Halloween has always been my favorite holiday. So this eclectic anthology of Halloween stories was a natural choice for me to read. Over all, this diverse group of stories is well written and well put together. I especially enjoyed A Witchy Challenge, The UnHaunted House and A Piece of her Soul. Dracula's Bath is a classic horror. Although a few of the stories have familiar, well-used plots, they are all enjoyable in their own way. A recommended read for those who can't get enough of Halloween!
The UnHaunted House-Lozi Hart
Magazine writer Mandy is getting desperate. She's been at a popular haunted estate for a week and still hasn't seen a single ghost. Her boss is going to be furious! To make Mandy feel a bit better, the estate's owner has invited her to authentic 1930's theme party. Maybe the ghosts will show after all. An evening with a handsome escort, lots of wine, and the tale of a missing Picasso have Mandy enchanted. But the ghosts aren't arriving and Mandy is leaving in the morning.
This is a brilliant little story with a nice unexpected twist.
Trick for a Treat-Keri Ford
Kelly's not just shocked when her old boyfriend returns to town after cruelly dumping her years earlier, she's angry! All those years ago, David wanted more out of life, but now he craves small town living and wants to rekindle his relationship with Kelly. But she wants no parts of him or his plans. All Kelly is concerned with is her annual Halloween costume party. David arrives and he's in hot pursuit.
A story of forgive and forget set against the backdrop of Halloween. The plot is familiar, but the author tells the story well.
Dracula's Bath-J.W. Keleher
Viocu and his brother Petra are given a most dreaded task-preparing the yearly bath of Dracula. Just a bit too hot or too cold will mean sudden death for the boys, and even if the bath is just right doesn't guarantee saving their lives. As the boys try to balance the perfect bath, the Master arrives and is ready to test the water. Life and death now hang in the balance.
You get a very creepy and disturbing little gem. In my opinion, the freakiest story of the bunch.
Masked Souls-Tonya Kappes
Payton only has one thing on her mind as she prepares for her tenth high school anniversary party-Revenge. It's Halloween night, and she arrives one hundred pounds thinner than she had been the last time her classmates laid eyes on her. All those years ago, a cruel joke nearly destroyed her. Now she's back and she can't wait to see their expressions when they find out what a thin, vibrant woman she has become. But a chance meeting with an old faithful friend has her changing her mind about her mission.
This is an interesting story of finding out what is really important in life. As with Trick For a Treat, it's a familiar plot but well told.
A Witcherly Challenge-Maddie James
Feisty Jade never knew she was destined to be witch until she was seventeen. By then, she should have been well into her witch studies. But at twenty-two, she was in the Lotions-and-Potions class for the third and final time. If she failed the exam again, who knew what would happen to her. After sassing off to her instructor, Jade is forced to face the High Warlock. He issues her with a task-find her grandmother and return her to the clan or else she will fail her final exam and not graduate. But finding her grandmother is a task Jade is certain she can perform.
A great whip smart story of a sassy witch in training. This is my favorite of the bunch!
An old man has a story to tell-one accompanied with a stern warning that may save your life and your soul.
This was a very short, odd read.
The Dragon Keeper-Janet Eaves
Tom awakes in an alcoholic haze to find the beautiful Gabriella in his home. At first, he thinks she is a cruel prank being played one of his former friends. Gabriella looks too much like his late wife, Karen. As he tries to shoo the woman from his home, strange occurrences begin to happen leading Tom to believe that maybe the spirit of his dead wife is still lurking.
This is a very well written short with a satisfying conclusion.
A Piece of her Soul-Magdalena Scott
Jacqueline possesses a very special gift-helping people find the part that is missing from their soul and allowing them happiness. Living in the city and helping so many people has exhausted her. A move to the country means a fresh start. But meeting hunky neighbor Matt Chambers isn't what she bargained for. Jacqueline fights with all her might to keep her feelings at bay for Matt while trying desperately to figure out what he needed to fix his soul and finding a surprise along the way.
This is a very lovely, romantic story.
Finders Seekers-Jennifer Johnson
Garland McGuire experiences the shock of his life when he walks into his office to find a naked woman. Sure it's a cruel ploy by his former wife; Garland is angry and wants an explanation. Catherine, the naked woman, has been sent by her best buddy Viv to help Garland find a few misplaced checks. Catherine is a "Finder". Garland is naturally suspicious, but needs to know more about Catherine and her wonderful gift.
You get a fresh, breezy little story with great characters and a satisfying conclusion.
Halloween Anthology, 2010. A collection of eerie short stories, for Halloween or not! Exclusively from Turquoise Morning Press authors.
An Unhaunted House by Lozi Hart, A Trick for a Treat by Keri Ford, Dracula's Bath and Fireside by J.W. Keleher, Masked Souls by Tonya Kappes, A Witcherly Challenge by Maddie James, The Dragon Keeper by Janet Eaves, A Piece of her Soul by Magdalena Scott, and Finders Seekers by Jennifer Johnson.