Hall of Mirrors: Tales of Horror and the Grotesque. Volume Three. Three original stories from award-winning novelist, Mike Bennett. Expect violence, horror, strong language and adult situations.
"Mike Bennett's brilliant grasp of horror may make your head explode. While he is often compared to Stephen King, he is in fact better." Jennifer Cummings. Amazon.com review of Hall of Mirrors Volume One.
In this volume are the stories:
Trolls. An urban horror story. Edith, elderly and alone and living in an inner-city council block, finds herself the victim of a gang of hoodie-wearing children. She believes they are monsters. Something her son, Martin, finds incredible ... until he encounters them for himself.
Wet Velvet. Richard Meacher has a dark and terrible desire that he’s managed to keep secret … until now. A dark and twisted tale that you won't forget in a hurry.
Give Me a Hundred. Benny is late for a hold-up: it’s a hot day, he’s stressed-out, and the large replica handgun in his waistband keeps jabbing at his genitals. Unfortunately for him, his discomfort is only just beginning.
"As always Mike knocks this one out of the park. Suitably creepy with a realisation that it could just be happening now." Mark Bailey. Smashwords.com review of Trolls
"Trolls... yeah, right. That is, until Mike Bennett takes on the subject in a way that will have you doing double takes at half seen things out of the corner of your eye. Beats the hell out of Billy Goats Gruff." David G. Dayton. Smashwords.com review of Trolls.
"A modern master of horror, dark comedy, and creepy psychological thrillers. I won't compare him to anyone else because quite frankly, in my humble opinion, he's head and shoulders above them all." Daniel Shaurette. Out of the Coffin podcast.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The Amazon blurb for Mike Bennett's horror collection "Trolls and Other Stories" describes the book as "tales of horror and the grotesque." The emphasis should definitely be on the grotesque part here, because these three stories are about as perverse and perversely fascinating as any I can recall reading in a long time.
The title story, "Trolls" is the longest and actually the weakest of the three. A man goes to help out his elderly mother, whose apartment, as well as those of the neighbors, is being repeatedly vandalized. He suspects a group of neighborhood kids and, as he finds out more about them, suspects they may not be human at all. The story's title provides a big hint to what the son's suspicions are. The second story, "Wet Velvet" is the best of the three, but it's really impossible to describe on a general review page because of the rather extreme nature of its sexual content. Let's just say that it involves a man whose cheating...
(Originally reviewed on Goodreads: [...]) I discovered Mike Bennett a few years ago by way of his podcast which I had downloaded onto my Creative Zen MP3 player to listen to during my commute. His 'One Among the Sleepless' and 'Underwood and Flinch' are great entertainment. His stories are great reads but having him narrate them as well is the total package.
Mike knows the language of the horror he writes, the build on each of these tales is really well done. But what I think is important in a story like Trolls is there are certain strategic vague bits. He leaves the palette and brush behind; he trusts the reader to consider beyond the story what it is that actually happened. Were they really? Or was it all in his mind? Rod Serling, Stephen King, or Clive Barker would agree on this point: trust the reader's imagination. It can be a delicate balance, but Mike makes it look easy.
Wet Velvet is sort of sick but the ending, once again, trusts the reader to carry...
I found Mike Bennett on podiobooks.com and started with One Among the Sleepless and was instantly hooked. I've since read/listened to all off his work and love them all. His short stories are sometimes creepy, sometimes funny and always a bit disturbing, but in the best way. I recommend anything he's written and his narration of One Among the Sleepless and Underwood and Flinch are the best I've ever heard. Well developed characters to love and hate, leaves you always wanting more. You won't be disappointed.
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