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Fresh Cut Tales: A Collection of Dark Fiction

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When darkness appears, so will those things that stay hidden during the day, anxiously waiting for you to stumble upon them. And when you do, you will find yourself immersed in a world so bizarre and strange. Will you escape unscathed? Or was it all just some horrible nightmare? Fresh Cut Tales revisits 8 previously published tales along with 8 all new stories. Kenneth W. C When darkness appears, so will those things that stay hidden during the day, anxiously waiting for you to stumble upon them. And when you do, you will find yourself immersed in a world so bizarre and strange. Will you escape unscathed? Or was it all just some horrible nightmare? Fresh Cut Tales revisits 8 previously published tales along with 8 all new stories. Kenneth W. Cain has hoisted up his axe and given all 16 stories a fresh cut. You’ll get a little taste of it all here in the pages of Fresh Cut Tales. You’ll travel through doors not intended to open. You’ll find yourself spiraling up through tight spaces and ending up in creepy places. Monsters will show their faces, and everywhere you look there will be traces of the unknown, the supernatural, the world we aren’t so familiar with. Does it really exist? In these stories you’ll travel near, to your backyard, your own house, or your thoughts. You’ll travel far, to Earth’s core, outer space, or beyond. You’ll discover strange new worlds and encounter horrible beasts, the most familiar of which will be that of man or woman, a loved one, a child. Together we will test the human spirit, see who falls and who rises above. Who of you will champion this darkness, brave the unknown, face these fears and endure? Turn the pages and see.


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When darkness appears, so will those things that stay hidden during the day, anxiously waiting for you to stumble upon them. And when you do, you will find yourself immersed in a world so bizarre and strange. Will you escape unscathed? Or was it all just some horrible nightmare? Fresh Cut Tales revisits 8 previously published tales along with 8 all new stories. Kenneth W. C When darkness appears, so will those things that stay hidden during the day, anxiously waiting for you to stumble upon them. And when you do, you will find yourself immersed in a world so bizarre and strange. Will you escape unscathed? Or was it all just some horrible nightmare? Fresh Cut Tales revisits 8 previously published tales along with 8 all new stories. Kenneth W. Cain has hoisted up his axe and given all 16 stories a fresh cut. You’ll get a little taste of it all here in the pages of Fresh Cut Tales. You’ll travel through doors not intended to open. You’ll find yourself spiraling up through tight spaces and ending up in creepy places. Monsters will show their faces, and everywhere you look there will be traces of the unknown, the supernatural, the world we aren’t so familiar with. Does it really exist? In these stories you’ll travel near, to your backyard, your own house, or your thoughts. You’ll travel far, to Earth’s core, outer space, or beyond. You’ll discover strange new worlds and encounter horrible beasts, the most familiar of which will be that of man or woman, a loved one, a child. Together we will test the human spirit, see who falls and who rises above. Who of you will champion this darkness, brave the unknown, face these fears and endure? Turn the pages and see.

30 review for Fresh Cut Tales: A Collection of Dark Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    3 1/2 stars but rounding up. Don't ask me to rate each individual story because I am far too lazy. The cover? Oh how, it haunts me. Those must be demon tails, right? Otherwise I can’t deal. This is a short story collection of 16 horror and horror-ish tales narrated by Nelson Pyles. He has a down to earth every man sort of tone that kept me listening and he does a great job with the voices, never sounding forced or mechanical or too deadly serious. Of Shadows The last thing Ellen remembers was walki 3 1/2 stars but rounding up. Don't ask me to rate each individual story because I am far too lazy. The cover? Oh how, it haunts me. Those must be demon tails, right? Otherwise I can’t deal. This is a short story collection of 16 horror and horror-ish tales narrated by Nelson Pyles. He has a down to earth every man sort of tone that kept me listening and he does a great job with the voices, never sounding forced or mechanical or too deadly serious. Of Shadows The last thing Ellen remembers was walking her dog. Now her head hurts and she’s locked in a cage. As she gets her wits about her, she realizes that she is not alone and that she is in a dungeon . . . This is a crazy tale of tale of survival. Having recently read King’s Revival, I have to say this one gave me the creeps. Ugh, those images will forever be burned into my memory. Avenged This is a straight up western revenge tale and, to be real, it just wasn’t my thing. A man walks into a bar to avenge the death of his crew. Death happens. I enjoyed the narrator’s work with the different voices but I’m not a big fan of this kind of thing. Ordering Out This one is more my style. Percy is tired of the tedium of “ordering out”. It’s more fun when he can lure his meal into his lair. This story is more light-hearted than the previous two. Perfect Little Hands Yikes, this one is the darkest of the bunch so far. A man is grieving over the coffin of his dead step-daughter. He’s filled with jealousy and rage and as the story unravels he’s revealed to be the king of all creepy-ass step-daddies. Inside Out A journalist scores an interview with a convicted killer who tells him a strange story he never expected to hear. This is a crazy tale about childhood atrocities, a handicapped boy and perhaps a monster. This was one odd little tale that made complete sense in the end. Shards Gerald is a disturbed man. He has mommy issues and baby issues and he’s a bit of a mess but he’s managed to hide it from his wife until she reveals to him his worst fear come true and then everything unravels. I wish this one had been longer. I would’ve liked to have read all of the gory details. What is wrong with me? Twist of Pain Sarah is unstable and she may or may have not have just kidnapped a baby. I figured out where this one was going long before the reveal but I grew up watching too many creepy tv shows and had a mom who (view spoiler)[collected dead eyed dolls. (hide spoiler)] I’m hoping your childhood was different. Old Habits A couple plan a peaceful summer at a remote cabin in the woods. They probably should’ve stayed home. Hubby goes out for groceries and returns to find something terrible has happened but the worst is yet to come. This was a fun kind of cabin in the woods meets something other than hillbillies mash-up. In the Shadow of the Equine A man and his boy only want to spend some time bonding over majestic horses but instead they find themselves stranded on an island inhabited by deranged folks. This one has a bit of Alien/Lovecraftian inspired flair, great tension and some fabulous atmosphere. It was one of my favorites in the collection. Split Ends Sally suffers from a distressing hair disease that causes scabs and major hair fallout and requires obsessive brushing. She fears that she may have passed it along to her daughter. Her fear and anxiety are painful to witness but it’s obvious to see what the real “affliction” is here. Ew, this one will probably make you cringe. Body horror gets me every time. Spaceship Earth A rather clueless fellow accidentally stumbles upon Spaceship Earth and soon learns he can never leave. This one had an eerie Outer Limits vibe that brought me back to my teens when I spent endless hours binging on Outer Limits, Twilight Zone and Tales from the Darkside. Warmth Within Thy Depths A deep sea diver finds more than he bargained for down below. It’s not all mermaids and singing crabs under the sea, people. This wasn’t one of my favorites but you can’t win ‘em all. Never Free A lonely man awaits freedom from his imprisonment but is the cost worth it? This one was just ok for me. Ahate’s Spirit A young man who grew up surrounded by tales of spirit beasts encounters a magnificent and strange bird while out hunting. His first instinct is to kill it. He quickly learns that one should never mess with a spirit beast. Another “meh” story for me but I think it had more to do with my lack of sympathy towards the protagonist than anything else. Rebirth This is the tale of a mad scientist working like, well, a madman to bring back what he has lost. I have a soft spot for these guys who believe their creation will change the world but usually only manage to make their miserable lives all the more miserable. Redpath Stu After the death of his father, Stephen hits the road and lands in a very strange diner. This is another favorite. I have a fondness for weird “Stu” and this one hit all the right spots. Like all collections of this sort, some of the stories grabbed me more than others. A few are “meh” or just not to my personal taste but most of them are entertaining and they’re all very different which I enjoyed. There’s some great little tales here that would make terrific little short horror movies. *I received a copy of this from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rena Mason

    Each of the stories in this collection are different but well done. My favorite story was "In the Shadow of the Equine" - absolutely loved it. The mood, tone, and language of this story really stood out compared to the others. I finished the book two days ago and am still thinking about that story. Another memorable one was Redpath, Stu. It's just like a Friday night horror movie you'd expect to see on the Chiller Channel, but that's probably why I enjoyed it so much. The story had a nostalgic " Each of the stories in this collection are different but well done. My favorite story was "In the Shadow of the Equine" - absolutely loved it. The mood, tone, and language of this story really stood out compared to the others. I finished the book two days ago and am still thinking about that story. Another memorable one was Redpath, Stu. It's just like a Friday night horror movie you'd expect to see on the Chiller Channel, but that's probably why I enjoyed it so much. The story had a nostalgic "diner" horror aspect to it and while reading it I easily pictured the movie in my head. I don't know if there was supposed to be a running "theme" throughout the collection, I didn't pick up on it if there was, but I'm glad I didn't. I enjoyed reading a different story each time and not expecting it to be about a particular thing or follow a straight path. This was my first time reading this author, but he's on my radar now, and I'll definitely keep an eye out for his future works.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Squire

    Disclaimer: I was a beta reader for this collection. review to follow.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Randy Harmelink

    A mixed bag for me. A few stories I really enjoyed. Several left me puzzled about what I just read. Most were just OK.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rhonda

    I received a copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review. I have broken down and rated the individual short stories and placed my overall rating at the bottom. Of Shadows: A woman was out walking her dog and suddenly wakes up in a cage dangling above the floor. 5* Avenged: A cowboy seeks vengeance on the men who killed his crew. 5* Ordering Out: An elderly gentleman battles from within whether to call out for pizza again. (This one made me laugh) 5* Perfect Little Hands: A step-fath I received a copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review. I have broken down and rated the individual short stories and placed my overall rating at the bottom. Of Shadows: A woman was out walking her dog and suddenly wakes up in a cage dangling above the floor. 5* Avenged: A cowboy seeks vengeance on the men who killed his crew. 5* Ordering Out: An elderly gentleman battles from within whether to call out for pizza again. (This one made me laugh) 5* Perfect Little Hands: A step-father grieves over the coffin of step-daughter. 4* Inside Out: An incarcerated man is interviewed by a local newspaper after 15 years of silence. 4* Shards: A couple, who never wanted children, find out that they are pregnant. 4* Twist of Pain: A young woman steals a baby. 5* Old Habits: A man returns from grocery shopping to the cabin he and his wife are staying in for the Summer, but something has gone horribly wrong during his absence. 5* In the Shadow of the Equine: A father and son take a trip to an island to see the wild horses run. 4* Split Ends: A woman is afflicted with a rare 'hair' disease. 4* Spaceship Earth: A man finds what he thinks is a manhole cover in the middle of nowhere. 5* Warmth Within Thy Depths: A scuba diver is enjoying the ocean when he finds wreckage and a strange cave. 5* Never Free: A first-person story of a statue. 5* Ahote's Spirit: An indian brave happens upon a mysterious bird-like creature. 5* Rebirth: A man builds a mechanical 'being'. 5* Redpath, Stu: A young man pulls into a diner in the middle of nowheresville. (AWESOME) 5* I truly enjoyed this wonderful collection of dark fantasy/horror stories. Each have their own unique storyline and the outcome is always surprising, and some will make you think. I will be on the hunt for more from this author. My overall rating of this awesome collection is 5*. Highly Recommended.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    As one might guess, Fresh Cut Tails, err, Tales (hur, hur) is a collection of horror stories. An inked drawing depicting a scene accompanies each story, which is a nice little addition. It was a cool way to give readers a taste of what's in store. Though the stories were decent, they just lacked... something. They weren't so bad that I wanted to put the book down, but they just weren't interesting enough to generate any excitement on my end. Perhaps it's that the characters were really underdevel As one might guess, Fresh Cut Tails, err, Tales (hur, hur) is a collection of horror stories. An inked drawing depicting a scene accompanies each story, which is a nice little addition. It was a cool way to give readers a taste of what's in store. Though the stories were decent, they just lacked... something. They weren't so bad that I wanted to put the book down, but they just weren't interesting enough to generate any excitement on my end. Perhaps it's that the characters were really underdeveloped. I didn't know anything about them to care about them being stuck in these awful situations. I read several of them before deciding to move on. If you find yourself stuck and in need of a read, this book will get the job done. But with so many horror anthologies out there, I think you'd be better off elsewhere.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Paul Anderson

    A sharp, brutal collection from a new voice in horror fiction. I had the pleasure to read both the original pieces in this collection, as well as see the entire book take shape. There's a little bit of everything here; Cain takes on the tropes--vampires, zombies, werewolves, Lovecraftian horrors--but then goes into wildly different directions with other pieces. Best pieces are "In the Shadows", "Redpath, Stu", and "Perfect Little Hands." For quick bites to be read on breaks and elsewhere, it's h A sharp, brutal collection from a new voice in horror fiction. I had the pleasure to read both the original pieces in this collection, as well as see the entire book take shape. There's a little bit of everything here; Cain takes on the tropes--vampires, zombies, werewolves, Lovecraftian horrors--but then goes into wildly different directions with other pieces. Best pieces are "In the Shadows", "Redpath, Stu", and "Perfect Little Hands." For quick bites to be read on breaks and elsewhere, it's hard to go wrong here. [Full Disclosure: I read this collection in its embryonic stages as editor, then later, read the finished product.]

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    First of all I knew I would enjoy reading Fresh Cut Tales: A Collection of Dark Fiction from the time I started Of Shadows. It's an interesting and unique book of short stories of which there really wasn't ever a dull moment. Five stars and recommended of you like and enjoy short horror stories. First of all I knew I would enjoy reading Fresh Cut Tales: A Collection of Dark Fiction from the time I started Of Shadows. It's an interesting and unique book of short stories of which there really wasn't ever a dull moment. Five stars and recommended of you like and enjoy short horror stories.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Frazer Lee

    A fun collection that breathes new life into horror scenarios and gets better with each tale.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Fragrant

  11. 5 out of 5

    Robin Corbin

  12. 4 out of 5

    Cory Hubbell

  13. 4 out of 5

    Darkavenger

  14. 5 out of 5

    Glenn

  15. 5 out of 5

    Karen Julius

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sara Elizabeth

  17. 4 out of 5

    William Martin

  18. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Fantauzzi

  19. 5 out of 5

    Tom

  20. 4 out of 5

    Peggy

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ed Campbell

  22. 5 out of 5

    Phyllis A. Dohn

  23. 4 out of 5

    Robert Holt

  24. 4 out of 5

    Rene Branch

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ute Maria Magdalena von Hengstenberg

  26. 5 out of 5

    Janet Maria Scott

  27. 4 out of 5

    kimberly Moon

  28. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  29. 4 out of 5

    Raúl Moreno

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez

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