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Perfect Fear: Four Tales of Terror Paperback – July 5, 2012
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Academy Award-Winning Producer/Director
The Masque of the Red Death, The Pit and the Pendulum, Little Shop of Horrors
"As a filmmaker, it's really exciting to read stories that are cinematic in scope and style. I loved Perfect Fear. Richard Poe has tapped into real primal fears that we all experience -- including some of my own childhood fears!"
Chief Operating Officer, The Asylum
Producer, Sharknado, Sharknado 2, Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus
"The stories in Perfect Fear are riveting and really kept me on edge. Bravo to Richard Poe. Very good stuff."
--CONSTANTINE MAKRIS, director,
Orange is the New Black, Warehouse 13, Law and Order
"Moves with cinematographic speed... abundant outpourings of blood... bitterly funny..."
--NINA ZIVANCEVIC, author of
Death of New York City, Inside & Out of Byzantium, Living on Air
About the Author
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
1- Scotophobia -- A neat little tale about being afraid of the dark, actually, afraid of your fears. The main couple quite accidentally find a 'stairwell' to terror and things that go bump in the night. You care about them and want to see how this one is going to end for them. That's good writing.
2- The Strange, White Room -- Basically a tale of giving up one's soul in a way that was never imagined. Great writing but it is not a "feel good" story.
3- Don't Come Back, Mommy -- This is the tale of a young boy that witnesses his mother's supposedly accidental drowning at sea. The child seems to be afraid of everything and of course, those fears lead to him facing the worst of his fears. Interesting tale.
4- The She-Wasp -- This is one that will leave you a little squeamish especially if you're not all that fond of bugs and it is all about the bugs, wasps in particular! Gives me the willies---
I actually bought this Kindle edition book for two reasons. First, it was my very first Kindle book and I wanted to see if I would like it as opposed to having a 'real' book in my hands, which I do and it is written by Richard Poe, a native of Syracuse, NY as I am.
He is a journalist, commentator and a New York Times Bestselling author. Up until this book, all of his other works have been non-fiction. This intrigued me.
The book is loaded with, "bonus content", so we are told by the author. Apparently we will be seeing more and more of this in our books. I read the forward, preface, epilogue, prolog and so on. Very interesting material and it is all filled with interesting information, alot to do with New York State and therefore, the stories in it.Read more ›
We've got a 3 page Author's Forenote, a 5 page Forward, a 6 page Preface, an 8 page Epilogue, and a 26 page 'Conversation with Richard Poe'. That leaves us with only a scant 81 pages of stories.
Hardly enough material to justify a book.
Most of the stories read like horror foreplay; they end just when they should get going.
The stories seem to veer off course, taking us in one direction then another. Don't get me wrong, surprise is good in a horror story. In fact, it's essential for a good scare. That isn't happening here.
In "Scotophobia" we aren't given information in the proper fashion. We should learn that our protagonist (who's afraid of the dark) is studying to be an archeologist BEFORE a falling cabinet creates a gaping hole in his kitchen wall, exposing a dark stone stairway beyond.
I also can't imagine that his wife - who woke up screaming because she felt a cockroach on her leg - would follow him down those dark, foreboding stairs at three o'clock in the morning.
"The Strange White Room" is a tepid little piece. More an examination of the perils of amoral technology than the fear of an endless, purposeless life.
[Spoiler Alert] Why does mommy come back in "Don't come back, Mommy"? There was apparently no foul play suspected in her death. Only suspicions. No history of animosity with her husband. No fights. No threats. No one seems to miss her. And no one wished her back. The imagery at play reminds me a great deal of George Romero's "Creepshow".
"The She-Wasp" actually has a happy ending.
Sorry, but the stories just aren't personal enough.
We need more than just "Hey, here's a type of fear".
These stories barely scratch the surface.
C'mon, Mr. Poe, open up a vein. Bleed on the paper.
We'll love you for it.