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November 4, 2019

A Midnight Clear by Sam Hooker, et al. ~ a Review

by MK French


Christmas is seen as a time of cheer and joy, but not everyone enjoys the season. This collection of six short stories plays off the darker potential in the season, sometimes dipping into outright horror.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

A Midnight Clear
November 2019; Black Spot Books; 978-1733599443
ebook, print (228 pages); horror
Santa's elves are faced with insanity in the Candy Court for the first time. The changing seasons determined by elder gods' exchange is interrupted by a young girl having a hard time understanding illness and death. A working wolf with anxiety is plagued with horrible dreams after being bitten. Demons of past, present, and future try to sway the choice for the afterlife. A woman disenchanted by the holidays hardens into ice.

My favorite tale by far is the opener. The idea of elves having the Candy Court is wonderful, and I laughed at the idea of meanie being the worst name an elf can call another. They're so sweet and hard-working, and taking on less than two jobs is a horrible thought. I don't want to spoil it, but it is a wonderful blend of the Santa mythos as well as that of unspeakable, unpronounceable and unnamed horrors that would drive creatures mad just by seeing a figure of it. (Horror fans likely will understand the reference just from that, and yes, I found it as horribly hilarious as it sounds.)

Our closer story is just as good, though it drags in the beginning because it's a Christmas story for our current times and very much a warning for us not to let consumerism take over our hearts.

Buy A Midnight Clear at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband and three young children.

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2 comments:

  1. meanie. lol sounds good. i have to be in the right mood for anthologies, but have read more of them this year and enjoyed them
    sherry @ fundinmental

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