Unseaming

Unseaming

by Mike Allen, Laird Barron

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Overview

NOW WITH NEW BONUS CONTENT! And watch for Mike Allen's new horror collection, Aftermath of an Industrial Accident

2014 Shirley Jackson Award finalist for best collection
2014 This Is Horror Award finalist for best collection


Mike Allen has put together a first class collection of horror and dark fantasy. Unseaming burns bright as hell among its peers.
--Laird Barron, author of The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All

Allen's stories deliver solid shivering terror tinged with melancholy sorrow over the fragility of humankind.
--Publishers Weekly, starred review

Everyone in the world awakens covered in blood-and no one knows where the blood came from. A childhood doll arrives to tear its owner's reality limb from limb. A portal to the spirit realm stretches wide on the Appalachian Trail, and something more than human crawls through on eight legs. Words of comfort change to terrifying sounds as a force from outside time speaks through them. The buttons in the bin will unseam your flesh to bare your nastiest secrets.

Opening with "The Button Bin," a finalist for the Nebula Award for Best Short Story, and culminating with its sequel, "The Quiltmaker," which Bram Stoker Award and Shirley Jackson Award winner Laird Barron has hailed as Mike Allen's masterpiece, this debut collection gathers fourteen horror tales that, in the words of Barron's introduction, "rival anything committed to paper by the likes of contemporary masters such as Clive Barker, Ramsey Campbell, or Caitlín Kiernan. This is raw, visceral, and sometimes bloody stuff. Primal stuff."

More praise for Unseaming:

Throughout Unseaming, reality is usually in bad shape right from the start-and from there things proceed to go downhill. Such is the general background and trajectory of life in Mike Allen's fictional world. More could be said, of course, but there's one thing that I feel especially urged to say: these stories are fun. Not "good" fun, and certainly not "good clean" fun. They are too unnerving for those modifiers, too serious, like laughter in the dark-unnerving, serious laughter that leads you through Mr. Allen's funhouse. The reality in there is also in bad shape, deliberately so, just for the seriously unnerving fun of it. The prose is poetic, except it's nonsense poetry, the poetry of deteriorating realities, intermingling realities, realities without Reality. And all the while that unnerving, serious laughter keeps getting louder and louder. Are we having fun yet?
--Thomas Ligotti, author of Teatro Grottesco and The Spectral Link

Mike Allen's ability as a poet is evident throughout this fever dream of a book. Brutal, elegant, and shocking, the stories in Unseaming are snapshots of a beautiful Hell.
--Nathan Ballingrud, author of North American Lake Monsters: Stories

Mike Allen's Unseaming confirms his status as a poet who writes in dread and awe rather than ink. His most recurrent themes are those of wrenching loss and transformative retribution, with a liberal helping of the literal fear of God(s); sowing out a hundred different apocalypses, personal and otherwise, these stories reap an unforgettable crop of nightmares, sketching a chimeric universe in which shape-changing is less a rumour or an option than a sad, simple inevitability. Not to be missed.
--Gemma Files, author of We Will All Go Down Together

Mike Allen blends a poet's attention to language with a crime reporter's instinct for the darker precincts of human behavior. Lush, phantasmagorical, his stories match the monsters outside with the monsters inside, B-movie tropes opening into psychological and spiritual desolation. These stories glow with demonic energy, and what they illuminate are the faces of our secret selves, screaming back at us from the mirror's depths.
--John Langan, author of The Wide, Carnivorous Sky and Other Monstrous Geographies

Product Details

BN ID: 2940150491625
Publisher: Mythic Delirium Books
Publication date: 10/03/2014
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 58,756
File size: 761 KB

About the Author

Nebula, Shirley Jackson and two-time World Fantasy award finalist Mike Allen wears many hats. As editor and publisher of the Mythic Delirium Books imprint, he helmed MYTHIC DELIRIUM magazine and the five volumes in the CLOCKWORK PHOENIX anthology series. His own short stories have been gathered in three collections: UNSEAMING, THE SPIDER TAPESTRIES and AFTERMATH OF AN INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENT. He's won the Rhysling Award for poetry three times, and his most recent collection of verse, HUNGRY CONSTELLATIONS, was a Suzette Haden Elgin Award nominee. A dark fantasy novel, THE BLACK FIRE CONCERTO, appeared in 2013.

More of Mike's stories have popped up in places like BENEATH CEASELESS SKIES, LACKINGTON'S, SPECTRAL REALMS and the anthologies BEST HORROR OF THE YEAR ONE, CTHULHU'S REIGN, SOLARIS RISING 2, TOMORROW'S CTHULHU, PLUTO IN FURS, PHANTASM/CHIMERA, NOWHEREVILLE, TRANSMISSIONS FROM PUNKTOWN and A SINISTER QUARTET.

For more than a decade he's worked as the arts and culture columnist for the daily newspaper in Roanoke, Va., where he and his wife Anita live with a cat so full of trouble she's named Pandora. You can follow Mike's exploits as a writer at descentintolight.com, as an editor at mythicdelirium.com, and all at once on Twitter at @mythicdelirium. You can contact Mike at mythicdelirium[at]gmail[dot]com.

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