Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyTricks and treats abound in this specialized collection from veteran anthologist Slung (Fever) and a pseudonymous fellow mystery editor. Ed McBain writes about a grieving widower who falls prey to thieving teenagers wearing Frankenstein masks. The old guy's plans for revenge go astray. Or do they? Cartoonist Gahan Wilson tells a slight tale about that old standby: neighborhood kids and the local ``haunted'' house. Some treats are better than others. Michael Z. Lewin is a mite too cryptic in the short form; Marcia Muller's PI Sharon McCone tracks the last moves of a jumper from the Golden Gate Bridge in a tense work that's only remotely connected to Pumpkin Night. The best loot of the lot is Peter Straub's novella, in which a tired black jazz musician, in a room with a slowly diminishing bottle, recalls a night long ago on the bad side of town, a white woman's screams and a death that did or did not occur. Straub displays extensive jazz knowledge and faultless narrative control from start to finish. Eat this one first. (Oct.)
Library JournalThese 18 haunting stories-some new, some not-range from Poe and Stoker to McBain, Muller, and Bloch and conclude with a new novella by Peter Straub.
Emily MeltonThis compelling and highly entertaining collection of 18 tales includes stories from some of the mystery/horror genre's best-known and most-respected authors--from Bram Stoker and Edgar Allan Poe to more contemporary figures such as Marcia Muller and Ed McBain. Stoker's story about a stranded tourist who narrowly escapes a horrifying adventure in Bavaria and Peter Lovesey's tale of a mysterious Gypsy curse that haunts a small English church are just two fine examples from this bountiful buffet of chilling short fiction. The title suggests that the book focuses on Halloween-related material, but the collection is diverse enough and captivating enough to be read at any time. A worthwhile addition to all mystery and horror collections.
- Grand Central Publishing
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