Tales From the Graveyard: The Complete Collection

Tales From the Graveyard: The Complete Collection - Susan Shultz

I was hoping for a bit more here.


Most of it wasn't truly terrible, but the writing was oddly basic (quick, short sentences, often starting with the same word but without ever managing a rhythm) and the scares just weren't there. I was occasionally horrified, but never scared. It just wasn't creepy, for a collection of stories that centered around a graveyard and ghosts and dead people and murderers.


I've certainly let that sort of thing go before, though. If the storyline is interesting enough and the characters are intriguing enough, I don't need to be scared, even when scares were promised.


The problem here, though, is that this is a bit of a mess in regards to that. The characters were never really more than lightly drawn. I could tell I was supposed to feel something for them, but I didn't quite manage it because they weren't quite real for me. Their actions and reactions appeared to have no logic behind them, even the logic existent in someone insane (and many of these characters were certainly insane as we understand it).


Each individual story connects to the whole, but stands alone as a story as well. The problem is that they are all just a little cliché. We have a murderer, we have a sad, abused wife, we have a crazy reporter (and am I the only one who was not quite sure what I was supposed to take from the end of that story?), we have a crazy guy. Each story starts and ends without really resolving anything. I don't feel like I have the background that might have been intriguing, since something weird is going on in the background. I don't feel like the stories themselves are really interesting. They feel pretty basic, and I know going in how they are going to end without actually being excited to get there.


And the poetry. Now, I fully admit I'm not a fan of poetry. I'm just not. I never really have been, and it takes an awful lot to make me appreciate it. This is not something I am ever going to appreciate. It reads like the sort of stuff a friend of mine (and probably a friend of everyone who is reading this, because everyone has that friend) attempted to write in high school--attempts at gothic romance/horror with a focus on death and a simple rhyming scheme. It pops up at random intervals and just makes me miserable until it goes away again. There are also bits and pieces of more established poets, which is probably supposed to lend the book a poetic air but just makes the rest of the poetry look worse in comparison.


I was hoping for some quick scares and some interesting, creepy backstory. I get the feeling that there is something interesting going on here, somewhere, but that was not what I got to read, and what I did read was not enjoyable enough to make up for that loss.


This book was provided to me for free by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.