(rating - 2.5) (8 pgs.) Lazarus by John Connolly wasn't bad but it was stranger than anything I've ever come across and I didn't like the religious aspect to it.
(rating - 4) (33 pgs.) What Maisie Knew by David Liss was awesome and I'm hoping this is pulled from a whole book so I can read more.
(rating - 1) (35 pgs.) Copper by Stephen R. Bissette sucked. I read two or three pages and skipped the entire story. I felt like a 8 year old wrote the sentences. I'll include a paragraph or two later.
(rating - 3) (25 pgs.) In The Dust by Tim Lebbon was good - it took me just a little while to get into it and I think it runs along the lines of the run of the mill zombie stories but it was good. I'd read a full length story here too.
(rating - 3.5) (16 pgs.) Life Sentence by Kelley Armstrong was another good one. I'd read the full story if there was one. I liked the twist at the end the most. The beginning was hard for me to swallow. I suppose it doesn't make much sense but I like stories like this to be as realistic as possible. By that I mean I want to be able to imagine it really happening and some books/stories nail that down better than others. I like all of my fiction in this way which is why I'm not a big fantasy/sci-fi reader.
(rating - 4) (10 pgs.) Delice by Holly Newstein - I wish this would have been longer. This was one of the better ones for me and another where I'd read a full length novel. The premise here is simple but still captivating. Who would have thought sympathy could be had for zombies?
(rating - 4) (3.5 pgs.) The Wind Cries Mary by Brian Keene is 3 and a half pages long. Can that even be called a short story? Why couldn't it have been longer? It was good - good enough that again I'd read a full length book. I almost rated it lower because I was pissed at the lack of length but then it occured to me that I wouldn't really be rating it on the story alone and that's what I want to do here.
(rating - 4.5) (56 pgs.) Family Business by Jonathon Maberry - qiuite possibly the best in the whole book. I'm hoping there are more books by Maberry out there, if Family Business was taken from one I'll only be happier.
(rating - 3.5) (22 pgs.) The Zombie Who Fell From the Sky - M.B. Homler is different... I'm not sure what else to say... I'd read the book. (If anyone's noticed that's one of the ways I decide if I liked the story or not.) I wouldn't have thought it possible really and that's probably because I'm not well read in the genre but this had humorous parts to it. I actually chuckled out loud a few times. Before this book I'd have cringed if someone told me to read a "funny" zombie book/story because I wouldn't have been able to imagine how it could be done. But it's possible.
(rating - 4) (16 pgs.) My Dolly by Derek Nikitas - Besides wishing this would have been a little more thorough I liked it. I'd have liked to have known a little more about Dolly inparticular personally. But it's a good story and again I'd read the book. :)
(rating - 4) (21 pgs.) Second Wind by Mike Carey was another good one. I'm still a little surprised I wasn't bogged down by the stock details actually but it never happened. The way it was incorporated into the story meshed well.
(6 pgs.) Closure, Limited by Max Brooks - I was actually a little scared to start this. For someone new to the genre this mans name leaves high expectations. If I had to pick one name I've heard over and over in accordance with zombie-lit it's Max Brooks. The fact that the story is only 6 pages long didn't help because I figured there was no way to hook me in that small amount of time. (It could be thought that someone who reads as much as I do wouldn't think like this...) I liked the different way it was written first of all. With narrators words italicized and the speaking characters words in a regular font. It left some questions for me but not in a bad way. In a way that, yes, hooked me. I had already planned to read some of Brooks' books so this didn't convince me but again I'm hoping to find a longer story. **Note: under the title of the short story is "A Story of World War Z". Does anyone know if this is taken from that book? Or if maybe this was bonus material or some such? I'd like to be directed to where I can read more if anyone can help.
(rating - 2) (5 pgs.) Among Us by Aimee Bender sucked. For the most part. The only short story within the short story that I liked was the last one and I liked it enough to up the rating a star. I also liked it enough that I may read something else by the author - I'd take care when deciding that though. The other paragraphs (they really can't be called stories IMO) were horrible.
(rating - 4) (17 pgs.) Ghost Trap by Rick Hautala was another different one for me. I was sure what to expect and the writing really comes through - you actually feel your pulse become faster and feel afraid.
(rating - 4) (16 pgs.) The Storm Door by Tad Williams was pretty good. I wasn't sure I'd like it so much at the beginning and luckily it was long enough to win me over because my the middle I was into it. The ending was pretty damn good too.
(rating - 4.5) (16 pgs.) Kids and Their Toys by James A. Moore was one of the better ones in the anthology. Another author I'm hoping to see more of and one where I'll be most happy if I find a book this was pulled from. My only complaint is that, for the length of the story, there were a few too many characters. I had trouble keeping them straight and two or three, at least, could have been gone and not missed. I had to go back to beginning to see which one it was at the end. I won't say more than that - anyone who has read it will know who I mean.
(rating - ?) (13 pgs.) Shooting Pool by Joe R. Lansdale was..... I think I missed something here. Was there a zombie in this story? Did I miss something in between the lines? I don't know how to rate this. The story was good. But this is a zombie book. And there were no zombies in the story. I have no idea what to make of this one.
(rating - 4) (23 pgs.) Weaponized by David Wellington is another good one. I would have liked the ending to be a little different. I don't know, maybe a little less patsy. But it's good and I'd read more for sure. Very interesting premise.
(rating - 2) (28 pgs.) Twittering From the Circus of the Dead by Joe Hill - what to say about this. I don't get the whole "Twitter" thing personally, FaceBook is sufficient for my needs, but that isn't something that made any difference here. The beginning and middle were good, the ending not so much. In the middle the fear ran right through me because as unrealistic as it is, with so much social networking these days, one can imagine - key word 'imagine' - something similiar happening - one asking for, pleading for, help on-line. I'd put my money on that there are people out there with little enough brains that would keep "tweeting" and not call someone for help so hey, maybe it's not all that unrealistic after all. I can tell the author is talented even though I didn't care much for the story though and I will check for other works. A different ending would have made a great difference for me.