Pull up a rocking chair and sit a spell Soak in these tales of Southern Gothic horror Sinister shopkeepers whose goods hold the highest price, a woman s search for her mother drags her into the binding embrace of a monster, a witchdoctor s young niece tells him a life altering secret, an investigator who knows how to keep a 100% confession rate These are stories wherePull up a rocking chair and sit a spell Soak in these tales of Southern Gothic horror Sinister shopkeepers whose goods hold the highest price, a woman s search for her mother drags her into the binding embrace of a monster, a witchdoctor s young niece tells him a life altering secret, an investigator who knows how to keep a 100% confession rate These are stories where the setting itself becomes a character fog laced cemeteries, sulfur rich salt marshes places housing creatures that defy understanding and where the grotesque and macabre are celebrated The stories are rich in flavor and clever in metaphor, the horrors completely surreal or far unnerving all too possible She brings a refreshing perspective to the table that paranormal lovers are sure to enjoy B.D Bruns, author of The Gothic Shift You can feel the warm thick air, the rich history and legends, the desperation of the impoverished, and the deep horror of the betrayed Roma Gray, author of Gray Shadows Under a Harvest Moon
Spook Lights Southern Gothic Horror Pull up a rocking chair and sit a spell Soak in these tales of Southern Gothic horror Sinister shopkeepers whose goods hold the highest price a woman s search for her mother drags her into the bindin
Spook Lights by Eden Royce is a collection of 12 Southern Gothic horror stories, now these aren't cringe inducing, gore infested ball breaking horror. More a slow burning quiet horror that creeps up on you and instead of burying an axe in the back of your head, gently breaths on the back of your neck while you absorb each story. Waiting for the realization that somethings amiss, bringing feelings of unease and softly tweaking your emotions. Like any collection of so many short stories, there's [...]
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review as a prize in a book contest I entered at the author's book launch party this month.Spook Lights Southern Gothic Horror explores the Supernatural and beyond in the south inspired by the author's hometown of Charleston with stories from Hags who suck the life out of men to an Indian warrior's journey to become chief of her tribe, Sea Sirens, and more. If you'd like to know what type of stories are in this collection, read it for [...]
Many novels, I find, are over-written and padded. That's one reason I prefer short stories. That way, when the author has written everything she needs to write, she stops. Or more correctly, she moves on to the next story.Also, I've always felt that the premiere venue for horror is the short story. In a well-written short story, every word is engineered to bring the reader to a horrific revelation. In a novel, the extra space to expand upon details often gives us a lot of expanded details.“Spo [...]
There are 12 short stories in all, but my three favorites were "Doc Buzzard's Coffin," "Hag Ride," and "The Choking Kind." Royce's melodic writing is full of texture, atmosphere, and characters that invoke the South. I felt the swelter and stale, human sweat rise through each word. Descriptive language meets Black folklore to create a leisurely atmosphere. Think ghost stories told around the campfire. Think of the fairytales your grandmother read to you when you were a child. Reading Spook Light [...]
Eden Royce asked me to review her latest book, and I'm happy she did! I'm not a huge horror fan, but the subtitle got me excited.Spook Lights is a de-light (see what I just did there? Yeah, I'm sooo clever). I don't like slashing, bodies piling up, gory horror. These short stories have the kind of scary that is soft, like a clammy swamp mist slowly covering you from head to toe. A kind of sneak up on you and place an icy hand on your neck scary. My two faves are Doc Buzzard's Coffin and The Chok [...]
The stories are, on the whole, centred around female characters and their lust for revenge. There is such power within these pages that it leaves you breathless at times. The anger and rage are suffocating. These are women, spirits and hags to fear and Royce, through them, shows you the very worst of humanity – jealousy, betrayal and a hunger for vengeance. Yet, however dark the stories and characters might get, Royce's beautiful voice lifts you from their embrace and lets you transcend their [...]
I contacted the author personally and asked her if I could have her books for review. She graciously accepted, so here we are.It felt very good to go back to horror. I absolutely loved the stories. I’ve never read such unique horror stories, maybe because I don’t know much of the southern culture, and everything was new to me. This type of horror is not a “Oh my God, someone is following me!”, but it is an ongoing chilling experience. The way voodoo was described here was much more reali [...]
***Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for a review.***I have to agree with the review/blurb above- the stories here are wonderfully atmospheric. A central theme running through them is the climes and cultures of the Deep South rooted in the African diaspora- gullah, geechi, obeah, even Native American, West African and Haitian. Like all short story collections some will stay with you and some you'll breeze through. The Choking Kind is my favorite- a tale of love gone wrong where a wo [...]
Smooth and Smoldering ThrillersThis book is a collection of Southern Gothic short stories, a specific and rare type of horror fiction. What is the difference, you may ask? If a horror story is a man in a mask, chasing a woman through a dark forest with a bloody axe, these stories are the warm embrace of a long lost lover as he slowly drags her down into his grave. A true gothic is dripping with atmosphere, history, and depth. It sneaks up on you when you feel warm and safe, then touches your emo [...]
Horror is one of my favorite genres and yet within the usual fare, only a spattering of ethnic treasures are to be found. Rare gems such as 'Spook Lights,' flavored with the heat, the mysticism, the language and feel of the South are a joy to read. Ms. Royce peppers her narratives with spirits, hags, demons and supernatural creatures that are wondrous to behold and yet frightening at the same time. Within this unique collection of stories are themes of vengeance, of hope and of despair, yet all [...]
Short ReviewDo I recommend it: Yes!Diversity: 5Characters: 5Story: 5My Favorite Stories"9 Mystery Rose"- This one ended so cleverly that I had to go back and reread the beginning. Clever. Topic: Graveyards, ghouls, and no good spouses."Hand of Glory"- The title says it all."Hag Ride" - Again, the beauty is in the title."Homegoing" - Any woman with a child will love and hate this story. It explores the question: How will you handle your child if he turned bad?"Since Hatchet was a Hammer" - Great [...]
I love the way Eden Royce writes horror. Forget horror, I love her writing style. This is my first time reading this author, and she didn't disappoint. "Spook Lights" is a collection of short stories and they are all unique and wonderfully told. They are steeped in culture--language, location, and characters--not often written about in books. Several of the short stories could've easily been written as a novella or even a full-length novel. If she ever decides to expand a few of the short storie [...]
Scary stories set in the SouthIf you like your scares subtle and to sneak up on you, this is the book for you. This book made me writhe with anticipation at the scares to come especially since it was always inflicted on the perfect victim who I myself would have loved to strangle. The writing was reminiscent of J.California Cooper if she had written in the horror genre. So glad I picked this up.
Addictively Dark!Royce has a great knack for writing horror stories, and to put them all in one collective book is just genius. This collection brings the magnificence of dark magical paranormal into the delicacy of horror. Horror needs to be written in a way that is not hokey or just for the sake of gore, and Royce has done an exemplary job with this book. It's had to pick one story in this collection as my favorite, but once I read "The Choking Kind", I was able to decide, at least for right n [...]
Unique, thrilling, deep and dark! Having never been exposed to the dark magic facet of Creole/Southern/Haitian, etc. culture, it was interesting how gory and horrific these stories could be without featuring distasteful gore or horror at all. The tales carry the themes of bargaining (and being careful what you wish for), the undead (and very active), human error, and connecting with the spiritual realm for intervention, all with the flare and fancy of the South!
A good mix of eerie, macabre and visceral horror. The stories are very character-driven and dripping with revenge. There is a rich mythology at this anthology's core and a great sense of time, place and culture. The horror is always just around the corner leaving the reader with a deep sense of foreboding, knowing that something horrible is about to happen. Recommended!
Some of these stories were engrossing. Others seemed to lack something. "Since Hatchet was a Hammer" was the most immature. It did not even seem like it was written by the same author. "Path of the War Chief" was the most confusing. I completely skipped Devil's Playground and Rhythm - they did not draw me in at all.
The first thing you notice in Eden Royce’s short story collection, Spook Lights: Southern Gothic Horror, is the exquisite attention to language and setting. Royce’s storytelling is layered and dense. Spook Lights is billed as dark fiction. The sense of horror, dis-ease and dread are developed in an entertaining and unexpected way in each story. This collection is a great introduction to Southern gothic horror and is well worth your time.Themes that recur in the stories include: betrayal, the [...]
I really enjoyed this collection, which contains stories that range from creepy to downright chilling. Most take place in the South, offering a sense of dark mystery especially haunting for those like me who've never personally visited the region. Overall, the stories show sides of both magic and humanity that are as disturbing as they are intriguing."The Watered Soul" 5 starsA man seeks out the woman who cursed him with immortality and has left him a tortured soul. Dark and immersive, this stor [...]
It's very rare for me to devour a short story collection by a single author. Anthologies are hit or miss for me with some stories being my favourites but others not interesting me at all and in a way, collections are like that but there's more of a risk factor because a reader has to be quite invested in a particular author in order to have the best reading experience when it comes to single-author collections. I'd heard of Eden Royce before a friend reviewed her collection, but I'm glad that ca [...]
Review originally posted on The Bibliophile Chronicles.This is one of those books that I absolutely flew through. It’s gripping, dark and incredibly addictive. The book is made up of a number of different short stories, all with the vein of Gothic horror running through them. There are lots of different ones and each one holds an interesting sinister take on the Gothic genre.Short stories isn't something that I read often, but it was nice to be able to read a full story in one chapter, go away [...]
2.5 starsThe Watered Soul 2Doc Buzzard's Coffin 29 Mystery Rose 3Hand of Glory 3Hag Ride 2Homegoing 4With the Turn of a Key 3Devil's Playground 3Path of the War Chief 2Since Hatchet was a Hammer 4Rhythm 2The Chocking Kind 3
I loved Eden Royce's collection of short stories. Her prolific writing style held me captive from the first page. Each story reminded me of the old Twilight Zone series flavored with people of color and that book cover really does not disappoint. This is a memorable conjuring of back-home hush hush magic that is quite simply terrifying and truly spooky. You know, those old-school obeah or voodoo tales which disrupted your sleep so much the lights stayed on all night long - yeah that kinda scary. [...]
My overall thoughts about Spook Lights is that this is an amazing collection of stories! I appreciate the subtle style of gothic horror and that it’s not all about jump scares and intense gore. Instead of things jumping out at you from beyond the pages it’s the suspense that slowly creeps up on you.I loved how Royce immerses her reader in the deep South, and the sharp attention to detail helps to place you in each of the story’s landscapes. A lot of the stories are blend of fantasy, the su [...]
Containing twelve "tales of terror" Spook Lights is a different type of horror. You won't find stories laden with gore here, oh no. These are stories that make you think. You'll see each scenario so clearly. Royce has a way with words. Her writing drips emotion and will drag you into each story different as they are. And each will leave you with a chill. Something to ponder long after you've finished reading.I do feel I have to pick a couple of stories for shout out. The Watered SoulFrom the ver [...]
(Disclosure: I received an electronic copy from the author for review purposes.)With such a specific theme, author Eden Royce has set herself a lofty challenge – to compile a collection that is both cohesive and varied in its content. And for the most part, she has succeeded admirably. The stories in Spook Lights are rich in atmosphere, showcasing the setting to great effect. There are some recurring motifs – love, lust and betrayal, revenge and dark magic – but there are also some surpris [...]
Horror is a genre I don't normally seek as it can be filled with senseless gory acts, but there is nothing senseless about Eden Royce's collection of southern gothic short stories. This is my type of horror. A bit literary, and the shocking bits sneak up on the reader with a slow and delightful burn. I am more likely to read this genre now given the focus on setting and atmosphere. The author captures her native South Carolina well. Royce also handles literary elements deftly. Her work is a plea [...]
Sit on the porch swing with some sweet tea and enjoy these vivid, frightening stories of revenge, family, root magic and identity. The lush setting draws you in and plot twists surprise you. Like the characters, you feel at once in peril and "nestled in the marsh's protective embrace." "Doc Buzzard's Coffin" and "The Choking Kind" stand out as particularly well-wrought tales.
Not only do we get to a bunch of intense horror stories but we also get to learn about different culture and practices of the south. Love stories with a horrible twist sometimes with a happily ever after for the antagonist. Can't wait for book two.
I liked it most of it I will definitely be checking out longer works by this writer. Related blog post: bookedupandbossy/