Source: From the Author in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.
Publisher: Crossroad Press
Publication Date: January 9, 2016
The Seeds of Nightmares is the first collection of short fiction by horror and genre author Tony Tremblay, under his own name. This collection includes many of his published stories (under the pseudonym, T. T. Zuma), as well as the novellette, The Strange Saga of Mattie Dyer, published here for the first time. The thirteen tales in The Seeds of Nightmares run a gambit of genres from terrifying horror, atmospheric noir, to the blackest (and bloody) dark humor.
From the introduction by acclaimed author, John McIlveen (Hannahwhere, Inflictions):
In THE SEEDS OF NIGHTMARES, Tony offers us a smorgasbord – a feast of emotions and genres that cover the spectrum. Take his opening offering for example, the nasty little novelette The Strange Saga of Mattie Dyer, a darkly humorous, Lovecraftian, western, tale of vengeance (yes, you read that right). Wrought with unsavory and despicable characters—a thwarted woman, a vile creature, redneck gold-diggers, and Indians—it’s a virtual Pandora’s Box and a hell of a first run…. There will be twists, bumps, a little blood, and possibly a few tears, but you’re tough…you can take it. So have a seat, strap in, and enjoy the ride!
Stories in this collection include:
The Strange Saga of Mattie Dyer
The Old Man
The Burial Board
The Soldier’s Wife
The Black Dress
Chiyoung and Dongsun’s Song
Husband of Kellie
An Alabama Christmas
Disclaimer: This book is for PG-13/ R audiences. There is violence and triggering content.
I had the pleasure of meeting this local author at the Vermont Comic Con this summer and I love the idea of showcasing local authors. I think we all need to stick together and share the love (so to speak). When I inquired about his book I was a little concerned that I would not be able to read it - not because of bad writing but because I am SO afraid of horror, but I wanted to push myself and and so happy that I did because this book was WONDERFUL!
Tony puts together a series of short stories all with just enough crazy to make you question everything but it all feels so right. There are elements of horror, mystery, fantasy, and even some humor in these pages - all of which I really enjoyed. What I loved most about this work though was beyond the stories - it was that before each one you learned about the piece, its life, its moment of creation, how the author worked with each one. I felt like I had one-on-one time with Tony, like I really got to know him and his work on a more intimate level.
Don't get me wrong though, the stories were just as captivating as the author. Two of my favorites were The Strange Saga of Mattie Dyer and Tsunami. Since these are short stories I don't want to give too much away, but Mattie's story involves a monster, a curse of sorts, and a woman living alone. Then there was Tsunami, about a family vacationing and a mother questioning everything, the ending of this one made me gasp SO hard.
I really fell for these tales, they were spooky enough to get my heart racing but tame enough that I did not pee myself. If you are a fan of scary but not too scare Seeds is just up your alley.