Cut Corners – Volume 3


Late, dark nights are perfect for reading surreal and terrifying tales from some of the best story tellers in the horror business. Grit your teeth, sit by the fire pit, and be prepared to possibly not return from underneath the spell of their writing prowess, but if you do, we’re certain you’ll have a sinister smile to share. All these modern stories have an element of thought-provoking surprise and style.

It’s time for a truly strange and odd little book! Cut Corners – Volume 3 is a pocket-sized delight.

If you like unpredictable horror, this book is definitely for you. It’s creepy and fun, likely to get your mind racing, but not shock-at-any-cost, like I find a lot of modern horror can be.

Cut Corners – Volume 3 contains three stories:

Andromeda by Kealan Patrick Burke

A grim story of a teen girl hooked to her cell phone that will make you think outside of your comfort level. Kealan Patrick Burke is a hauntingly lyrical and original writer of horror that will leave you breathless. – from the blurb

I had my doubts as I began this one – stories of irritating school girls stalking boys on Instagram aren’t really my thing. But Andromeda becomes a gripping story with gorgeous imagery and an impending sense of doom.

It’s Halloween (always a good setting) and the adults are starting to act a little strangely… Horror descends and the teens have the edge, although they haven’t realised it yet! It was very easy to have this story play along in my mind like a fun horror film or perhaps one of the better episodes of Tales of the Unexpected.

25 pages

The Barrel by Bryan Smith

When a surprise barrel shows up out of nowhere on the back stoop, and the dogs start to bark at it uncontrollably, Martin becomes very suspicious and intrigued. Bryan Smith is a versatile and horrifying author who will leave you squeamish and chuckling. – from the blurb

A truly unique little gem of a tale! The first two-thirds of The Barrel is really just a man wondering what’s inside a mystery barrel… and it’s great. The suspends builds and I could really imagine myself in this guy’s shoes. Yes, I should probably call the police and wait for them to deal with it, but… I want to know what’s in the barrel!

The ending is quick-paced comedy genius, a wonderful contrast to what comes before. You get an inkling at what may be coming, but you really won’t guess it all. Cut Corners – Volume 3 is worth buying for The Barrel alone. I’ll definitely be keeping ’em peeled for Bryan Smith in the future.

23 pages

Afterparty by Ray Garton

Jarrett is getting famous on the entertainment scene, but what will he have to do to remain in the industry? Brought to you by Ray Garton, a master of explicit detail and tense horror that entrances readers and doesn’t let them go. – from the blurb

This is the more sophisticated story of the three. Afterparty is full of strange little nuggets, weird scenes and imagery. This works really well as a short story and, although I often disagree when people say they wish a short was longer, I would love to get more stuck in to this tale as a novel.

It’s a serious horror piece with truly unlikable aspects (in a good way) and it gets under your skin. I found myself wondering why the main character struggled with the guilt of one act so strongly, whilst he seemed to flick away other acts so easily. At first I thought it was bad writing (not fitting with the rest of the story) but then I realised it was a clever piece of character building. Part of the story is set in a creepy, lavish mansion with art that belongs in A Clockwork Orange – I can still wander around the corridors in my mind.

47 pages

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