree shadowed roads even during the daytime.
Highways can be creepy due to the anonymous nature of the cars on the road with you. So let's check out these tales of back road and highway horror. When I rate stories in themed collections I don't just rate on the story alone but how well it keeps to the theme, or doesn't as the case may be. It didn't really grab me that much. Not from Detroit - Joe R. Lansdale Joe R. Lansdale's stories are sometimes hit or miss for me sometimes but this story was great.http://ncof.co.uk/agente-x-eclipse-n-61.php
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It was moving and very realistic. What Margie says seems overly dramatic but I've said the same thing. It's link with the road was a bit tenuous, the character was not very engaging and I had no idea what the plot was even going for. Hugsy - Robert Ford This story was very good. It kind of reminded me of a cross between The Babadook and Before I Wake but also had its own flair to it. Swamp Dog - Lisa Kroger Again the story is very tenuously connected to the road theme.
It is a good story but it seems like it would belong in a creature feature anthology better than one named "Lost Highways". No Exit - Orrin Grey Rest stops are pretty creepy. Not the well-lit Welcome Centers or the truck stops serving all-night breakfast but the dim stops off the freeways and highways.
I've heard of so many real and unreal horrors about them that they just creep me oout. No Exit plays on that fear very well. It also has a very Silent Hill feel to it as well which caught my interest. I loved the ending. It was perfect and not anything that I was expecting at all. The Long White Line - Michael Bailey You can kind of see where the story is going but it's a great story all the same.
It reminds me of that song 'Six Days on the Road', not the whole thing, just the lyrics "I've been popping little white pills and my eyes are open wide". I imagine that's the song Tracy is hearing in her head. Jim's Meats - Kelli Owen When you're on a freeway you might want to keep an eye on your gas gauge Michigan popped up!
I'm sorry but how is Michigan not used more for horror!? Although when it is I noticed that it's usually set in Northern and Upper Michigan. That's right. We'll freaking eat you if you come North. I don't think that's really a spoiler with a title like Jim's Meats. So, so good. I have to admit that it made me tear up. It's just very, very depressing as well. You start out knowing that things are ad and as you continue you know they're only going to get worse.
Much worse. Titan, Tyger - Jonathan Janz This story captures perfectly that feeling of helplessness when you're riding shotgun in the passenger seat. Even if it's someone you know and trust there's a vulnerability to being passenger in a couple of tons of steel, hurtling down the road at fifty miles an hour. And you have zero control over your destination or even your own well-being at least the illusion of it. A fact I'm fully appreciating now that the Tiny Tentacle is of driving age.
Couple that feeling of helplessness and entrapment with an otherworldly passenger and you've got one heck of a good story. Your Pound of Flesh - Nick Kolakowski A very good twist on the vanishing hitchhiker story and with an ending I didn't see coming at all. Requital - Richard Thomas I couldn't get into this one quite as much as I wanted to. The imagery is beautiful and terrifying but the story just wasn't there for me.
A bit different. I don't really see the connection to the road unless they're going more for a 'path' sort of thing. I did really like the story, though. Outrunning the End - Cullen Bunn A very good story that plays with your expectations. Is Brandon mad? I guess you'll have to read it to see!
Motel Nine - Christopher Buehlman This story was very unsettling. I'm sure it was supposed to be and the author did a great job of it. Was The Gentleman Satan? What did he say? I need more!! Another that most likely takes place in Michigan. We're on a roll. Although, thinking on it, it shouldn't be too surprising given that Detroit was once the car capital. The story itself was a very interesting "What if?
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With a bit of a different ending. The Widow - Rio Youers A very interesting idea. It makes me think of those stretches of road where accidents happen for no apparent reason. Very well-conceived and executed. Lost Highways is a great collection of stories.
The emotions in them don't feel cheesy or hackneyed. They feel real and in many cases raw.
Recommended highly. Although I would like to add one little thing just for me. Driving while drowsy is dangerous. I feel the need to add that as many of the stories revolve around people driving for days on coffee or energy shots. Please don't do this. Thank you, that's all I wanted to say.
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Received from Crystal Lake Publishing for review consideration Very rarely do you get an anthology with this many stories and not find a bad one in the bunch. There's always a weak story or two, or those that don't hold up to the others in the book. Not in this one! I can only imagine the stories that were rejected for this anthology, because from start to finish, every story was unique and great on its own. I really hope a second volume will be published in the future, but this will be a tough act to follow.
Jul 20, mamalovestoread rated it it was amazing Shelves: arc. When you've finished Lost Highways, you'll never look at a road trip the same way again. The stories in this anthology all have elements that were very relatable in their mundane simplicity that once or twice after I'd finished the book I'd find myself in my car, on the road or flicking on the car stereo and I'd have a momentary and uneasy flashback to a scene from one of the stories. As if right? But this story left a lingering sense of paranoia that trumped any rational part of my brain. Reading for me is much more than just churning through words on a page, it's about the emotional intensity, the aftertaste and the sense of connection.
This particular story latched on and didn't let go. There is good consistency throughout this anthology. Rarely are so many of the stories in a collection all on point but these just came together really well and some of the more speculative stories still have me lamenting and pondering the end and wondering So much so that I may revisit this post on further reflection and add some more defined thoughts on possible subtexts. Alexander Ward is out now in paperback and ebook from Crystal Lake Publishing. For author line-up, quality of writing, sub-genre variety, thematic consistency and overall ability to trigger the senses it cranks up a very worthy 5 stars from me.
Jul 20, thebonebreaker rated it really liked it. Are you planning one last road trip before Summer ends? Then be sure to grab a copy of this book before you head out, as it contains 20! It is difficult to pick a favorite from this collection, though I will say that Bracken MacLeod's Backseat has stuck with me the hardest. In the heat of summer, you will feel the bitter cold of this winter tale!
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Other favorites include Joe R. Hugsy, Lisa Are you planning one last road trip before Summer ends? Story placement matters in an anthology, and this last one is a doozy of a story! There are plenty more good stories within this collection, the above were just the standout stories, for me. So, before you hit the road, grab this book and enjoy your travels. Like D. Alexander Ward stated in his dedication to this anthology: the roads are legion and there are such strange sights to see!
Jul 15, David rated it liked it Shelves: read-in This was a good anthology and had several very good stories. Jul 19, Noelle Kelly rated it it was amazing. Lost Highways brings the reader on a haunting and disturbed road journey into fictional horror. Best Read before embarking on a long, winding road trip. Crossroads of Opportunity The collection begins with the dark tale of a grieving husband trying to bring his wife back from the grave.
This was unexpectedly bloody and action packed. Where the Wild Winds Blow An ill wind blows along a highway tormenting the minds of everyone it passes with their deepest, darkest thoughts. A Life that is Not Mine This is a scary, confusing and claustrophobic tale. There is a sense of hopelessness and doom throughout with black, descriptive detail.
Hugsy A young boy on the run with his father has supernatural powers to call Mr. But is Mr. Hugsy the real monster? Swamp Dog This piece is raw and full of traumatic detail. Hurt and pain end in sweet release for the main character No Exit Gruesome murders of the past, murderous cults, gory imagery and a grieving sister make for a great horror story. The imagery is vivid and visceral. The Long White Line A strange, repetitive, terrifying journey with no escape. Tourists end up trapped in a nightmarish game with the locals.
Back Seat Sad, terrible and disturbing. The images from Back Seat will stay with the reader long afterwards. A tale of real horror in the world. The Heart Stops at the end of Laurel Lane Laurel Lane marks the spot of a disastrous meeting of a mother and her teenage daughter. The story ends on a twisted, hopeful note. Titan, Tyger Peter is a cheater who has a chance encounter with mysterious teenager Merry. A tale of regret and deceipt. Your Pound of Flesh Sarah picks up a hitchhiking girl and winds up on the hunt for a murderer.
Requital A story of being trapped full of rage and pain. A ghostly girl and desert creatures are described in terrifying, graphic imagery. Fake gods, loss and a pilgrimage of discovery and horror. Will he succeed and what is the blight he is desperately trying to outrun?
Motel Nine Uncomfortable and unsettling , badness lurks in Motel Nine. This one gave me shivers. An evil bargain may solve her problems… Room 4 At the Haymaker Evelyn runs into a face from the past — a hitcher who is the spitting image of the man who left her many years ago. She finds a dark release from the demons of her past. The Widow A gory, blood-soaked tale of justice, grief and madness. I absolutely loved Lost Highways and I highly recommend it to fans of surreal fiction.
Jul 20, Amy rated it it was amazing. Many themed horror anthologies trade off weak stories to have enough on topic. Lost Highways does not. The quality of each story is consistently high, making this a read from cover to cover anthology instead of something you pick up for a story or two. Although there are the expected hitchhikers and ghosts and hitchhiker ghosts , there are some genuinely novel interpretations on the idea of highway and no trite tales.
If you are a horror fan, this is well worth the read. For anyone who has ever been on a lonely stretch of highway as the evening fades into night, as you pass through familiar landscape into the unknown, this collection will hit you with the effects of a profound psychological disturbance. The anthology begins with an engrossing introduction by Brian Keene and follows with 20 stories of some of the darkest fantasies of life on the road.
Many of these stories lacked the luster of traditional horror and fell more into the realm of the depressive lonel For anyone who has ever been on a lonely stretch of highway as the evening fades into night, as you pass through familiar landscape into the unknown, this collection will hit you with the effects of a profound psychological disturbance.
Many of these stories lacked the luster of traditional horror and fell more into the realm of the depressive loneliness of facing wrong choices made or the inability to bring oneself out of the perpetual cycle of psychological oppression. Overall, a dark and deeply disturbing collection that will leave you feeling like staying home instead of traveling. Jul 05, Tim rated it really liked it.
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