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Season of the Macabre combines three of Damien's other short story collections (Cold Comfort Child, A Polite Exchange, and The Rare Gift), into ...
Season of the Macabre combines three of Damien's other short story collections (Cold Comfort Child, A Polite Exchange, and The Rare Gift), into one master volume.
Posted July 27, 2012
Season of the macabre was an ok story to read. It was a collection of psychological thrillers. Not what I was expecting for “psychological thrillers.” So much so that I had to define what macabre was to understand it a little more. In the beginning I did not get the idea of the thrillers. These stories were seriously “psychological” at some point I think it was more Sci-fi thrillers.
The most interesting part was the way death happened. Sometimes it was so unimaginable that I did not realize it even happened. I was left in the end like, “did this really happen” it had to happen given the situation the person was in.
There wasn’t so much energy created that I couldn’t put the book down. At some points, I wanted to put it down but being that he explained the peculiar ways of death I was intrigued by it. At sometimes I had to sit and think about what happened if anything happened.
All in all it was a decent collection of stories and although some of them were only a page long (which I didn’t like because I felt some things were left out) but I had fun reading some of these stories.
Posted June 19, 2012
Season of the Macabre is a compilation of three previous volumes of short stories by the author, Cold Comfort Child, A Polite Exchange, and The Rare Gift. I am a sucker for good macabre fiction, and this book delivered that. All of the stories had a holiday theme, but definitely not of the "fluffy, happy bunny" variety! One part horror, one part creepy, and one part disturbing made for a fantastic set of short stories. I don't know that I could even pick one as my favorite because they were all equally creepily, wonderfully, disturbingly great stories. What I liked is that the author stepped to the left of center with some of these stories. They had twists and turns that took the story places that isn't usual, which made them even more exciting to read. I also really enjoyed his matter-of-fact style that created some characters that were completely unapologetic for their actions. That just added to the "creepy and disturbing" factor1 Fantastic read!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 4, 2012
I think I might like short stories now. These fourteen stories left me confused, shocked, intrigued, and wondering. I love how this book is a collection of stories because I don’t think I would have picked just one of them up on its own. And I don’t think they would have worked as well if they weren't together.
My favorite stories were "Yule", "Cold Comfort Child", and "And What Will the Robin Do Then, Poor Thing?" "Yule" was just weird but the kind of weird that keeps you reading because you want to know where it's headed. I wanted to know how the story would end and what had made Martin snap like that. And how in the world would a giant wolf named Yule play a part in the story.
"Cold Comfort Child" was creepy but also intriguing. I didn’t know what would happen during Anthony and Santa's exchange. And the ending, wow. I'm still sitting here trying to figure it out. I have an idea but the story just gives you a sampling and leaves your imagination to do the rest.
I loved "And What Would the Robin Do…" It was intriguing because I wanted to know how and why a robin would scratch on a window in distinct patterns. What was the purpose? When I finally found out I was really happy. Even though there was the overtone of creepiness to the story, I guess I was like Pete, in that I didn't really think there was something bad about the robin.
The only reason I'm giving this a 3 instead of a higher number is that I do wish some of the stories were a little longer. Some of them were so short that I felt like I had just started them when they were over. It didn't give me enough time to get invested in the characters. With that said, I still am going to go see what else I can read from this author.
**I received this book from The Bookplex**
Posted May 22, 2012
Season of the Macabre is a very unusual book( in a good way :) because its author Damien Kelly is not your ordinary backyard writer, Damien is a lecturer in psychology who is interested in speculative fiction with particular taste for macabre (like I said, not ordinary) He also won award for his Sci-fi story “Intervention Paradox” in Octocon short story competition of 2011. ‘Season of the Macabre’ combines three of Damien’s short story collections (Cold Comfort Child, A Polite Exchange, and The Rate Gift) into one master volume.
Season of the Macabre is a collection of 14 short stories, namely:
Cold Comfort Child
A Polite Exchange
Day of Rest
Kissing Mary Jane
The Rare Gift
And What Will the Robin Do Then, Poor Thing?
What Hearts Can Bear
Merry Mr. Kent
Each of these stories have very different plot line and execution, only thing that links all these stories is the word “Season”, because these stories are themed on Holiday season, for instance “Cold Comfort Child” story is about a child who wants a gun, from Santa as a Christmas present. While there are other stories like “Mine Alone” which is a sci-fi short story about, bond between mother and ‘her’ child, and ”The Rare Gift” which is about winning against odds..
Like any collection of Short stories, there were some good ones and some... well not so good ones, but overall I like the book. Some stories were too short for my liking like ‘Kissing Mary Jane’ (hardly a page long). Character development is the most challenging job in short-story writing, but David handled this like its nothing.
On concluding notes I can say that ‘Season of the Macabre’ is a nice and quick read. There are stories which will make you(reader) craving to know more like the ‘Cold Comfort Child’, but there are others like ‘Unexpected’ (this one I read for 4 times but simply couldn’t get where author was going with the story) which are exceptions. So all in all, a good book and surely 3 of 5 stars contender.
Posted May 13, 2012
All in all, I think that Damien Kelly’s work makes Stephen King’s work look like books of nursery rhymes. Season of the Macabre is an anthology of holiday stories by Damien Kelly that will put you in the ho-ho-horrifying holiday spirit. The stories are all beautifully written and I really enjoyed Kelly’s deft touch with dialogue. These are seriously dark short stories that made me worry that the writer may be one of those people who gets so depressed by the holiday season that suicide becomes an option. Fortunately, Kelly writes out his holiday depression and lives to write another day.
My feeling is that Kelly has a tremendous insight into the psychological dark side of human beings. His stories drew me in and just as I thought I had an inkling of where the story was going, the story would come to an very abrupt end, tantamount to the guillotine blade falling. Several times I went back and read a story again to see what I had missed so that I could pick my jaw up off of the floor.
My favorite story was Merry Mr. Kent, a Christmas story set in prison and a close second was Thankless, a story about a little boy who has become very good friends with the turkey that he knows will be their Thanksgiving dinner. There is a thin line between love and hate, and for me, Kelly walks that line in every story in a compelling way.
Posted May 3, 2012
Seasons of the Macabre, by Damien Kelly, is a collecton of short stories that share common themes. Each story has a thriller/horror theme to it and each occur durning the holiday months. I found that once I picked it up and started reading it, I had a hard time putting it down. I really enjoyed the thriller/horror twist to the average holiday themed story. The only thing that I didn't care to much for, is that some of the endings were really far fetched, while others lacked a good closing. That being said, it didn't really take away from the story itself.
I would have to say that my favorite of the stories was "Winter Barley." This story follows a little girl who has done something wrong. Throughout the story she is trying to hide to keep from getting in trouble. I don't want to give away too much about the story but, as in all of the stories within the book, there is a twist. I look forward to reading more by this author. I felt that he did a good job at keeping me guessing up until the very end. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick and easly thriller or horror story!
Posted April 30, 2012
Season of the Macabre by Damien Kelly is a collection of short stories related to holiday themes. I've seen this collection described as horror, but the book isn't as scary as the title will lead you to believe, although most of the stories are very weird or creepy. The first story has a young boy negotiating with Santa for an actual handgun, to protect his family. It just gets weirder from there.
I think my favorite part of Kelly's writing is that he plays with your expectations a bit and delivers some kind of twist by the end of the story. I found that once I started reading, I had to keep going for several stories. Luckily most of them are rather short, or this engrossing quality might be a problem! It's easy to read the entire thing in an afternoon. Overall I found this to be an intriguing collection of weird short stories that puts a spin on the usual stories of holiday cheer.
Posted April 27, 2012
Season of the Macabre is a collection of fourteen psychologically suspenseful short stories. The setting for each story is during the cold season and sometimes the theme is Christmas holiday, which adds to the darkness of the stories. The stories “A Polite Exchange”, ”Day of Rest”, and “Unexpected” were stories with a sardonic twist of fate. “A Polite Exchange” was my favorite of the stories. Very clever!
I enjoy reading suspenseful stories with a challenging psychological twist.
What I do NOT enjoy is a story with overtones of abuse towards children. I did not like the stories which alluded to the neglect, injury, worry, fright, and/or harm of a child. I am very glad the author instructs his children not to read the rest of the book, after his opening acknowledgements.
I felt disturbed at the conclusion of reading all of the stories in the book. It is not a book I would recommend to friends. Some of the stories contain language which might be offensive to readers.
Posted October 12, 2012
No text was provided for this review.