House of a Thousand Hearts by Scott Hale
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
In the long traditions of grand horror, I was very satisfied with this short story's descriptions. We've got a deep and overwhelming monster toying with generations of the family, a house that has become the physical manifestation of it, but more importantly, we've got a link to the author's other creations.
I love stories that build something much bigger than just themselves, and the shared worlds give us a sense of awe that becomes a character all to itself. Hell, the Worms are very interesting characters, and the Trauma, itself, is too.
This story is before the great Trauma, but it presages the Trauma quite nicely, giving us a little slice and dice and the ever-present vermillion veins. The forest, the corruption of the world, and the promises of the nightmare beasts got my heart pumping and had me sitting on the edge of my metaphorical seat.
My only complaint is the conclusion of the story. It's fine in the grand scheme of the world, but it doesn't do justice to the microcosm already established within itself, unless, of course, the main character was the house and the monstrosity. (I'm tempted to leave it at that and assume I hit my hammer on the nail.)
That being said, it fits quite nicely with the Ashen Man side story within The Bones Of The Earth. :)
View all my reviews