Alex Boast ghost story writer

Best 2015 Ghost Stories

Let’s put the theory that modern ghost stories can’t be done to bed, shall we? There’s been resurgence to this beautiful art form, and whilst this humble writer is doing his best to contribute, other authors are finding wild success with their efforts; a few of which I want to mention below.

Whilst there are horror writers such as Laird Barron and Livia Llewelyn to be praised, I shall stick to ghost stories for now, and update this post over time.

New Release: Verona by Benedict Ashforth:

verona benedict ashforth ghost story kindle select short story

Wow, the latest release by Benedict is an excellent follow up to his other longer pieces.

I can say little without spoiling anything, but i’d recommend both reading the story and leaving a review – you can see mine on it’s page.

Certainly, he has gone for the jugular with regards to the fear factor this time, and it was a pleasure to read.

I will think twice, though, about my choice of hotel when I inevitably visit.

A strong contender for “Ghost Story of the Year”.

New Release: Tympanum by Shane Stadler:

tympanum exoskeleton 2 two shane stadler horror novel ghost storyVery excited to be reading this!

Review coming soon.

 

Darkest Past by Benedict Ashforth

benedict ashforth darkest past ghost story collection

Any reader of the site will know that I am a big fan of Mr Ashforth, and am eagerly anticipating ‘Verona’ , but it is his earlier work – the short stories – that will receive attention today.

Re-published in one collection, ‘Darkest Past’ is a five story anthology that explores typical ghost story convention, whilst defying it at the same time.

The Amazon description is incredibly vague, but you can expect familiar Ashforth-ian themes, like the ghostliness of family, throughout.

The Secret People by Stephanie Boddy

stephanie boddy ghost story

From the same haunted mind that brought us the widely-renowned ‘House on Poultney Road’, Stephanie Boddy’s novelette ‘The Secret People’ is an excellent example of an atmospheric ghost story that raises the tension with perfect pacing, culminating in a conclusion that is difficult to second-guess.

This short ghost story doesn’t need much blood or guts to tell a tale of terror, and the writing should be commended.

 

The Fireside Stories by HH BenningFireside Stories HH Benning Ghost Stories

The title might suggest that these ghost stories are just for Christmas, but they can easily be digested in a single evening.

These stories seem to have suffered some bizarre formatting in the transfer to Kindle, resulting in multiple ellipses that can be a bit jarring, but the stories themselves are well told and well written.

They aren’t much scary, but will certainly entertain someone with slightly antiquated tastes such as myself. There’s no horror here, just a good old fashioned work of speculative fiction.

There are several other works by this writer on Amazon, which I will be taking a look at and will update this post accordingly.

 

The Men in the Snow; A Ghost Story collection by Alex Boast

the men in the snow alex boast ghost story

Proud recipient of seven 5 star reviews and over 100 copies sold in the first month (I’m proud of every single one of those copies) ‘The Men in the Snow’ has done what I hoped it might; tie the past and future together in a haunting rendition of the human existence.

Indeed, each story is related through their unreliable narrators (highlight that text to reveal minor spoiler) and really what this collection tries – and hopefully succeeded – to do is hold a mirror up to the reader and make them wonder if they can believe the voice they are hearing in their heads.

Of course, interpretation is everything, and a good piece of speculative fiction should have an ambiguous outcome in which there are several possible conclusions.

In each of these stories, we should be asking, who is the ghost?

I’ve continued to be questioned about this, and everyone has their own interpretation of what happened. Which is brilliant. The real question seems to be, were the characters ever really seeing (or being?) ghosts?

To paraphrase Mark Twain, we were all dead for years before we were alive, so isn’t there a bit of ghost in all of us?

Second collection: The Cracks in the Statue; A Ghost Story collection by Alex Boast

Alex Boast ghost story writer

(Exclusive cover preview)

Now Available with five 5 star reviews on Amazon

The second anthology will continue the theme of the first – that we’re all a little bit dead inside – but brings it up to date. Archaic ghost stories that fit the convention may feature, but in this, expect to feel the rage of the ‘Tin Can Man’ from the previous anthology, as he comes to claim us.

Titles include:

  • The Cracks in the Statue  – a Classics student takes an eventful trip to the museum and uses social media to find the answers we’ve all been looking for.
  • The Declaration of Sin-Dependance – a ghost story about the cyclical nature of life, and what happens when you drink and drive.
  • The Bird Feeders – a traditional ghost story about a house in the country where the elephant in the room is in the garden.
  • The Man Behind You – A flash fiction about the result of a joyride.

 

Exoskeleton by Shane Stadler:

Exo Shane Stadler Ghost Story

I blistered through this in one Saturday afternoon. It was absolutely impossible to put down.

It’s a clever story well told.

The writing is mediocre, but as this is a debut we can let Mr Stadler off. However, the story itself, is so immensely disturbing that i have to recommend it completely to anyone interested in ghost stories.

Like myself, Mr Stadler has tried – and perhaps succeeded – to update the genre for modern readers.

Absolutely perfect for the Kindle generation, and i’m looking forward to the sequel, Tympanum.

 

 

 

Pscyhomanteum by Joseph Iorillopsychomanteum joseph iorillo ghost story

Mr Iorillo handled the “difficult third offering” with style and grace.

It stacks up very well with ‘The House is Empty Now’ and ‘Goodnight Blackbird’ because it’s different.

This ghost story has an unconventional twist, and frees itself from the shackles of tradition, resulting in a very compelling and psychological thriller.

Whilst is isn’t particularly frightening, it’s a bloody good read.

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