Friday, June 8, 2012

Andersen Prunty

One reviewer of Bury the Children in the Yard by Andersen Prunty, who gave the collection one star, said:

I got this book thinking it might be fun to read some horror stories in between classes. What I ended up getting was a selection of stories that did nothing more than make me go "Huh."

This must be one of those cases of one man's trash being another man's treasure. I loved this collection for precisely the same reason. Prunty never reveals the original source of the horror, never explains too much. He leaves it up to the reader to create their own interpretation. 

And it's not the kind of horror that's intended to scare the reader, or at least not in the traditional sense. I would describe it more as unsettling or disturbing--the kind of quiet horror that James Everington has also mastered.

My favorite in here is "Music from the Slaughterhouse," in which average, small-town folks find a fountain of youth and beauty. Of course, this comes with a hefty price. 

This is a very fine, unusual collection of stories that's free right now at Amazon.


  1. Chris,

    I'm with you on this. Prunty is, to me, one of the finest writers of unusual, surreal and horror fiction.

    As you say, he never reveals too much, much more willing than most to leave the blanks to be filled in by the reader.

    I find that, unfortunately, a rather large number of people don't appreciate the writer not talking down to them and treating them as if they're imbeciles, preferring that the writer hold their hand and explain everything so that they "get it".

    Imagination is always much better than something solid and tangible and this needs to be celebrated rather than ridiculed.

    So bravo to you, sir, for bringing this to the fore.

  2. Yeah, most everything with popular appeal tends to provide many answers, lead the reader by the hand. This can be okay from time to time and works in certain formats, but certainly it's not the only way to tell the story and can get pretty boring. Personally I find writing that digs deeper reveals less and provokes the imaginative/creative part of the reader's mind.

  3. Well with that comparison I've *got* to check this one out..!

  4. Fits the book perfectly.

    James, will be interested to see if you think the comparison holds up...