|Cover: Luke Spooner|
Parallel Universe Publications has published Their Cramped Dark World and Other Tales.
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The stories included in this collection are:
Hoody (first published in When Graveyards Yawn, Crowswing Books, 2006)
A Bottle of Spirits (first published in New Writings in Horror & the Supernatural 2, 1972)
No Sense in Being Hungry, She Thought (first published in Peeping Tom #20, 1996)
Now and Forever More (first published in The Second Black Book of Horror, 2008)
Romero's Children (first published in The Seventh Black Book of Horror, 2010)
Swan Song (first published in the Ninth Black Book of Horror, 2012)
The Farmhouse (first published in New Writings in Horror & the Supernatural 1, 1971)
The Last Coach Trip (first published in The Eighth Black Book of Horror, 2011)
The Satyr's Head (first published in The Satyr's Head & Other Tales of Terror, 1975)
Their Cramped Dark World (first published in The Sixth Black Book of Horror, 2010)
British Fantasy Society Review.
Reviewed by Matthew Johns
This is David A. Riley’s third compilation of horrifying tales, consisting of short stories published between 1971 and 2012. Riley’s style of writing is easy to absorb – his tales of terror are all gripping and slip down a treat.
If you’re a fan of a happy ending, then avoid Riley’s books – few, if any have the protagonist walking away unscathed. This collection sees, amongst other things, a rapist eaten by aliens, a ghostly “hoody” committing murders from beyond the grave, a couple holidaying in a demonic Cornish village (note, non-demonic Cornish villages are available), survivors of a zombie apocalypse thinking that a zombie they’ve found is gaining both consciousness and a conscience, a hiker finds a mysterious farmhouse previously inhabited by an artist known to have dabbled in strange rituals, and in the titular tale, a pair of teenage boys try to spend the night in a haunted house, but one of them is not what he appears…
Riley’s work will appeal to all fans of horror – it feels like “classic horror”, with tales of witchcraft, demons and zombies. All complete page turners, Riley is one to read and return to, again and again.