Midnight Mix-Tape: October 2017 – Halloween

Mixtapes ScatteredUncle Jake’s here to hook you up with some of the latest and greatest horror short stories available online right now.  Stories that will challenge, evolve, and redefine what horror is, and what it will become.  These are themed mix-tapes of fear, dread, danger, and gore, lovingly curated just for your reading pleasure.

It’s Halloween, and every creak of the porch or knock on the door is an invitation. Do you dare open it and let the goblins in? Oh sure, it sounds like kids in costumes, with their high, sugared voices saying, “Trick-or-treat,” but who can be sure? If you’re the adult who was wrangled into handing out the goodies, then every time you touch that doorknob you run the risk of monsters. Of things that want more than candy to devour that evening. Of grabbing claws and biting teeth. Of something that’s just waiting for you to answer, a smile touching your lips before it falls away in horror.

At least, that’s what I always think of when I think of Halloween. I think of the monsters hiding behind the masks, mixing with the children to prey on the adults who still have enough Halloween spirit to decorate their homes or porches or apartment doors. Here’s a few stories for you, while you’re waiting for the doorbell, passing the time until the next batch of creatures finds your home.

Track One: The Blackbird Whistling, or Just After by Orrin Grey

This story is a love letter to Roger Zelazny and his novel, A Night in the Lonesome October, which, for my money, is the most Halloween novel you might ever read. When I first came across this story I loved it so much that I had to track down everything else Grey had written, too.

Track Two: The Totals by Adam Troy-Castro

In this fantasic monster story, Clutch walks into a diner (squeezing his bulk through the door) after he’s just killed someone. Again.

Track Three: 10/31: Bloody Mary by Norman Partridge

The boy is a survivor of 10/31, barely scraping along until he meets the ethereal Bloody Mary, and in this epic story she teaches him how to do more than survive . . . she teaches him to thrive.

Hidden Track

 

Sometimes you’ve got to dig a little deeper. Pull a book down from your shelf, run out to the library, or order it from Amazon. Get a collection or anthology in your hands, crack the pages, and get into it. These “Hidden Tracks” can’t be found online (as of this publication), but are worth seeking out and devouring. Enjoy the thrill of the hunt by tracking them down.

The October Country by Ray BradburyTrack Four: Homecoming by Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury is no joke, and the man loved Halloween. If you’ve read your way through 20th Century short stories, no doubt you’re familiar with the man and his particularly American Midwest-version of a crisp, pumpkin-colored Halloween. This story, from his collection October Country, is about a boy named Timothy and a gathering of the Elliot family. Bradbury has a lot of Halloween tales, but this one’s my favorite.

JAKE MARLEY

 

If you enjoyed our Midnight Mix-Tape and want to read our Hidden Tracks please consider clicking through to our Amazon Affiliate links. If you do you’ll help keep the This Is Horror ship afloat with some very welcome remuneration.

 

Buy The October Country by Ray Bradbury


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