Many may be used to witnessing horror stories unfold on the big screen, but if they were to look towards books, and this one in particular, there wouldn’t be much disappointment to be had. 

Dark stars is out now! / Picture Credit: Titan Books

Dark stars is out now! / Picture Credit: Titan Books

The synopsis 

Dark Stars is a brilliant collection of horror stories from Titan Books, from vampires and witches, to grieving parents and confused teens. 

While an overall synopsis cannot be given, it must be said that the book has an overall feel, which is very impressive to say every story was written by a different author. 

Dark Stars contains stories by Caroline Kepnes, Ramsey Campbell, Priya Sharma, Livia Llewellyn, Graham Jones, Chesya Burke, Alma Katsu, John F.D Taff, Gemma Files, Josh Malerman, and Usman T. Malik. 

So, what did I think? 

When offered a proof copy of Dark Stars, I couldn’t say ‘yes’ fast enough. I love horror, but have never read a book like this before, and I can say with certainty that it did not fall short of its promise. 

I want to begin with my favourite thing about this collection of terrifying tales; each and every story had the ability to secure my attention within the first one or two pages. Every single one. 

For one book to keep the same tone throughout is impressive enough, but for several different authors to (separately) keep the same dark, creepy atmosphere from the first story to the last was genuinely brilliant, and definitely my favourite thing about Dark Stars

I also loved how each story was vastly different from one another, making the continual tone of the book that much more impressive. 

There were so many different tales within this collection, from a narrative about a father coping with his grief, to a young man trying to win the favour of a vampire; every author should be proud that they’ve all written such brilliant stories. 

While the language used and writing style was different with each author, the stories flowed brilliantly from one to the next, but also had a clear ending each time. I was so impressed with the stories alone, and with them combined as a series. 

Each tale was well-written and paced very well, with all of them fitting perfectly into short story form. Every story had a brilliant and unique twist, and I honestly couldn’t put it down. 

I adored how vague each tale was to begin with; every author mastered the art of ‘show don’t tell’, which was incredible when reading the range of stories within the book. 

They were all amazingly creative and intriguing stories, and I can’t wait to pick up another horror book, hoping that too has the same great atmosphere this one did. 

Having said all this, there were one or two stories that didn’t quite live up to the rest, but that isn’t to say they were not also well-written and cleverly paced, they just didn't seem to have the same ‘oomph’ as the rest. 

In the midst of all these tales, there are a couple I would like to highlight for being simply incredible. 

Volcano was a favourite of mine, written by Livia Llewellyn; it followed a young girl trying to make it through the summer by finding a job, and she definitely got herself an odd one. 

This one stood out to me because of the start, which really gripped me, and the twist was so beautiful and strange; I just adored this one. 

Another favourite of mine has to be The Familiar’s Assistant, by Alma Katsu; this was definitely one of the best tales within Dark Stars

A young man wishes to meet a legendary vampire, but to do so, he must endure a strange journey first. 

This story was incredible; it had a wonderfully dark feel to it, and was written so carefully and with grace and intellect, that it translated to a stunning story that I absolutely loved. 

Dark Stars is out now! 

Written by Melissa, who you can follow on Twitter @melissajournal

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