Edited by Bill Breedlove
Published by Dark Arts Books
Buy it from the Amazon here!
story goes something like this- I’m sitting in a bar during happy hour,
downing a few beers with a friend when my girlfriend sends me a text
message. I open my phone and stare with glazed eyes at the message,
which reads simply: "Candy in the Dumpster."
course, I look at that in my getting-drunk state and wonder what
exactly the fuck that means? Did something happen in the garbage
outside our apartment? Was she forced to throw away a large amount of
cocaine? Was she finally offering up her ass for my enjoyment? (Come on
fellas, you’d be thinking that too if you were buzzed…)
showed it to my friend who was equally confused, and we laughed,
wondering what exactly the cryptic message could mean. My response text
of "What the…?" was answered by "hahaha.. you got a book in the mail-
I thought you were expecting it."
Indeed I was. I really enjoyed John Everson’s chapboook Failure and had talked to him about obtaining a copy of his upcoming book, the short story collection called Candy in the Dumpster. How I forgot a title like that I’ll never know- except that it probably had something to do with large amounts of alcohol.
the the first book to be released by Everson’s Dark Arts Books label-
his stories are joined here by those of 3 other authors from his native
Windy City. Martin Mundt, Bill Breedlove, and Jay Bonansinga join
Everson on putting up 3 stories each, all of them solid and ranging
from good to great. They do tend to run to the more rugged side of
horror, though. You’ve got all sorts of craziness on display here;
babies being smashed into radiators, young serial killers in training,
the slowest bullet in the world, and even some love scenes with a
starts us off with the deliciously nasty "A Perfect Plan", possibly my
favorite tale of the bunch. In it, he tells the story of a man who
tries to cover up his murder by offing anyone who can finger him. It’s
viciously dark, hysterical through its sheer insanity- and sets the
tone perfectly for the stories to come. His "Babies is Smart" is the
most disturbing of all of them, although it’s humorous in its
depravity. There is a lot of dark, dark humor in this book…. and yes,
a lot of these stories are played for laughs by going for pure
gross-out goodness. The authors take delight in telling you some nasty
stories, but that’s not to say there’s isn’t some straight-up horror
"The White House" is probably the spookiest of the bunch- in it a
mysterious old lady tells a child the true horrible stories about the
very house she’s standing in. Mundt’s "The Cure" is a dark look at what
happens when the government steps up the war on drugs, not by targeting
the dealers- but by eliminating the addicts.
offended by sexual horror stories should not crack these pages.
Everson’s "Pumpkin Head" is both a great play on words and a scary
story of parental responsibilities given to a young man who decides to
have his way with the pick of the pumpkin patch. It’s very much
reminiscent of his story "Failure". Breedlove’s "Drowning in the Sea of
Love" is another equally ironic title, with the sea in this case being
a shade of yellow and on a porno set.
"Stash" revolves around man who has invented a genius idea- The Porno
Pal System. His company runs around and clears away any porn that might
be found in your house after your death. I know a few people that could
most definitely use this service- unless they want their family to find
a bucket o’ porn in their closet.
subtitle on the cover of this book reads "new and used stories", and
while yes, some are reprinted from other collections, every story
deserves a place in this book. Every single one is
entertaining, well worth checking out- there’s not a boring one in this
bunch. It’s not a perfect book- there are a few grammar and spelling
snafus, and it is a short read- but it’s one you’ll pick up again and
again. I’ve already read some of them 3 or 4 times with a grin on my
face, enjoying the black humor and picking up little nuances every
time. It does what any good compilation does- makes you hunt for more
work by the authors. I look forward to checking out more of their
9.0 out of 10