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The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Volume 1

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What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors in distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that? For this groundbreaking volume, the first of its kind, the ed What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors in distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that? For this groundbreaking volume, the first of its kind, the editors of Valancourt Books have scoured the world, reading horror stories from dozens of countries in nearly twenty languages, to find some of the best contemporary international horror stories. All the foreign-language stories in this book appear here in English for the first time, while the English-language entries from countries like the Philippines are appearing in print in the U.S. for the first time. The book includes stories by some of the world's preeminent horror authors, many of them not yet known in the English-speaking world: Pilar Pedraza, 'Mater Tenebrarum' (Spain) Flavius Ardelean, 'Down, in Their World' (Romania) Anders Fager, 'Backstairs' (Sweden) Tanya Tynjälä, 'The Collector' (Peru) Frithjof Spalder, 'The White Cormorant' (Norway) Jose María Latorre, 'Snapshots' (Spain) Luigi Musolino, 'Uironda' (Italy) Martin Steyn, 'Kira' (South Africa) Attila Veres, 'The Time Remaining' (Hungary) Lars Ahn, 'Donation' (Denmark) Bernardo Esquinca, 'Señor Ligotti' (Mexico) Cristina Fernández Cubas, 'The Angle of Horror' (Spain) Christien Boomsma, 'The Bones in Her Eyes' (Netherlands) Elisenda Solsona, 'Mechanisms' (Catalonia) Michael Roch, 'The Illogical Investigations of Inspector André Despérine' (Martinique) Solange Rodríguez Pappe, 'Tiny Women' (Ecuador) Bathie Ngoye Thiam, 'The House of Leuk Dawour' (Senegal) Marko Hautala, 'Pale Toes' (Finland) Yvette Tan, 'All the Birds' (Philippines) Ariane Gélinas, 'Twin Shadows' (Québec) Flore Hazoumé, 'Menopause' (Ivory Coast)


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What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors in distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that? For this groundbreaking volume, the first of its kind, the ed What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors in distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that? For this groundbreaking volume, the first of its kind, the editors of Valancourt Books have scoured the world, reading horror stories from dozens of countries in nearly twenty languages, to find some of the best contemporary international horror stories. All the foreign-language stories in this book appear here in English for the first time, while the English-language entries from countries like the Philippines are appearing in print in the U.S. for the first time. The book includes stories by some of the world's preeminent horror authors, many of them not yet known in the English-speaking world: Pilar Pedraza, 'Mater Tenebrarum' (Spain) Flavius Ardelean, 'Down, in Their World' (Romania) Anders Fager, 'Backstairs' (Sweden) Tanya Tynjälä, 'The Collector' (Peru) Frithjof Spalder, 'The White Cormorant' (Norway) Jose María Latorre, 'Snapshots' (Spain) Luigi Musolino, 'Uironda' (Italy) Martin Steyn, 'Kira' (South Africa) Attila Veres, 'The Time Remaining' (Hungary) Lars Ahn, 'Donation' (Denmark) Bernardo Esquinca, 'Señor Ligotti' (Mexico) Cristina Fernández Cubas, 'The Angle of Horror' (Spain) Christien Boomsma, 'The Bones in Her Eyes' (Netherlands) Elisenda Solsona, 'Mechanisms' (Catalonia) Michael Roch, 'The Illogical Investigations of Inspector André Despérine' (Martinique) Solange Rodríguez Pappe, 'Tiny Women' (Ecuador) Bathie Ngoye Thiam, 'The House of Leuk Dawour' (Senegal) Marko Hautala, 'Pale Toes' (Finland) Yvette Tan, 'All the Birds' (Philippines) Ariane Gélinas, 'Twin Shadows' (Québec) Flore Hazoumé, 'Menopause' (Ivory Coast)

30 review for The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Volume 1

  1. 5 out of 5

    Valancourt Books

    Now shipping: Limited Edition Hardcover Website Paperback Website Ebook Website Now shipping: Limited Edition Hardcover Website Paperback Website Ebook Website

  2. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Oakes

    full post is here: https://www.oddlyweirdfiction.com/202... "there's something universal about the telling and reading of a good, creepy tale." Here's the question asked by the editors: "What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors by distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that?" Lu full post is here: https://www.oddlyweirdfiction.com/202... "there's something universal about the telling and reading of a good, creepy tale." Here's the question asked by the editors: "What if there were a whole world of great horror fiction out there you didn't know anything about, written by authors by distant lands and in foreign languages, outstanding horror stories you had no access to, written in languages you couldn't read? For an avid horror fan, what could be more horrifying than that?" Luckily for readers like me who have experienced this dilemma, there's Valancourt's new Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories. This book is like a key that unlocks a door to a room which once opened, yields a library of previously-unknown treasures gathered from around the globe. As the editors note in their introduction, "if one takes the trouble to look hard enough, there's a much larger body of world horror fiction out there than any of us would suspect ... it often involves deep digging and venturing into uncharted waters." The "deep digging and venturing into uncharted waters" is what the people at Valancourt do best, no matter what they publish, so I knew before I even ordered this book that I would not be disappointed. I wasn't. Really, there isn't a bad story to be found in this book, and the beauty of this volume is in the diversity of points of view and storytelling, while encompassing ideas and themes that everyone everywhere will recognize. The full table of contents can be found at Valancourt Books' website, where there is also a blurb from Ann VanderMeer which explains one of the many reasons this particular volume is so important, so groundbreaking and so incredibly meaningful. As she notes, ​ "While the language of horror is universal, its means of expression necessarily varies from culture to culture... " and the stories in this book come from "voices and perspectives we have lived too long without." I agree wholeheartedly, and it's a shame that more of the work of these authors has yet to be translated into English. The editors ask and answer the question of why this is so in their introduction, but at the same time it is just a bit frustrating to know that so much great writing is out there that remains unavailable to an English-language readership. Hopefully some day this will change, but for now at least we have this first volume as an introduction. Very well done, and very highly recommended. Now awaiting a Volume Two.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mindi

    Review to follow...

  4. 5 out of 5

    Janelle Janson

    I have an obscure book recommendation for you! It’s unique in every which way and will not suit every reader. The book is a short story collection in the horror genre that knocked my Edgar Allen Poe socks off! Huge sigh of relief because I preemptively preordered the hardcover from Valancourt and it was wholeheartedly worth every penny. THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES (vol. 1) is a horror anthology featuring stories from all over the world. They’ve been translated into English, so hor I have an obscure book recommendation for you! It’s unique in every which way and will not suit every reader. The book is a short story collection in the horror genre that knocked my Edgar Allen Poe socks off! Huge sigh of relief because I preemptively preordered the hardcover from Valancourt and it was wholeheartedly worth every penny. THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES (vol. 1) is a horror anthology featuring stories from all over the world. They’ve been translated into English, so horror-obsessed people like myself finally get a chance to enjoy them. The Night Worms review team received paperback copies months ago, so I took my sweet time reading through it all. And while I certainly have my favorites, I think every story is at least four stars, some are five, and a couple of them are in the “all the stars” category. Valancourt Books is a special, near-and-dear-to-my-heart publisher because they revive old favorites and classics complete with beautiful new cover art. It’s like finding the gold in a treasure chest of horror classics. I encourage you to check them out. I collect the Paperbacks from Hell series and every anthology they put out. I recently ordered the rest of their Christmas books to complete my collection. Okay, back to world horror! Here are my standouts... Mater Tenebrarum (Spain) Pilar Pedraza The Time Remaining (Hungary) Attila Veres Down, in their World (Romania) Flavius Ardelean The Collector (Peru) Tanya Tynjälä Señor Ligotti (Mexico) Bernardo Esquinca The Bones in Her Eyes (Netherlands) Christien Boomsma Kira (South Africa) Martin Steyn Donation (Denmark) Lars Ahn Tiny Women (Ecuador) Solange Rodríguez Pappe Mechanisms (Catalonia) Elisenda Solsana All the Birds (Philippines) Yvette Tan Thank you so much Night Worms and Valancourt Books for my free copy.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Sadie Hartmann

    THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES is clearly a labor of love. Editors James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle set out on an ambitious quest to bring global, contemporary horror stories to an English-speaking audience. I'm not surprised by the scale of this project, I view Valancourt Books as "horror foragers" out there in the world discovering hidden gems, polishing them up, and presenting them to horror aficionados who treasure the work they do. There are 21 tales in this anthology, almost all THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES is clearly a labor of love. Editors James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle set out on an ambitious quest to bring global, contemporary horror stories to an English-speaking audience. I'm not surprised by the scale of this project, I view Valancourt Books as "horror foragers" out there in the world discovering hidden gems, polishing them up, and presenting them to horror aficionados who treasure the work they do. There are 21 tales in this anthology, almost all of them making their translated to English debut. So much work went into assembling this book, I have to tell you--the weight of importance carries over to the reader. I am horribly ignorant of anything outside of American horror so I went into this book with excitement and an eagerness for a new experience. After reading the intro, I felt intimidated by the scope & size of the project; the effort I would need to put into this anthology as an investment was tangible (it's a HUGE book). I decided to read a few stories at a time and then set it down in order to enjoy my other books. I highly recommend this method for almost all anthologies. Reading through an entire book of short stories back-to-back can feel laborious and disjointed--all those different sub-genres, voices, moods, and settings can become confusing and not enjoyable. I think this is why anthologies and collections are not as popular as they should be. Readers might feel obligated to read it cover to cover/finishing what they start and I just don't think that's the best way to read these kinds of books. Anyhoodles! My favorite stories were also the most memorable to me long after I read them--the other stories have all faded a bit. DOWN, IN THEIR WORLD by Romanian Flavius Ardelean was this unusual mash-up of subterranean/folklore that worked well for me The body horror of Finn Marko Hautala’s PALE TOES THE COLLECTOR with Greek mythology vibes by Tanya Tynjälä BACKSTAIRS by Swedish author Anders Fager was unsettling and scary I think most people will mention, THE TIME REMAINING by Attila Veres a weird, psychological horror story about a toy that is...well, dying. I could see this as a film. I just want to thank Valancourt for this anthology and encourage readers to buy this for their horror collection. I feel these World Horror volumes will inform our understanding of horror and serve to enhance our love of the genre more fully.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie (That's What She Read)

    Review to come

  7. 5 out of 5

    Marie-Therese

    3.5 stars While I did not enjoy everything in this volume, I did enjoy much of what was presented here and, based on friends' reviews, I think there is something here for every reader. In their first volume of international horror stories, Valancourt Press has decided to focus almost exclusively on contemporary writers. With a range that spans Scandinavia to Africa, this is an expansive collection and will surely introduce every reader to at least one new voice. Editor James D. Jenkins, a remarka 3.5 stars While I did not enjoy everything in this volume, I did enjoy much of what was presented here and, based on friends' reviews, I think there is something here for every reader. In their first volume of international horror stories, Valancourt Press has decided to focus almost exclusively on contemporary writers. With a range that spans Scandinavia to Africa, this is an expansive collection and will surely introduce every reader to at least one new voice. Editor James D. Jenkins, a remarkable polymath, has translated a great many of the stories and he deserves kudos not just for his editorial but also for his writerly skill. My personal favourites include Pilar Pedraza's 'Mater Tenebrarum' which blends the Baroque and the picaresque; Attila Veres' deeply creepy 'The Time Remaining' (please, someone fluent in Hungarian, translate more Veres!); Bernardo Esquinca's noirish 'Señor Ligotti'; Flore Hazoumé's unsettling 'Menopause'; Anders Fager's 'Backstairs' which blends the Gothic, the Freudian, and the Lovecraftian in a deeply horrifying, very Scandinavian way; Solange Rodríguez Pappe's wry and very funny 'Tiny Women'; and Yvette Tan's elegiac, melancholic 'All the Birds'. I look forward to the next volume in this series. I'm sure I will find many more new voices to inspire thrills and chills courtesy of Jenkins and everyone at Valancourt.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Clay C.

    # This collection was such a delight to read. A lot of love and thought was put into this by the people at Valancourt and it shows, especially given the fact that editor/publisher James Jenkins translated almost all of the stories here. In fact, all but 1 of the stories in an Indo-European language were translated by him, he understandably left dealing with the infamously unique language isolates Hungarian and Finnish to someone else. All this goes to show how much time and effort is behind this # This collection was such a delight to read. A lot of love and thought was put into this by the people at Valancourt and it shows, especially given the fact that editor/publisher James Jenkins translated almost all of the stories here. In fact, all but 1 of the stories in an Indo-European language were translated by him, he understandably left dealing with the infamously unique language isolates Hungarian and Finnish to someone else. All this goes to show how much time and effort is behind this collection. Although not all the stories are a 5 per se, to me the book itself deserves the highest score. I have been looking forward to reading it for quite some time and it did not disappoint in the slightest. My impressions of the individual stories are as follows. Uironda (Italy): In this story, our trucker protagonists drives closer and closer to a strange place that he finds hints and allusions to everywhere he looks, all while his thoughts are invaded by memories and regrets from his personal life. This story was quite good until the climax, which was horrifying and phenomenal. The imagery of the conclusion is alarming and haunting in a way that reminds me of some of Thomas Ligotti's best work. Mater Tenebrarum (Spain): This story takes place in a vague medieval fantasy setting and follows a young witch and a dog as they hunt for forbidden magical objects. This story was incredibly fun to read and filled with colorful detail and action. In many ways it was less horror and more a gothic adventure that is perfect for Halloween. All the Time Remaining (Hungary): In this story, a young boy experiences his beloved stuffed animal changing in inexplicable ways, possibly inspired by his cold, domineering mother. This story was terrifying and easily one of my favorite in the entire collection. It both deftly handles its subject themes of aging, grief, and loss of innocence while providing plenty of genuine horror. The Angle of Horror (Spain): A young girl's brother returns after spending time overseas and she soon notices that he has been irreversibly changed by something beyond her comprehension. I loved this story. Its horror is so ambiguous and commonplace in its nature yet so acute in its power. The Illogical Investigations of Inspector André Despérine (Martinique): When I first read this story's title I tempered my expectations, thinking it would be just another occult detective story which have never really done it for me. I was very pleasantly surprised this was not the case, and I ended up liking it a lot. The story is split into three parts and follows a detective in a small French village, with the last part being the most compelling and unsettling. The Collector (Peru): A man, eagerly traveling across town for a date, finds himself stopped at a isolated gas station filled with strange men. This story was short and simple but wrapped in a certain uneasy, dreamlike quality. I loved it. Señor Ligotti (Mexio): A cash-strapped writer accepts a housing proposition from an intriguing elderly man, but soon comes to regret the too-good-to-be-true arrangement. This story was great and its plot of invasion of personal space and deception is distinctly icky. One of my favorites in the collection. Down, In Their World (Romania): A group of men from an impoverished rural village delve into a cave reputed to be cursed and haunted by strange creatures. With its unique setting and strong folklore elements, I really tried to like this story but I just didn't. Sadly, its pacing just felt off to me. It was one of my least favorites in the collection. Menopause (Ivory Coast): I really loved this story about aging and gender, which was more sci-fi or magic realism than horror. As with so many great sci-fi stories, its puts deciphering the central mystery into the reader's court. It was unique, poignant, and a delight to read. The Bones in Her Eyes (Netherlands): In this story, a good samaritan tries to atone for running over an old lady's cat but finds herself drawn into the woman's strange and sinister world. To me, the plot of this story was quite a bit better than its execution. There were some small details I really loved and one truly creepy scene but I just couldn't get as into the writing style. Twin Shadows (Quebec): This was a fun gothic story narrated by the ignored sibling of a young dancer. Most readers will probably figure out the central mystery pretty early on but it's still an interesting, dark story. Backstairs (Sweden): In this period piece, a young woman visit a psychologist to try to uncover a series of mysterious dreams that have been plaguing her. This is a really well-paced, eerie story, with a conclusion that is appropriately horrific and spine-chilling. Without giving away too much, I think this story is much more original than others that cover a similar subject matter. Pale Toes (Finland): This story blew me away and was my favorite in the entire collection. A vacationing, May-December couple in the doldrums of their relationship receive a strange proposition from an amateur guide to explore an isolated cave. The uneasy relationship dynamics driving the story are reminiscent of Aickman in the best way possible while the conclusion delivers true horror while also holding plenty back. Kira (South Africa): A depressed man visits his childhood home to retreat from personal troubles. I like the vagueness of the story (plus its great dog companion) but it wasn't quite as compelling as most of the other stories. Donation (Denmark): A newly-engaged couple receive a sinister visitor who refuses to leave. This was probably my least favorite story in the entire collection. The concept behind the story is interesting but the delivery falls flat especially in the characters and dialogue. Tiny Women (Ecuador): A short and mysterious story that features a woman clearing out her parents' house and making an unsettling discovery of who they'd been sharing their home with. This story was enigmatic and delightful, I'm now noticing that I really liked all the Spanish-language in the collection. Mechanisms (Catalonia/Spain): This story follows a same-sex couple visiting an abandoned ski resort, one for a photography project the other in a desperate attempt to preserve their souring relationship. I absolutely loved this one. The narrative is constantly shifting between the two characters, giving us an intimate understanding of how each views the 0ther and how their relationship is splitting apart at the seams. The psychological, relationship-oriented approach and deep characterization was wonderfully Aickman-esque and the ultra-ambigious ending preserved such an acute sense of mystery even after I had finished reading. Long, before the true horror starts, there are so many eerie details and odd turns of phrase that contributed to a growing sense of unease. Like some of the other strong stories in this collection, part of Mechanisms' horror comes from its strong themes, which in this case include parenting, manipulation, and misunderstanding. The House of Leuk Dawour (Senegal): In this story, a Paris-educated young woman returning to Dakar and finds that her recent cosmopolitan lifestyle does nothing to protect her from the ancient horrors of home. Highly grounded in folklore, this story was an interesting change of pace from the rest of the collection. The White Cormorant (Norway): A brazen young sailor decides to visit an isolated cliff that he is warned is haunted. This story was unfortunately mediocre and followed a quite formulaic plot, although there were some elegant turns of phrase that I appreciated. All the Birds (The Philippines): A young woman returns to her rural hometown to care for a dying childhood friend and confronts all that has been left unsaid between them. This story didn't stick out to me as much, although I appreciated the interactions between the main characters and the mystery behind the driving supernatural occurrence. Snapshots (Spain): In this story, a man's attempt to get his picture taken at a seemingly faulty photo-booth bring about horrible consequences. This story was short and sweet, although it is quite easy to realize what is going to happen only a few paragraphs in. The setting in a Spanish plaza mayor nostalgically reminded me of my childhood in Spain and was one of the reasons why I liked this story, but without that personal connection the story might not be as strong. All in all, this was an excellent collection that I'd recommend to just about anybody interested in horror or international literature. The stories are so varied in their style and subject matter that there is something for everyone here. Once again, this collection is a huge accomplishment for Valancourt. If they continue this series (which they absolutely should!) it would be great to see more areas of the world covered. Although I'm sure translation could make this difficult (especially considering the amount of translation work done by one the editors himself) I'd love to see more coverage of areas like the Middle East and South/South-East Asia, where tales of the supernatural have a rich, centuries-old heritage.

  9. 4 out of 5

    SpookyBird

    Excellent collection of stories! Each one is quality all around, and certainly there is something for all horror fans to appreciate here. It’s difficult to find a short story collection where even the weakest story is still pretty damn good, but with this one, I found myself enjoying something within each of these. Wonderful job by Valancourt putting this together. A few of the ones I loved specifically are: Uironda - Luigi Musolino Senior Ligotti - Bernardo Esquinca Down, in Their World - Flavius Excellent collection of stories! Each one is quality all around, and certainly there is something for all horror fans to appreciate here. It’s difficult to find a short story collection where even the weakest story is still pretty damn good, but with this one, I found myself enjoying something within each of these. Wonderful job by Valancourt putting this together. A few of the ones I loved specifically are: Uironda - Luigi Musolino Senior Ligotti - Bernardo Esquinca Down, in Their World - Flavius Ardelean The Bones in Her Eyes - Christien Boomsma Pale Toes - Marko Hautala Tiny Women - Solange Rodriguez Pappe Brilliant!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Richelle SheReadsHorror

    A collection of translated horror from around the world. In the introduction, it explains that many great horror stories are missed due to lack of funding for translation in indie presses. So Vallancourt press invested a lot of time and energy to bring the best indie collection of translated horrors. There are so many unique stories in this collection. You could have a favorite teddy bear turn murderous, take exotic trips that could turn out to be the worst idea ever, feel guilty about running o A collection of translated horror from around the world. In the introduction, it explains that many great horror stories are missed due to lack of funding for translation in indie presses. So Vallancourt press invested a lot of time and energy to bring the best indie collection of translated horrors. There are so many unique stories in this collection. You could have a favorite teddy bear turn murderous, take exotic trips that could turn out to be the worst idea ever, feel guilty about running over a cat that will haunt every decision you’ve ever made or even listen to truck drive folklore that turns out to be wild. Indie has always pushed the boundaries which is what I loved much about it. I’m so happy I got to read stories from other parts of the world with this collection and I hope to see more from some of my favorites. Thank you so much to vallancourt press and nightworms for sending me this book for an honest review. #nightwormsbookparty Uirobda by Luigi Musolino (Italy) - Truck driver urban legend. It was emotional at one point then that ending just got so weird! 4 ⭐️ Mater Tenebrarum by Pilar Pedraza “Mother of Darkness” (Spain) - A girl found in a grave wakes and sets off on a mission to find ingredients for a spell. I wasn’t a big fan of this one and was super descriptive that I was losing interest but I did like the ending. 2 ⭐️ This one just didn’t work for me. The Time Remaining by Attila Veres (Hungary) - A little boy and his dying stuffed animal. The end of the childhood era. Toy story gone wrong! 4.5 ⭐️ The Angle of Horror by Christina Fernández Cubas (Spain) - Brother comes home but he’s not right, something is wrong with him. This one messed with my head a little and left me wanting more answers. 4 ⭐️ Down, in Their World by Flavius Ardelean (Romania) - Horror story about fairies and thieves in a steel mine. It was pretty good. 4 ⭐️ The Collector by Tanya Tynjälä (Peru) - Ok, I really loved the simplicity of this story! I wanted to eat it right up! 5 ⭐️ Señor Ligotti by Bernardo Esquinca ( Mexico ) - “If you don’t swing, you don’t ring, like bells.” This one has to be my favorite so far. It was an adrenaline rush to the end. It felt something like The Devil’s Advocate or Misery. 5 ⭐️ I want more from this author! The Illogical Investigations of Inspector André Despérine by Michael Roch (Martinque) - This is a cheesy paranormal police climbing the ranks kinda story with investigations. It wasn’t my type of story but that ending had me laughing a little. 3 ⭐️ Menopause by Flore Hazoumé ( Ivory Coast ) - wow .. what a unique take on menopause 4 ⭐️ The Bones in Her Eyes by Christine Boomsma ( Netherlands ) - Wow, cat scratch fever much. I felt such despair with that ending. 5 ⭐️ Twin Shadows by Ariana Gélinas ( Quebec ) - A forgotten imaginary best friend grows angry. This one was a little weird. I liked the concept but it didn’t work for me. 2 ⭐️ Backstairs by Anders Fager ( Sweden ) - A Victorian style story where a girl has a reoccurring dream. The story didn’t appeal to me but the ending was unexpected. 2 ⭐️ Pale Toes by Marko Hautala ( Finland ) - Tourists always want that high of sight seeing. I’m sorry but I ain’t going in a dark cave. Nope! 4 ⭐️ Kira by Martin Steyn ( South Africa ) - I actually wouldn’t mind a longer version of this story. A cabin by the lake. The lake takes! 5 ⭐️ Donation by Lars Ahn ( Denmark ) - A kid tricks a couple into letting him in their house and he won’t leave. Like what?!!! I actually really loved the couple’s heckling. 5 ⭐️ Tiny Women by Solange Rodríguez Pappe ( Ecuador ) - It’s kind of a weird story. I just found it intriguing. 3 ⭐️ Mechanisms by Elisenda Solsona ( Catalonia ) - Queer couple stays at a hotel next to an abandoned ski resort to take pictures but the locals say there is something back. The ending had me so confused. 2 ⭐️ The house of Leuk Dawour by Bathie Ngoye Thiam ( Senegal ) - folk horror about leuk Dawour. The ending had me feeling like there was more to it than the story let on. 3 ⭐️ The White Cormorant by Frithjof Spalder ( Norway ) - A sailor shipwrecked on an island with Sybil. The ending of this was the best part of the whole story where you have the light go off over your head. 3 ⭐️ All the Birds by Yvette Tan ( Philippines ) - A dying friend and forgotten life. A grief horror that was a little weird at the end but the meaning was understood. 5 ⭐️ Snapshots by José María Latorre ( Spain ) - Something is wrong with this photo booth. This story was ok. I thought this 20th story felt more like an ending story to a collection. 3 ⭐️ 77.5/21= 3.6 ⭐️ rounded to 4 ⭐️

  11. 5 out of 5

    Donnie

    I am so glad this book exists. There is a reason why this book is being selected for a "Storycraft" Spring 2021 course at Butler University - pulling together a diverse and worldwide group of horror writers should be required reading for all genre hounds. It was so interesting to get pulled into the various worlds from dozens of countries all over the world. Creating Horror folklore is such an innately human trait I was just completely fascinated, creeped out, and excited to dive into this colle I am so glad this book exists. There is a reason why this book is being selected for a "Storycraft" Spring 2021 course at Butler University - pulling together a diverse and worldwide group of horror writers should be required reading for all genre hounds. It was so interesting to get pulled into the various worlds from dozens of countries all over the world. Creating Horror folklore is such an innately human trait I was just completely fascinated, creeped out, and excited to dive into this collection. My favorites: Tanya Tynjälä, 'The Collector' (Peru) Attila Veres, 'The Time Remaining' (Hungary) Bernardo Esquinca, 'Señor Ligotti' (Mexico) Christien Boomsma, 'The Bones in Her Eyes' (Netherlands) Solange Rodríguez Pappe, 'Tiny Women' (Ecuador) Bathie Ngoye Thiam, 'The House of Leuk Dawour' (Senegal) Between funding, translating and publishing this collection and reissuing some of the most rare and sought after Paperbacks From Hell, Valancourt forever has my loyalty as a reader. 4 stars. Major thanks to Valancourt and Nightworms for sending me a copy of this book for a #nightwormsbookparty

  12. 4 out of 5

    Bill Hsu

    I enjoyed Veres' "The Time Remaining", Cubas' "The Angle of Horror", Gelinas' "Twin Shadows", and maybe Ahn's "Donation". I doubt that I'll remember the rest. More notes: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/... [2.5 stars, rounded down after a series of less than stellar entries to close the anthology] I enjoyed Veres' "The Time Remaining", Cubas' "The Angle of Horror", Gelinas' "Twin Shadows", and maybe Ahn's "Donation". I doubt that I'll remember the rest. More notes: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/... [2.5 stars, rounded down after a series of less than stellar entries to close the anthology]

  13. 4 out of 5

    Marcy Reads on IG

    There is something so special about international horror, IMO. It just seems a little more creepy and sinister than the “regular” American horror I’m used to reading. I feel like their folklore tends to be darker. It dives into places that I’ve never read before. It gives me the cold chills, but the ones you feel deep in your soul. But there is always something lost in translation. I feel like the majority of the stories suffered because of this. Like we lost some of the feeling and emotions mea There is something so special about international horror, IMO. It just seems a little more creepy and sinister than the “regular” American horror I’m used to reading. I feel like their folklore tends to be darker. It dives into places that I’ve never read before. It gives me the cold chills, but the ones you feel deep in your soul. But there is always something lost in translation. I feel like the majority of the stories suffered because of this. Like we lost some of the feeling and emotions meant to come through in its original language. With that being said there were some stellar stories in this collection. My number one favorite was the first one in the book, UIRONDA. It’s written by an Italian author so I might be a little biased I really felt the main character’s despair. It was just amazing. I’m even contemplating learning more Italian and reading more of his work in its original language. Unfortunately this collection fell under the “I disliked most of the stories” category for me. Either way I’m really excited and curious to see what other international horror stories Valancourt Books releases. Thank you so so much to Valancourt Books and also to Night Worms for my review copy!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Matt (TeamRedmon)

    The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories is an anthology of translated horror from around the world. Valancourt Press now revives old classic horror AND collects and translates some of the best indie horror from around the world. I'm thankful to Valancourt for sending me this book for a #nightwormsbookparty and giving me the opportunity to read these international horror stories. I decided to read this anthology over a period of several weeks instead of back to back. I would pick up the book, The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories is an anthology of translated horror from around the world. Valancourt Press now revives old classic horror AND collects and translates some of the best indie horror from around the world. I'm thankful to Valancourt for sending me this book for a #nightwormsbookparty and giving me the opportunity to read these international horror stories. I decided to read this anthology over a period of several weeks instead of back to back. I would pick up the book, read a story, and set it down for a while. I believe that this greatly increased my overall enjoyment of the collection. Like any anthology, I liked some stories better than others but there were quite a few standouts for me. Señor Ligotti by Bernardo Esquinca (Mexico) The Bones in Her Eyes by Christien Boomsma (Netherlands) All the Birds by Yvette Tan (Philippines) Mechanisms by Elisenda Solsona (Catalonia) The Time Remaining by Attila Veres (Hungary) There is truly something for every fan of horror in this book. No matter the type of horror you love most, you will find something to enjoy in the pages of this excellent anthology.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Nina The Wandering Reader

    Evil faeries, creepy landlords, spiritualistic seances, and superstitions. Whether you’re a fan of international horror or brand new to the terrifying tales that lie beyond your own borders, you’re gonna wanna get your hands on this fantastic collection. As someone who has very recently fallen in love with short stories during these long months in quarantine, this beautiful anthology was a real treat. THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES is an assemblage of chilling tales from nineteen co Evil faeries, creepy landlords, spiritualistic seances, and superstitions. Whether you’re a fan of international horror or brand new to the terrifying tales that lie beyond your own borders, you’re gonna wanna get your hands on this fantastic collection. As someone who has very recently fallen in love with short stories during these long months in quarantine, this beautiful anthology was a real treat. THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF WORLD HORROR STORIES is an assemblage of chilling tales from nineteen countries, translated from thirteen different languages, and packaged in this stunning edition. I really have to commend Valancourt Books for all the work, care, and love that went into this amazing book. There was clearly a mission to focus solely on horror from non-English speaking countries, stories usually only enjoyed by their local audiences and yet to be introduced to readers such as myself. Valancourt really searched the hidden crevices of the globe in order to find these horror gems that varied in style and culture. My personal favorites in this anthology were: The Time Remaining (Hungary) Down, in Their World (Romania) Senor Ligotti (Mexico) The Collector (Peru) The Bones in her Eyes (Netherlands) Donation ( Denmark) Mechanisms (Catalonia) This was an impressive and very much appreciated achievement for editors James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle. The world is vast and I’m eagerly anticipating three or even four more amazing volumes of terror and fright from more countries! I can’t wait! (Special thanks to Valancourt Books and Night Worms for sending this review copy for this #NightWormsBookParty)

  16. 5 out of 5

    J.T. Glover

    An outstanding odyssey through the terrors, folklore, and monsters of countries from around the world. As with Valancourt’s other anthologies, it’s a great combination of stories, with something to please many different readers.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tracey Thompson

    All hail, Valancourt! The fact that this book exists at all is an enormous feat. A collection of fantastic genre authors that have never, or rarely, been published in English. Literally, the best horror authors the world has to offer. As well as the collection of truly amazing stories, the pre-story notes by editors James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle give a fascinating insight into how horror literature is globally regarded. Not every story in the collection is a five-star story, but each contains s All hail, Valancourt! The fact that this book exists at all is an enormous feat. A collection of fantastic genre authors that have never, or rarely, been published in English. Literally, the best horror authors the world has to offer. As well as the collection of truly amazing stories, the pre-story notes by editors James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle give a fascinating insight into how horror literature is globally regarded. Not every story in the collection is a five-star story, but each contains something to enjoy. It is particularly devastating that this book is currently the only place that monolinguists such as myself can currently access the work of these brilliant writers. But the good news is that a call for stories for potential inclusion in volume 2 is currently live. Yay! Here are my favorites stories in the collection: Uironda by Luigi Musolino - A dangerously depressed truck driver, a custody battle, and a mythical destination. I read this a few months before writing this review, and I just flicked through the story to remind myself of the ending. When I remembered, I literally said “Oh GOD!” while quickly closing the book. The Time Remaining by Attila Veres - Why are parents telling their children their stuffed toys are dying? How could you not want to read a horror story about that concept? Senor Ligotti by Bernardo Esquinca - A young couple accept a suspiciously cheap house, on the condition that the previous owner can visit whenever he wants. WHY would anyone agree to that? The ending of this story was so unnerving, I literally squirmed. Down, in Their World - Flavius Ardelean - This may be my favorite in the whole collection. It is so vivid and memorable. A group of men go to ransack an abandoned mine with a dark past. What could possibly go wrong?! Tiny Women by Solange Rodriguez Pappe - Gorgeous little Leonora Carrington-esque story. Mechanisms by Elisenda Solsona - A feuding couple visit an abandoned ski resort to capture the perfect photo. I thought I knew how this story was end. I was oh so very wrong. The White Cormorant by Frithjof Spalder - Don’t let all the nautical terminology put you off. This clever, hypnotic tale will stay with you.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Joseph

    Valancourt has just added to its impressive catalogue what might well be the jewel in its (Gothic) crown: "The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories". In this veritable labour of love, editors (and Valancourt founders) James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle have combed through stories in a myriad of languages to come up with a selection of twenty-one contemporary horror stories from around the world, all of which are being published in English for the first time ever. Choosing the stories must have b Valancourt has just added to its impressive catalogue what might well be the jewel in its (Gothic) crown: "The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories". In this veritable labour of love, editors (and Valancourt founders) James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle have combed through stories in a myriad of languages to come up with a selection of twenty-one contemporary horror stories from around the world, all of which are being published in English for the first time ever. Choosing the stories must have been a mammoth task. What is even more remarkable is that Jenkins prepared most of the translations himself. Having a command of so many languages is an achievement – but what is even more impressive is that these are no workaday renditions, but readable, fluent translations into English which manage to retain the different narrative voices and styles of the original. How to start reviewing such a wealth of remarkable stories? I will not even attempt to do so but will simply list some reasons why you should check out this anthology. 1. Although some of the featured authors are very well-known in their respective countries, they are hardly household names in the English-speaking world. The lover of horror stories seeking new voices from outside the established English-language canon will find plenty to discover here. 2. The authors who make an appearance in this anthology are not “different” just because they are little-known, but because they genuinely bring something new to the horror genre. More often than not, their stories reflects folklore which will be unfamiliar to most readers. To cite just a couple of examples, Yvette Tan’s All the Birds incorporates elements from Filipino mythology and folklore, while Bathie Ngoye Thiam’s The House of Leuk Dawour taps into Senegal’s long tradition of supernatural storytelling. Down, in their World by Flavius Ardelean revives the scarier aspects of Romanian folklore. 3. Even when not directly inspired by local myths, many of the stories reflect aspects, landscapes and issues of the authors’ countries of origin. Menopause by Flore Hazoumé, for instance, provides social commentary on African society’s approach to womenhood whereas Luigi Musolino’s Uironda – a strong opener to this anthology – evokes the dreary highways of Northern Italy’s industrial hinterland. 4. Diversity and variety are two key characteristics of this anthology. As the editors explain in their foreword, they aimed to ensure a high rate of inclusion of women writers, authors of colour, and LGBT-interest material. This is no mere tip of the hat to political correctness but a genuine desire to make this anthology as inclusive as possible. And, ultimately, this is reflected in the sheer literary variety found between the book’s covers. Certainly, all the featured stories qualify as horror. But this is a broad church indeed. Just come inside and take your seat in your favourite aisle – whether the horror you love is psychological and Aickman-like, Lovecraftian (cosmic or reptilian), gory, surreal, or tinged with crime, folklore or comedy… you’ll find something for you. 5. The best reason to savour this anthology however is the quality of the writing. Judging from the reviews I’ve read, the horror community is showing this anthology well-deserved love. But this should honestly be more than a “niche interest” collection – this is great contemporary world literature, independently of its genre. Here’s the roll call of stories: Pilar Pedraza, 'Mater Tenebrarum' (Spain) Flavius Ardelean, 'Down, in Their World' (Romania) Anders Fager, 'Backstairs' (Sweden) Tanya Tynjälä, 'The Collector' (Peru) Frithjof Spalder, 'The White Cormorant' (Norway) Jose María Latorre, 'Snapshots' (Spain) Luigi Musolino, 'Uironda' (Italy) Martin Steyn, 'Kira' (South Africa) Attila Veres, 'The Time Remaining' (Hungary) Lars Ahn, 'Donation' (Denmark) Bernardo Esquinca, 'Señor Ligotti' (Mexico) Cristina Fernández Cubas, 'The Angle of Horror' (Spain) Christien Boomsma, 'The Bones in Her Eyes' (Netherlands) Elisenda Solsona, 'Mechanisms' (Catalonia) Michael Roch, 'The Illogical Investigations of Inspector André Despérine' (Martinique) Solange Rodríguez Pappe, 'Tiny Women' (Ecuador) Bathie Ngoye Thiam, 'The House of Leuk Dawour' (Senegal) Marko Hautala, 'Pale Toes' (Finland) Yvette Tan, 'All the Birds' (Philippines) Ariane Gélinas, 'Twin Shadows' (Québec) Flore Hazoumé, 'Menopause' (Ivory Coast) Tantalizingly, The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories bears the subtitle “Volume 1”. The editors have announced on social media that they’re already working on the next instalment in what promises to be another great series from Valancourt. Bring them on! https://endsoftheword.blogspot.com/20...

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ashley (spookishmommy)

    First of all, what a labor of love! The amount of time, love and effort put into this anthology can be FELT in each page. High praise to James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle for putting this together. Each story is translated from a non English speaking language from countries all over the world! Wow, being able to experience horror in other countries was magical. I love the dark, melancholic feel of the collection as a whole. Every story transported me somewhere new and I enjoyed the ride. If you're l First of all, what a labor of love! The amount of time, love and effort put into this anthology can be FELT in each page. High praise to James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle for putting this together. Each story is translated from a non English speaking language from countries all over the world! Wow, being able to experience horror in other countries was magical. I love the dark, melancholic feel of the collection as a whole. Every story transported me somewhere new and I enjoyed the ride. If you're looking for jump scare, gory horror, you won't find that here. Instead, I'd describe these stories as beautiful and enchanting taking you on a journey to experience horror in faraway places.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth Engstrom

    Every story in this volume is a marvel. The editors did a superb job in choosing, and then translating exquisitely written stories from around the world. Highest recommendation for this outstanding collection.

  21. 4 out of 5

    David Taffner

    This was one of my most anticipated reads this year and it far exceeded my expectations. A truly impressive amount of work has gone into this volume of horror stories from around the world - the selections, translations, and sequencing are all perfect. This is the rare collection where every story is excellent but there were some particular standouts: "The Time Remaining" from Hungary which centers on the life and death of children's toys; "Twin Shadow" from Quebec, about the bond between sister This was one of my most anticipated reads this year and it far exceeded my expectations. A truly impressive amount of work has gone into this volume of horror stories from around the world - the selections, translations, and sequencing are all perfect. This is the rare collection where every story is excellent but there were some particular standouts: "The Time Remaining" from Hungary which centers on the life and death of children's toys; "Twin Shadow" from Quebec, about the bond between sisters; "Backstairs" from Sweden, which hilariously and horrifyingly details the reasons behind and the treatments for female hysteria; and "Kira", a creepy little ghost story from South Africa that has a very good dog in it.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Christi Nogle

    Loved this! Full and varied anthology of horror stories in translation. I enjoyed all of the stories, but a few favorites were "Uironda" by Luigi Mussolini, "The Time Remaining" by Attila Veres, "The Illogical Investigations of Inspector Andre Desperine" by Michael Roch, and "Backstairs" by Anders Fager. Loved this! Full and varied anthology of horror stories in translation. I enjoyed all of the stories, but a few favorites were "Uironda" by Luigi Mussolini, "The Time Remaining" by Attila Veres, "The Illogical Investigations of Inspector Andre Desperine" by Michael Roch, and "Backstairs" by Anders Fager.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Becky Spratford

    Review in the October 2020 issue of Library Journal Three Words That Describe this Book: translation, meticulously researched, wide range of scares Draft Review: Known for their updated editions of classic horror stories, editors Jenkins and Cagle have taken on a new mission, collecting contemporary, acclaimed horror authors from around the world, translating may of them into English for the first time, adding a short introduction to each story in order to place them a context to be best enjoyed by Review in the October 2020 issue of Library Journal Three Words That Describe this Book: translation, meticulously researched, wide range of scares Draft Review: Known for their updated editions of classic horror stories, editors Jenkins and Cagle have taken on a new mission, collecting contemporary, acclaimed horror authors from around the world, translating may of them into English for the first time, adding a short introduction to each story in order to place them a context to be best enjoyed by a new, wider audience. This collection is stellar from top to bottom, but standouts include Christien Boomsma [Netherlands] with a nightmarish story of guilt spiraling out of control, and Bathie Ngoye Thiam [Senegal] who brings the rab [evil spirits] from his country’s oral history tradition to the page, terrifying readers near and far. Verdict: This desperately needed anthology is meticulously researched and translated, offering stories from a variety of perspectives across five continents, and representing the broad range of storytelling styles and tropes that are used by all horror storytellers regardless of nationality. Readers will be clamoring for these fresh tales by current authors they probably didn’t know existed. Consider pairing it with A WORLD OF HORROR edited by Eric Guignard.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Alex | | findingmontauk1

    Valancourt Books never ceases to amaze me and this company is always doing new things. With this anthology, they have looked all over the world, reading horror works from dozens of countries in close to twenty languages in order to find incredible and underrepresented contemporary international and translated horror stories. WHAT?? There was no way to say no to this one! If you are unsure where to begin in your horror journey, this anthology will bring you some stories from all over the world wit Valancourt Books never ceases to amaze me and this company is always doing new things. With this anthology, they have looked all over the world, reading horror works from dozens of countries in close to twenty languages in order to find incredible and underrepresented contemporary international and translated horror stories. WHAT?? There was no way to say no to this one! If you are unsure where to begin in your horror journey, this anthology will bring you some stories from all over the world without having to put on a mask or leave your house to experience. As true with most collections and anthologies, not every story is a 5 star smash hit... but that does not mean that each story did not unnerve me, bother me, or scare me in one way or another with varying degrees. You can expect to be entertained by every story in these pages for sure! The Time Remaining by Attila Veres (from Hungary) is my absolute favorite here... it was so so good! I need more just like this! I also LOVED All the Birds by Yvette Tan (from Philippines) as I am a huge grief horror fan lately. Both of these stories are 5 stars and worth this anthology alone in my opinion. Fans of international horror or literature will eat these stories up and I definitely recommend this for yourself or to gift to others! Just think of ALL the horror stories around the world we still have no concept of... and all the new scares that await! 4 stars! Special thanks to Valancourt Books and Night Worms for sending this review copy for another #NightWormsBookParty

  25. 4 out of 5

    John Lynch

    Horror isn’t exclusive to one country, one language, or one culture. It’s world wide. No matter where you’re from, you may have been exposed to a few pieces of horror from other countries, but I’d be willing to be that even if you’ve read translated works, the average reader isn’t doing so with much frequency. That’s where valencourt books comes in. They’ve scoured the globe to bring you translations of horror stories from all over there world. There is something for everyone from every corner of Horror isn’t exclusive to one country, one language, or one culture. It’s world wide. No matter where you’re from, you may have been exposed to a few pieces of horror from other countries, but I’d be willing to be that even if you’ve read translated works, the average reader isn’t doing so with much frequency. That’s where valencourt books comes in. They’ve scoured the globe to bring you translations of horror stories from all over there world. There is something for everyone from every corner of the globe within this book, and it’s very likely that this is the first time you’ll read something by most, if not all of the authors in this book. The premise is there, but the question to be asked is “Did the editors find GOOD stories. Stories worth sharing with others?” I believe they did, and this is a worthy entry in any horror fans anthology collection. A few of the standouts for me were “All the birds” by Yvette Tan (Philippines) Señor Ligotti by Bernardo Esquinca (Mexico) The Bones in Her Eyes by Christien Boomsma There really is something for everyone here. The book is labeled as volume one, and I really hope that Valancourt continues with this excellent premise, and that the execution can remain top notch. PICK THIS ONE UP

  26. 4 out of 5

    Eva

    Michael Kelly’s qualification of The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Volume One as ‘a triumph’ is no exaggeration. The quality of the stories as well as their translations, the editorial care, the design, the concept of presenting horror stories from outside of the Anglo bubble: I hugely enjoyed my time with this book. Each of the stories is highly accomplished at the language level, which must necessarily say something about both the translations and the original versions. At the plot l Michael Kelly’s qualification of The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Volume One as ‘a triumph’ is no exaggeration. The quality of the stories as well as their translations, the editorial care, the design, the concept of presenting horror stories from outside of the Anglo bubble: I hugely enjoyed my time with this book. Each of the stories is highly accomplished at the language level, which must necessarily say something about both the translations and the original versions. At the plot level I found most stories highly accomplished, and a few less so – but there are no real ‘stinkers’. My very favourite stories in this anthology are ‘Señor Ligotti’ by the Mexican Bernardo Esquinca (a story about a demanding visitor and an allegory of writer’s block), ‘Twin Shadows’ by the French Canadian Ariane Gélinas (a tale of two sisters, told from an interesting perspective) and ‘Pale Toes’ by the Finnish Marko Hautala (a story about cave exploration that reminded me of the Ted the Caver creepypasta). My favourite sentence in the book, from ‘Pale Toes’: ‘The blinking eyes of long-dead stars and a wind that blew around the shreds of torn birthday cards.’

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ben Long

    I have to applaud the editors at Valancourt for the immense time and effort it must have taken to not only comb the globe for great stories, but to also translate them for this book. The magnitude of such an endeavor is overwhelming to me. Luckily it was all worth it as this is a fantastic collection of horrifying short stories from around the world! The stories vary widely in their plots and the type of horror they contain, so there is truly something for everyone here. It was exciting reading t I have to applaud the editors at Valancourt for the immense time and effort it must have taken to not only comb the globe for great stories, but to also translate them for this book. The magnitude of such an endeavor is overwhelming to me. Luckily it was all worth it as this is a fantastic collection of horrifying short stories from around the world! The stories vary widely in their plots and the type of horror they contain, so there is truly something for everyone here. It was exciting reading this collection as each new story also introduced me to a new author, many of whom I would love to read more from. As with all anthologies there are hits and misses, but overall this is a solid group of entertaining and terrifying tales!! Some stand outs for me are: “Mater Tenebrarum” by Pilar Pedraza (Spain) “The Time Remaining” by Attila Veres (Hungary) “Señor Ligotti” by Bernardo Esquinca (Mexico) “The Bones in Her Eyes” by Christien Boomsma (Netherlands) “All the Birds” by Yvette Tan (Philippines)

  28. 4 out of 5

    Brian Cohen

    I love Valancourt and so, rather than rating a 4 for what I’d say is a 4.5, I’ll give them a bump. The stories are all great and it’s fascinating to read selections from around the world, but it just didn’t seem like horror was the right label for two or three of them. On the other hand, a few were among the scariest I’ve ever read. Looking forward to the next volume.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Skjam!

    As has been mentioned in reviews on my blog before, there is a lot of literature from around the world published every year that English-only folks never get to read because it’s in other languages and there is only so much translation going on. This can create a false impression that other countries don’t have their own tradition of say, horror stories. This volume is meant to bring some of those horror stories to English-only readers from around the world, concentrating on stories that have no As has been mentioned in reviews on my blog before, there is a lot of literature from around the world published every year that English-only folks never get to read because it’s in other languages and there is only so much translation going on. This can create a false impression that other countries don’t have their own tradition of say, horror stories. This volume is meant to bring some of those horror stories to English-only readers from around the world, concentrating on stories that have not been professionally published in English before that the publishers were able to get translated affordably. The twenty-one stories begin with “Uironda” by Luigi Musolino, an Italian tale about a trucker who hears about a possibly mythical destination that only the doomed can find. And sure enough, the turnoff to Uironda appears, but what he finds there may be only what he carries with him in the first place. The final story is “Snapshots” by Jose Maria Latorre, a Spanish tale about a photo booth where the photographs don’t show the person sitting inside. Or do they? Spain is perhaps over represented, with three stories plus one from Catalonia which is geographically inside Spain but linguistically distinctive. Most of the stories are recent, with 2020’s “Señor Ligotti” by Bernardo Esquina of Mexico appearing in this collection first, before the official Mexican release. (It’s about an author who makes a bad deal to get a good apartment.) But there are a couple of older tales, with the eldest being 1971’s “The White Cormorant” by Frithjof Spalder of Norway. (A sailor decides to navigate a particularly dangerous route.) I especially liked a couple of the stories that are based on local folklore. “Down, In Their World” by Flavius Ardelean has starving Romanians go into an abandoned mine to scavenge the old rails for metal to sell, but they’re not the only ones who are starving. “The House of Leuk Dawour” by Bathie Ngoye Thiam takes place in Senegal as a young woman defends herself against an evil spirit. She survives, but at what cost? My least favorite story was “Donation” by Lars Ahn of Denmark. An engaged couple lets in a little boy who’s collecting, but it’s not quite clear what it is he’s collecting for. I found it tedious rather than suspenseful and wound up skimming. Content note: body horror, harm to children, suicide, rape. Overall: An interesting collection that shows there’s much to be found if you go looking–there is now a second volume as well. Recommended to horror fans who’d like to branch out a bit…and if you read more than one language, you might find a new favorite author!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Karen Kohoutek

    I'm a huge fan of Valancourt Books, but I usually don't read their more contemporary offerings, since I just rarely read contemporary fiction (with a few notable exceptions: there was some good stuff this year!). I also find short stories a bit of a challenge, after the Edwardian age or so. This really intrigued me, though, and I pre-ordered it, hoping for the best. And lo! I really liked it. The writers, mostly ones that have been rarely, if at all, translated into English, have all kinds of un I'm a huge fan of Valancourt Books, but I usually don't read their more contemporary offerings, since I just rarely read contemporary fiction (with a few notable exceptions: there was some good stuff this year!). I also find short stories a bit of a challenge, after the Edwardian age or so. This really intrigued me, though, and I pre-ordered it, hoping for the best. And lo! I really liked it. The writers, mostly ones that have been rarely, if at all, translated into English, have all kinds of unique spins on the genre, and a wide variety of settings, time periods, and types of characters. All of that makes it feel much fresher, and the genre full of possibility. As a bonus, there's introductory material about the authors, and the horror writing in their countries. There are more books planned in the series -- the next is horror fiction in endangered languages -- and I'll be pre-ordering them too when the time comes!

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