- Release Date: August 2012
- Author: Christopher Conlon
- Publisher: Bad Moon Books
- Page Count: 139 pages
A briefcase containing nothing but papers inexplicably starts to drip blood. A man is visited in the middle of the night by the Chairman of the Board of Insomnia. A young girl discovers that she can read minds—but only the minds of the dead. Herding Ravens brings together some two dozen of Christopher Conlon’s “bon-bons”—tasty samples of flash fiction in which anything can happen, and usually does. Inspired by everything from Edgar Allan Poe to Franz Kafka, from Charles Addams to The Twilight Zone, these surreal fantasies operate with, as the author writes, “no rules or logic, or with dream logic, or the logic of the grave.” By turns haunting and hilarious, Herding Ravens is a walk on the weird side you won’t soon forget.
Cover Art: John Pierro
Internal illustrations for each story: Daryl Earnest
- The Numbers
- Blood Morning
- The Dead of G—-
- The Part In Question
- The Raven 2
- Cold Cut #1: Christmas Night
- A Truthful Report Concerning the Recent Events at Serpent’s Hill
- The Town Elders
- Night Of The New Tears
- I, Ringo
- Cold Cut #2: Need
- Beard vs Beard
- The Double’s Double
- Say Cheese?
- Time Flies
- Political Poem
- In The Ice House
- Protection (A Masque For Two Characters)
- Cold Cut #3: A Cup Of Coffee
- The Chairman Comes To Call
- The Death of the Most Beautiful Woman in the World
- How To Live If Not Why
- The Mind Reader Of The Dead
- Wild Radish
- An End
I have long been an admirer of Mr. Conlon’s stories, his three published novels are among the best dark fiction has to offer.
To say that this short story collection took me by surprise would be an understatement. I had an idea in my head of what a group of Christopher Conlon short stories would be like. Of course this assumption was based on his brilliant novels and what I found was something completely different but no less brilliant.
This is a totally insane group of tales that can’t really be pigeon-holed into a genre except for the fact that they could be all considered flash fiction.
There wasn’t a weak story in this collection and I really liked them all. Here a few of my personal favorites.
The Numbers: A perfect tale to start off this collection. Reminiscent of The Scarlet Letter, but not in any way you could imagine until you read this delicious little tale.
Cold Cut #1: Christmas Night; My personal favorite in this collection. Christmas night, a depressed woman sits atop a guard rail over a high bridge. A man finds her, could this be her saviour?
Succubus: The female demon of myth presented as only Mr. Conlon could.
The Double’s Double: This one will make your head spin.
If you are looking for a great collection of short tales that know no bounds and cannot be constrained by the usual genre trappings, this book is for you and I highly recommend it.