Haunted Bedtime Stories offers seven ghostly tales. Like most collections of short stories, depending on individual taste and interests, most readers aren’t going to love every single story but you should find that one piece that speaks to you. For me that was Aunt Francy’s Ghosts. Filled with vibrant and intriguing characters such as Aunt Francy herself who is full of life at 110 and cooler than most people any of us have probably ever met. She’s a creative talent and an independent, no-nonsense lady who happens to share her grand estate with lots of ghosts. She loves past eras like the 20s and 30s when people knew how to enjoy the good life and she likes to indulge in a glass of champagne every now and again. Who doesn’t?
Another noteworthy story was the first tale in the collection, Eternity Realty. The friendly “hi y’all” does not go hand in hand with what increasingly becomes a more sinister tone as the proprietor shows her unnamed guests around houses that come complete with blood stains. These can be easily washed off of course, the faceless house viewers and us readers are told. Annie’s Letters set in an insane asylum and Ashes are the other two stories I also really enjoyed.
I’d recommend this book for some light reading but just not before sleep 🙂 . ***
Check it out on Amazon HERE
Meikle beautifully captures the image of an isolated, Scottish island and the quiet pace of life before the peace is so harshly interrupted.
Marine biologist Duncan is staying on the island carrying out research and hoping to begin a relationship with the local pub owners’ daughter Meg. Old Tom, the island’s superstitious lighthouse keeper warns his young trainee Dick to stay indoors out of the mist. Is he senile or should the islanders take heed of his warning? Archaeology students working in the area have uncovered a burial mound and unwittingly unleash hell on the island. As the mist moves in, the body count rises and it is up to Duncan and his band of unlikely warriors to deal with the creatures attacking them from the mist.
The story starts off slow at first, introducing us to the characters and is told from multiple points of view, including Sam, an ageing sheepdog. Such a focus on characters is reminiscent of Stephen King. One of King’s best attributes as a writer is his ability to portray the people in his stories so vividly. Meikle has the same talent. Once the attacks begin the story really gets going and we read on with trepidation, hoping for Anne’s rescue and old Tom’s safety.
What exactly are these loathsome, deformed monsters and what have they been doing deep inside the mound? The book delves back thousands of years into the past to explain their origin.
An enjoyable read with likeable characters, not to be taken too seriously. ***
Check it out on Amazon HERE