Friday, July 15, 2011

Review: The Q Word and Other Short Stories by Richard Lee Byers

Book Description:

The ogre hasn’t seen a human in years. So why are all these knights trying to slay him?

Her Feline Majesty’s top agent challenges the powers of Hell.

An office building becomes a mysterious and inescapable prison.

A hurricane plunges a small Florida town into horror.

Richard Lee Byers is the author of over thirty fantasy and horror novels. The Q Word and Other Stories is a selection of nine of his best short stories, including one never before published.


This collection has something for fiction, fantasy, horror, and even paranormal. Can you guess my favorite? Actually, I was fond of them all and looked at this book as a good testing the waters type deal because the author was fairly new to me. Lately it feels like I've been reading paranormal romance for eons and I was truly getting burnt out on the genre. *gasp* Don't throw things and curse! I just definitely needed a break, something The Q Word provided.

Blood and Limestone was my personal favorite and not just because it featured a vampire. I could picture the cathedral in my mind, the majestic beauty of old stone, and I empathized with Raoul because he was being condemned for his very nature, the part of him that he has no control over. He tried to explain himself to Genevieve, to show that he was not evil, to appeal to her sense of sympathy, but in the end she would not hear him. Generating an emotional response from a reader in a short story format isn't easy to accomplish, so I was shocked to find myself feeling angry at Genevieve, and by extension the church, and then saddened by the circumstances Raoul faced.

Griefer Madness was another good one, and the idea of LARPing seemed thrilling and terrifying all at once. I loved the combination of real life mixing with a role playing, virtual reality game. Very creative.

Each story offers the reader something different and will appeal to a wide audience for sure. I can't wait to pass these off to my husband. The short story format makes it easier to fit into a busy day, and I read while my kids were playing games. I leave it to you to choose which you like best. Me, I liked them all!

*Reviewed by Anna Dougherty
*I was given this copy by the author for review purposes.

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