Book Review: If Only A Heart and Other Tales of Terror by Caleb Stephens

08/06/2022     Charli     Book Reviews

I received this book for free from BookSirens in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: If Only A Heart and Other Tales of Terror by Caleb StephensIf Only A Heart and Other Tales of Terror by Caleb Stephens
Published by Salt Heart Press on 10/03/2022
Genres: Fiction / Horror
Pages: 186
Format: ARC, eBook
Source: BookSirens
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five-stars

An unlikely friendship is born in the red clay dirt of a trailer park. Two latchkey kids who will do anything to hold onto one other, despite the consequences.

A disabled boy and his sister move into a house by the sea, one haunted by a demon living in the walls.

A father on a camping trip in a remote section of Appalachia wakes to find his daughter missing, taken by something not quite human.

A traumatized teenager stumbles across a strange slide at a waterpark-one only he can see.

If Only A Heart and Other Tales of Terror is a visceral collection of thirteen stories that explores what happens when we open ourselves to others and dare to let them in. There are monsters on these pages, yes, ones whose teeth cut deep, but never as deep as the teeth of the monsters in the mirror.

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I really enjoyed this book. The stories in it weren’t exactly terror-inducing (I don’t scare easily though, so that’s probably just me and my brain) but they were very haunting and very creepy. Especially The Wallpaper Man and The Crowing. Those were awesome stories and I really loved them.

I appreciated that these stories left off in a way that made sense. There weren’t any abrupt endings like the author didn’t know how to end the story so he just cut it off. I genuinely appreciated that because it is one of my biggest pet peeves with short stories in the horror genre.

I definitely look forward to reading more by this author – his stories are to die for (no pun intended).

five-stars

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