It's so easy to be distracted by the powerful writing and insightful analysis that one misses Ozick's inability to deliver on the larger thematic promises of her latest collection.
There's something ugly at the heart of this story of superheroics, something that utterly conflicts with the book's sometimes better nature.
There are sinister elements at work in Cote Smith's debut novel that mark it as an honest horror story of the best kind. If only they didn't also compromise it so fundamentally.
Formally inventive, beautifully written and thematically dense, Brendan Connell's latest collection is a multi-layered anthology that compels multiple readings.
The Incarnations works perfectly as a collection of studied, precise short stories unified by simple but powerful themes and a bevy of stylistic strengths.
Ligotti's stories seem almost violently unpalatable. They afford neither easy resolutions nor the seemingly ambiguous but ultimately fulfilling pleasures of so many mystery stories.