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Shock Totem 4.5: Holiday Tales of the Macabre and Twisted - Christmas 2011 [Kindle Edition]

Shock Totem , K. Allen Wood , Kevin J. Anderson , Mercedes M. Yardley , Robert J. Duperre , Mark Allan Gunnells , Lee Thompson , Jennifer Pelland , Jack Ketchum
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $2.99
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  • Length: 168 pages
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Book Description

This special holiday issue of Shock Totem features an eclectic mix of holiday-inspired horror from K. Allen Wood, Mercedes M. Yardley, Kevin J. Anderson, Robert J. Duperre and more. Also anecdotal holiday recollections from Jack Ketchum, Jennifer Pelland, Mark Allen Gunnells, Nick Cato, and a host of others.

Celebrate the holidays with Shock Totem!

Editorial Reviews


"The stories in Holiday Tales of the Macabre and Twisted make Silent Night, Deadly Night look approximately as gritty as The Muppets Take Manhattan." --Shroud Magazine

About the Author

Shock Totem is an American literary journal specializing in dark fantasy and horror. The debut issue was published on July 1, 2009. The publication's main goal is to promote and support new and established authors by focusing primarily on fiction, but also through nonfiction articles and interviews (called "conversations").

Product Details

  • File Size: 1319 KB
  • Print Length: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Shock Totem Publications (December 20, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00695SL8I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #603,202 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Holiday horrors & macabre memories June 22, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This issue of Shock Totem brings together eight short stories, as well as eleven short trips down memory lane with various authors sharing their Christmas memories--twisted and macabre as they might be. It starts off with a story by Mercedes M. Yardley called "Heartless" that is just all the way disturbing, about a heartbroken woman who finds a demon in her bed and she is too lonely to wish it away.

K. Allen Wood's "Streamer of Silver, Ribbon of Red" is a story that starts off with a sinister sense of humor. I mean, the villain is a homicidal clown dressed up as Santa--come on. The story plays out through the clown's point of view, which I had my doubts about, but as it played out it became clear that the story just wouldn't work any other way. And the payoff had a mischievous Hitchcock feel to it.

My favorite story is a relatively short piece called "Tinsel" by John Boden. I'll simply sum up my thoughts on this tale by saying stories of loss and loneliness don't always resonate as well as this one. Well done.

There's a couple other stories that offer some snow-dappled scares like Kevin J Anderson's "Santa Claus Is Coming to Get You!" and Robert J. Duperre's "One Good Turn." As for the holiday memories, they were like bonus interludes between the stories. Jennifer Pelland's had one of those childhood memories that echoes something from my past, while I'd say Mark Allen Gunnells had one of the more charming stories.

Honestly, I would have been perfectly happy to trade the memories from more fiction, but I'm not complaining. It's a nice slice of holiday hellscape wrapped with a pretty red ribbon--and dripping with blood. Happy holidays!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Holiday Dark and Twisted April 2, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is my third Shock Totem read. I picked them up last year on a giveaway and they kinda hang out on my kindle amounst many others I have not got a chance to read. In this issue Jack Ketcum makes an appearance with a poem we wrote on Christmas Day 1969. Below is my favorites with a small review.

Yardley writes a christmas ghost story. After losing her husband a young woman is morning the lost. Losing weight but by her side a figure with no heart beat but it feels like the love of her husband. Find out who she is cuddling with in this creepy whimsical horror. 3.5 Stars

K Allen Wood tells a tale of a clown dressed in a Santa outfit. Trying to gain a fortune with failed attempts for his Christmas holiday. Another reason why kids are afraid of CLOWNS! 5 Stars

Kevin Anderson gives us milk and cookies to die for. With a spooky tale told by an older brother to his younger brother. Santa only comes for the bad kids. 5 Stars.

Robert Duperre brings the Christmas feast to the table with a like father like son tale. But Dorian gets the unwanted unwrapping. A great twist. 4 stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I don't tend to go for holiday themed anything, but being a big fan of Shock Totem already I decided to give this a whirl. I am so glad that I did. The whole issue is a stand out, but in particular, Mercedes Murdock Yardley's story is brilliant and if John Boden's "Tinsel" doesn't break your heart, then you don't have one! Seriously. It's heart-breaking. Also, if you hate clowns as much as I do (and I really, REALLY HATE CLOWNS!), you're going to love K. Allen Wood's "Streamer of Silver, Ribbon of Red." That's a guarantee. More quality work from the team at Shock Totem.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Volume of Sublime Malevolence December 17, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Culturally, we tend to adopt a dualist approach to the holiday season, bookending our naughty/nice deliberations between those representative yin-yang extremes of the color spectrum, Black Friday and White Christmas. Perhaps this is the kind of simplicity we need to get through the Exodus-rivaling travel, wallet-flogging, and family intrigue, not to mention all the trite, overdone bitching over department store Christmas muzak casually rattled off ad nauseam--as if buying toilet paper to the strains of Kelly Clarkson's latest breakup anthem back in October had been some kind of transcendental, edifying experience! Which is to say, amidst yuletide chaos tradition is employed as a small oasis, and we seize upon it for whatever serenity it can offer us.

Now imagine you're standing next to the tinsel-festooned tree in your mother's living room, nursing a second eggnog and wondering how long you can resist those Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer sugar cookies. The Burl Ives is on repeat and you're smiling and nodding even though you haven't picked up a goddamned word Uncle Ralph has been laying down lo these last forty-five minutes.

Screw it, you say to yourself, Rudolph can light the way down my esophagus for him and his whole gang.

Ralphie finally pauses to take a breath and you make an escape speedy enough to rival those epicene teenage vampires that are all the rage these days. You've almost reached the dessert spread when the sound of breaking glass stops you in your tracks. A fat man in a crimson suit lined with white fur waves jollily through a shattered windowpane then thrusts an industrial sized nozzle into the room.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars FAB
Fab Book!! Loved all the stories!
Published 3 months ago by Theresa
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy or die!
Do yourselves a favour, buy this and others whilst it is this cheap. Great read always. Never disappointed with Shock Totem releases. Top shelf.
Published 5 months ago by Adrian Shotbolt
5.0 out of 5 stars Bought Em' All!!!
You can see my reviews of "Shock Totem" are all 5 star reviews. I bought and read the first issue.. Read more
Published 14 months ago by April Alexander-Peck
5.0 out of 5 stars Yet another quality ST release
I originally purchased this in the digital download format but had to get the physical copy when it became available. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Chonzo
4.0 out of 5 stars Holiday fun
The only downside to this Holiday Special issue of Shock Totem is that it is a digital release only. I would have prefered a physical copy. Read more
Published on April 9, 2013 by Kurt M. SljÊringrud
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Stories!
If you like horror fiction, then this publication needs to be on your "must read" list. Every issue is packed full of fabulous stories written by very talented authors.
Published on December 12, 2011 by S. Nycole Laff
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for any horror lover!
You wouldn't think you would be able to combine horror and the Holidays but I guess that is what makes it "Twisted". This is a must read for any horror reader. Read more
Published on December 3, 2011 by C. Fountain
5.0 out of 5 stars A holiday treat
This is full of holiday-inspired dark fiction and true-life tales. I've read - and been impressed by - a couple of Shock Totem's previous publications, so I guessed the quality of... Read more
Published on November 21, 2011 by Becs
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