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Inflictions

John McIlveen

ISBN 10: 1941408273 / ISBN 13: 9781941408278
Published by Crossroad Press, 2015
Condition: Good Hardcover
From Books Express (Portsmouth, NH, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Inflictions

Publisher: Crossroad Press

Publication Date: 2015

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Good

About this title

Synopsis:

Welcome to the world of John McIlveen. Enter, please, but be warned . . . here you will find tales that blur the lines of horror, vengeance, humor, sorrow, and humanity. You will encounter broken people with dark secrets and darker desires. Meet Justice, whose art exposes your soul. Ride along as a man's search for his daughter reveals that sometimes the best way to heal old scars is to make new ones. Go on vacation with the Seths, who are forced to play a game that is every parent's nightmare. Play a Sunday game of softball with the most unusual team imaginable. You will experience the foulest parts of humanity, as well as the funniest and sweetest. Some of these stories will make you laugh, some will anger or shock you, but all of them will affect you. You will love, hate, and sympathize with the characters, possibly at the same time.

Review:

"McIlveen paints with a broad palette of colors, and he blends them and highlights them with a master's touch. Tragedy and comedy, vengeance and salvation, hope and horror, the absurd and the sublime, all skillfully worked into the same pages and presented here for our enjoyment."
- James A. Moore, Author of The Seven Forges series

"Shocking, moving, and always surprising, John McIlveen's Inflictions will delight and terrify the reader in equal measures. A solid collection from a talented writer."
- Tim Lebbon, author of Coldbrook

"A disturbing and thoroughly entertaining creepfest. So much wicked fun."
- New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Maberry.

The list of my favorite genre short-story authors hasn't changed all that much over the years. At the top of that list are writers such as Stephen King, Bentley Little, Graham Masterton, Ray Garton, Gary Braunback., and Chet Williamson. Of course there are other authors who I admire that write short fiction, but the ones I've listed above are absolute must-haves whenever a new collection of theirs is released.
Based on the strength of the 24 stories in Inflictions, John McIlveen is the latest addition to my list. If you live outside of New England, you might be scratching your head because his name may not be all that familiar. If that's so, then I'll say without reservation that John McIlveen may be the best genre short story writer you've never heard of.
McIlveen's tales run the gambit of dark fiction. It's obvious from this collection that the author has a gift for writing in many genres,specifically extreme horror, perversely comedic pieces, and eroticism. But no matter the subject or narrative, in Inflictions, McIlveen never fails to engage the reader.  Inflictions is highly recommended.
TT Zuma - Horror World


In his introduction to Inflictions, Christopher Golden describes JohnMcIlveen as an author who "pull[s] no punches." The short stories inthis collection prove that sentiment accurate. McIlveen's writing wrapsaround you like tentacles from a fog, and drags you into the ferociousmists kicking and screaming.  The stories in Inflictions are allloosely tied together under the broad theme of dark secrets. The talesexamine the sinister secrets we lock away from the public. McIlveentears away the façade of "normal" to expose the raw terror lurkingwithin. Abuse, lies, transgressions, and fear haunt these pages. Thetitle story highlights addiction, a topic threatening into the cliché,but in this case skillfully drawn in both sympathy and horror as wefollow protagonist down an endless spiral into nothingness. In "Make aChoice," we see a "typical" family trying to connect in a disconnected,modern world. Their attempt at "normal" turns into a terrifyingnightmare (no spoilers here) that will chill the blood. McIlveen's workreflects the ever-increasing isolation between individuals, and themonstrous results of that disconnect. His protagonists lose because they fail to see truth, reality, or their mistakes in time. Isn't this thedarkest, most terrifying fear we have? We will be the cause of our owndownfall? McIlveen has found that glowing coal of fear in our hearts,and he's ignited a firestorm.  The collection slows a little inthe middle with "Jerks." The idea is clever, but it's long and doesn'tentirely fit with the pacing of the shorter stories. Overall, this is an outstanding collection. McIlveen even manages to sneak in a bit ofhumor amidst the horror to keep his readers from sinking into the abyssentirely. Very well done and highly recommended

-- Dr. Alex Scully - Hellnotes

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