One of the best gifts I received this Christmas was Best New Horror 25 (for the year 2013) edited by Stephen Jones. I consider this book a must-have for any serious horror aficionado.
In addition to having 21 stories by such icons as Clive Barker, Ramsey Campbell, and Neil Gaiman (among others), Mr. Jones provides a ninety page synopsis of horror in 2013, a “necrology” (list of those having died) in 2013, and a list of useful addresses for the horrorphile of small press publishers, websites, organizations, and magazines.
I had not heard of Mr. Jones before receiving this book, but the biography the book provides shows him to a well-respected editor of horror in many genres and a recipient of many awards, some a few times over, including the Bram Stoker Award, Horror Guild awards, British Fantasy awards, and other. For those desiring more background on Mr. Jones, please visit his website at http://www.stephenjoneseditor.com.
Of course, I have not had the time in the past two days to start reading this volume in any depth, but I have skimmed through it and found it to be very informative. As you who follow my blog can guess, I love the ninety-page intro, because it gives a thorough overview of what happened in 2013 from something of a historian’s viewpoint.
The only downside I have found, so far, is that the Necrology includes several non-horror entertainers and figures, which are superfluous to the work’s theme. For example, Mr. Jones mentions the death of Annette Funicello, who, so far as I know, was never in a horror film. If anyone knows of a horror film she was in, please let me know so that I can post an apology to Mr. Jones.
This 592-page volume is a welcome addition to my horror library and I look forward to exploring it in great depth as it will help me catch up on the current state of affairs in horror (which some of you no doubt know that I seriously need as I tend to focus on classic horror of the 20th and 19th centuries). I recommend this book to anyone else who has a serious desire to survey the current state of the art.
For a detailed review of the book, visit either the Amazon.com article or visit http://www.locusmag.com/Reviews/2014/09/stefan-dzaimianowicz-reviews-stephen-jones-best-new-horror-25/.