A Haunting Of Ghosts by Maynard Sims – review by Mario Guslandi

A Haunting of Ghosts by Maynard Sims
Hardcover: 144 pages
Publisher : Enigmatic Press, UK 2012

Maynard Sims ( i.e. Len Maynard & Mick Sims) is an excellent writing duo, author of several collections of ghost and horror stories, a few horror novellas and some supernatural thrillers.

The classical British ghost story was their debut genre , to which they have recently returned with the delightful collection “Flame and Other Enigmatic Press”, published by Sarob Press. A new collection of ghostly tales in the tradition of MR James (but their models are apparently Wakefield, Rolt, Cowles and Munby) is now available in a limited hardcover edition of 144 pages, including six stories.

While in their last book they surprised their fans by penning a series of stories with a one-word title , here they revert to their customary knack for creating stories endowed with long, imaginative titles. Another sign of their return to their origins.

Needless to say, all the featured tales are fully enjoyable, a real delight for the readers fond of elegant, subtly unsettling dark fiction. Most of the stories are told in the classical setting of two gentlemen (Pullford and Priestley, a couple of widowers) sitting around a fireplace and savoring a good cigar and a generous glass of spirit.
“The Man Who Wore the Wrong Coat” , revolving around a cursed chapel sitting in the garden of a country mansion, is a fine example of traditional, enticing ghost story.

“The House with Too Many Windows” is a puzzling, atmospheric piece blending reality and dream, while “Love Lies Floating On the Water” is a disturbing, fascinating tale set in a haunted Venice, where life, love and death chase each other in a phantasmagoric race.

The ingredients of the melancholy, and disquieting “The House That Was Too Grand For Laughter”, in which sadness is stronger than fear, include a haunted mansion, a shaky marriage and a lost child.

My favorite piece is, perhaps, “The Church With the Tower That Moved” an outstanding story with a distinctive Jamesian flavor, but the whole book is a little treasure of pleasurable shivers and intriguing darkness.

Review by Mario Guslandi

News: EVIL DEAD Redband Teaser Trailer

The new EVIL DEAD teaser trailer is out. I wasn’t too bothered about this film being made. I thought it was a bad idea, but hey, Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell are behind it. And the thought of a female Ash? If they can do the same as they did for Starbuck in BSG, it’ll work really well. But, it wouldn’t really be EVIL DEAD would it? Most remakes are pretty bad, and I guess I was expecting this to be the same.

Well, I just watched the teaser trailer and, ummm, well, just wow. Such a short clip;so much in there. It tells you; this is something you are familiar with, we’ve all been here before. Very quickly you realise though; same story, same setting, but this isn’t the cheap and cheesy gore of the original EVIL DEAD. This is, well … there were a couple of moments when I flinched, or felt a very strong urge to turn away. This is EVIL DEAD the ‘realistic’ version, I guess.

Frankly, it looked amazing. Totally disturbing, with the sort of imagery that tends to stick in your mind for years. And, you know, it looks so good that I don’t even know if I’ll actually be able to watch it (woos that I am).

Anyway, needless to say, this very short teaser trailer with so much packed in NOT SAFE FOR WORK. NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN. DO NOT SHOW IT TO YOUR GRANDMA!