Review: On the Night Border: Stories by James Chambers

This collection of dark fiction has a little bit of everything.



On The Night Border by James Chambers

Published September 2019

Dark Fiction  |  Goodreads  |  Amazon 

Source: Received for Review Consideration
Dark things stir in the night. When the world sleeps and quiet settles in, shadows assume sinister shapes, guilt and regret well up from the mind’s deepest recesses, and the lonely face their greatest fears. Darkness bares the secret truths whispered on the lips of the lost and the desperate. At night, terrors come alive. For those who journey too far into the dark, no escape remains—but there is a place from which to view these nightmares, a place…on the night border.

The fifteen stories collected here come from the last edge of the light and deliver glimpses into the dreadful, the mysterious, and the strange. These stories offer readers unsettling and weird visions from across the border, visions out of history and from the world around us, visions of cosmic horror, personal madness, and agonizing heartbreak.

A literary legend confronts the reality of a chaotic, uncaring universe. A young girl grows up in the shadow of a ferocious monster. A man seeks to kill his memories. Love defeats death in an odd world not unlike our own. An artist’s drawings unlock a terrifying truth of his adopted city. A mask burns. The mother of plagues offers a deadly future.

Readers will find here all of these and many other visions of what lies on the far side of the line, including, by special arrangement, stories of Lin Carter’s Anton Zarnak and Kolchak, the Night Stalker. Walk up to the edge. Listen to the whispers on the wind. Peer across at the terrors beyond from your vantage point…on the night border!

My 2 Cents For Free!


On The Night Border is a collection of dark stories that has a little something for everyone fond of horror fiction. Oftentimes a collection like this can feel repetitive and fatigue me so much that I need a break from it but that didn’t happen here. I never knew quite what I was getting into with each story and that’s the best feeling!

I’m not going to summarize every story because we are currently in an apocalypse and who has the time to read all that when you could be reading the book?! Also? Still lazy over here.

There were no badly written stories here nor were there any duds. There was only one story, the last one actually, that didn’t thrill me because it was about infectious disease and quarantine camps and death and this is all something I’m trying my best to avoid reading about right now. Totally not the story’s fault though.

My favorite stories are these:

Marco Polo: This one was pure grisly fun and I loved it. It reminded me of that old show Tales from the Darkside. Anyone but me remember that show with its wonderfully ghastly tagline: ‘there is, unseen by most, an Underworld, a place that is just as real, but not as brightly lit, a Dark side. The Dark Side is always there, waiting for us to enter, waiting to enter us.’? Mwahaha. This story and many of the stories in this book would fit right in on that show. If someone rich and famous is reading my dumb reviews PLEASE REBOOT TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE. This story, in particular, is dark and twisty and a little manic. The perfect type of story to escape into.

Sum’bitch and the Arakadile This story is a tale of monsters and monstrous mothers and it made me sad for a few reasons I will not spoil. It’s short and to the point and might just poke you in the heart if you have one.

Mnemonicide: My notes say only YIKES! Haha, so I’m going on memory here. This one is about the purging of memories. We’ve all likely said and/or done things, maybe seen a few things, or met some people that we’d like removed from our brains. One dude decides to go for it in the most selfish way possible. This one BOTHERED me so much! You must read it and get bothered too!

What’s in the Bag, Dad? The setting is a traveling circus and ever since falling in absolute love with Katherine Dunn’s GEEK LOVE, I have a huge soft spot for those. There’s magic and pain and again some sadness here. It also kept me guessing which kept me reading because I am nosy and had to know what the hell was in the bag!

The Driver, Under A Cheshire Moon: Well, this sucker packs a punch. It’s dark but it is the best kind of dark. It lulls you into thinking one thing and then it sideswipes you with the truth of the situation. I ♥ it.

Living Dead: is a lighter-hearted story about the lovelorn and the living dead. This is my kind of story. And if you like this one you should also read Terry Maggert’s COOL TO THE TOUCH as a nice little companion piece.

I’ll stop here before I end up carrying on about all of the stories. Do yourself a favor and read this one if you need some fiction that’ll transport you to another world for a little bit. I don’t think you’ll regret it.

4 out of 5



Comments

  1. Wow - it's hard to find a collection where they are ALL hits!

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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  2. I really like the sound of this one. Sounds like a bunch of stories that I would probably enjoy.

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  3. "Mnemonicide" has my curiosity piqued with your "YIKES!":-) And the awesome cover!

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  4. Oh yeah, Tales from the Darkside! I can still recite that opening word for word, lol.

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  5. I do love finding a collection of stories where almost every one of them just works. This sounds really good!

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