DARK LOVE by Nancy A. Collins


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 Twenty-two delvings into horror, lust, madness, flying blood, and defiled flesh. Anthologists Collins (the paperback Wild Blood, etc.), Kramer, and Greenberg kick off their album of original tales with Stephen King's delightful study in grisliness, ``Lunch at the Gotham Cafe''about a broker whose wife has left him and who meets her and her therapist in a Manhattan eatery for lunch and talk; there, the three are mistaken by a nutty mÉitre d' as the people whose dog keeps him awake all night, following which the bedeviled fellow goes berserk, pulls out a butcher knife and works them over. The spillage climaxes wryly as the wife fails to mellow, though her husband has saved her life. The late Michael O'Donoghue follows with his smiley little filmscript about ``The Psycho'' who gets up in the morning, goes out and kills broadly, then returns to bed after a hard day's work as his victims one by one arise from death, this, after all, being Valentine's Day. Kathy Koja's ``Pas de Deux'' tells of the hunger and love of an anorexic ballerina who uses up endless young pickups, without condoms, and dances ever more blissfully for them, as she waits for the prince her mother told her would come. Standouts are ``Going Under,'' Ramsay Campbell's brilliant story of a jogger going mad and being crushed in a tunnel full of other joggers; George C. Chesbro's tale of David Koresh's gasoline raptures at ``Waco''; and, best of all, Douglas E. Winter's ``Loop,'' about obsession with a child porn star into her adulthood, her snuff film, and farewell as meat on a coroner's slab. As horror writer T.E.D. Klein suggests in his startled, all- this-may-have-gotten-a-bit-out-of-hand introduction, one has to be a little off-center to like this in-your-face grue. Utterly ghastly but, ugh, at times inspired.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-451-45472-3
Page count: 416pp
Publisher: ROC/Penguin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 1995


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