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For the Night is Dark Paperback – 27 Mar 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 424 pages
  • Publisher: Crystal Lake Publishing (27 Mar. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0992170729
  • ISBN-13: 978-0992170721
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,715,147 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Karswell on 11 May 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For the Night is Dark is a collection of twenty stories published by Crystal Lake Publishing, a new small press operating out of South Africa and masterminded by author Joe Mynhardt. It's edited by Ross Warren who provides an entertaining introduction to the book which is a chunky little fella, running to over 400 pages.
As the title suggests, the stories are themed around fear of the dark - or at least the majority of them are. It has to be said that in a number of cases the link is a tenuous one (in the sense of tenuous to the point of non-existent) but this shouldn't be held against the book, indeed one of the stories that fall into this category is one of the most enjoyable, A Snitch in Time by Robert W Walker, a tale of hitmen that twists and turns throughout its short length.
The opening story, His Own Personal Golgotha by G N Braun also has tenuous links to the overarching theme and perhaps relies a little too much on imagery for its impact, a case of style over substance. There's a definite change in tone with the next story, Carole Johnston's 21 Brooklands: Next to Old Western, Opposite the Burnt Out Red Lion, which, as well as having the best title of all the stories, firmly establishes the theme of nasty things that happen in the dark.
The horror in these stories comes in many forms, most overtly in Gary McMahon's In the Darkest Room in the Darkest House on the Darkest Part of the Street (the second best title in the book) and Stephen Bacon's Room to Thrive - the latter a story that will definitely grow on you. The dark itself becomes a monster in Jasper Bark's How the Dark Bleeds, a potent blend of arcane rituals and gore.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Emma Audsley on 14 Jun. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this exploration into the darker side of horror.
With this line-up I already knew that it would call to me, but these tales seemed to run a little deeper than the average 'spooky' collection...this is the darkness of the mind. The terrors held within reflecting from outside.

A fantastic cover by the indisputable Ben Baldwin too...what's not perfect about this!

Highly recommended for readers of all the sub-genres Horror Fiction holds.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This anthology of stories based around the theme of darkness, which contains some fantastic tales by Mark West, Stephen Bacon, Daniel I Russell, Gary McMahon and Ray Cluley, amongst others. Special mention must go to Carole Johnstone, whose story is one of the scariest things I've read for years.

A strong and varied selection of stories chosen by editor Ross Warren, this one is well worth your time.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 6 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Amazing collection, Do not read around your dog or cat. 23 May 2013
By Scott L. Pratt - Published on
Format: Paperback
For The Night Is Dark is a fantastic collection of short stories by a group of magnificently talented authors! Their ability to capture the primal fear that sometimes suppresses itself inside of us, until the lights go out, is awe inspiring. To fully experience the atmosphere of the collection, I read it from the Kindle App on my Motorola Xoom tablet. The soft glow of the illuminated screen provided the only light within the darkened room. My children were asleep and so was my wife, so it was just me, a cup of hot mint herbal tea, For The Night Is Dark, and my imagination. Losing myself in the visuals provided within each story, the darkness around me closed in fast. Absorbed into the print on the screen I was unaware of the demons that lurked within the shadows of my own house. I was on page 125 when I grabbed my now cooled cup of tea and took a sip. At the same moment, my 6 month old husky puppy decided to howl loudly, signaling his desire to relieve himself outside. Not only did I jump at the unexpected noise, but so did our 7 year old cat, Sakima... Who just happened to be sitting on the back of the couch near my head. The normally stoic feline morphed into a scaredy cat and scratched my face as he ran past me. Well Played Sir. Castiel, Lyric of Oberon (my semi obnoxious husky pup)... well played...

After pulling my heart out of my throat, I let Castiel outside, made another cup of tea, and finished the amazing collection of stories. This is a must read for any horror fan, specially if you are brave enough to read it in the dark and allow your imagination to control your surroundings.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Horror as it should be 10 Jun. 2013
By Emily Veinglory - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
The great strength of this anthology is the way the stories have a strong sense of place and convincing, realistic characters. Across all of the stories it begins to feel like the bogey monster of this day and age is the chav (or whatever your regional term for youths from the ghetto is), or the under-privileged world they are forced to grow up in and the destructive role of abusive parenting. Of particular note: 21 Brooklands by Carole Johnstone which will probably stick in my mind for some time. This Darkness by John Claude Smith is also notable, it feels somewhat like a parable about the redemption that can only be found by hitting bottom.

There were some stories with notably original elements. God May Pity All Weak Hearts by Daniel I. Russel retells the Dr. Crippen murder. On a Midnight Black Chessie by Kevin Lucia finds horror in a very unlikely place. And How the Dark Bleeds by Jasper Bark seems to effortlessly create a whole mythology around the layered story of the protagonist within just a few short pages.

If there is any criticism I would make it is that many of the stories don't quite close conclusively and give a feeling of resolution. Exceptions being the under-stated pathos in the conclusion of the zombie story Darker with the Day by Scott Nicholson and the tightly plotted A Snitch in Time by Robert W Walker.

Overall this collection represents what a good horror anthology should be. A somewhat uneven groups of stories but none that are without merit, misogynist or mindlessly gratuitous--traits that hobble many other publishers in this genre. At the center of almost all of these stories there is a fate that is genuinely horrific if contemplated, and that resonates with the horrors that do or could exist in the real world.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
An excellent anthology that every horror fan should own 15 Oct. 2013
By Matthew Scott Baker - Published on
Format: Paperback
Hold on to your weapon of choice, and pull those covers up tight! The fine folks over at Crystal Lake Publishing have unleashed a dark anthology that is sure to scare you. Chocked full of talented authors and unique tales, FOR THE NIGHT IS DARK is a horror collection that any fan of frightful fiction must own.

I have to confess that I had never heard of Crystal Lake Publishing prior to getting their e-mail. But I'm sure glad they reached out to me. If this anthology is any indication of the talent levels they publish, I'm definitely going to keep my eyes out for the other titles they release.

FOR THE NIGHT IS DARK is a fantastic mix of horror in a variety of sub-genres. Ghosts, monsters, things of an unknown origin...there's plenty of terrifying aspects here, and something for every horror fan.

Each story is written well, and each has its own, distinctive voice. Yet they all strive for the same goal: to scare the crap out of you. I admit freely that I enjoyed every story in this collection, which is not a common occurrence for me when it comes to anthologies. Sometimes, only a handful of stories stick out...but here, they all do.

One of my favorite tales in FOR THE NIGHT IS DARK is "Mr. Stix" by Mark West. In this story, a simple, crudely made puppet turns one family's existence into a nightmare. But all is not what it seems...

Another favorite is "Eternal Darkness" by Blaze McRob. This vivid tale describes a man's fight with his worst fear: the darkness. But the shadows in this pitch are not tricks of light...they are something far more sinister.

FOR THE NIGHT IS DARK is an excellent anthology, and I highly recommend giving it a look. Every fan of horror fiction must own a copy, so get yours today. The book is available now in a variety of formats.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Mostly solid, Old School terror work 17 Jun. 2014
By Reviewer - Published on
Format: Paperback

"Night" has some notably good work in it (see the "STANDOUT STORIES" below) and is a solid anthology. I didn't like four of the stories (I'm not a fan of stories written entirely in the present tense, and I loathe "GOTCHA!" works*), but most of the twenty pieces included here hew closely to established (and effectively penned) Old School horror structures and themes. Don't expect any groundbreaking storytelling here, just expect mostly solid writing.

[*A "GOTCHA!" story is one where its author(s) set up one scenario - often in a punny and I'm-so-clever manner - but later reveal "it's all a dream" or "it's all in one of the characters' heads," often at the end. Another variation of a "GOTCHA!" story is the double-entendre approach where an author pretends to be writing about one thing, but - sans honest foreshadowing - Big Reveals that s/he's really talking about another (e.g., sex talk/action = talking about/making dinner).]


1.) "His Own Personal Golgotha" - G.N. Braun: Sensory vivid, mood-effective dread piece about a man's hellish reckoning or redemption.

2.) "21 Brooklands: next to Old Western, opposite the burnt out Red Lion" - Carol Johnstone: Poverty, variable forms of familial and sexual abuse and a terrifying blackout are highlighted in this grimy, effective tale.

3.) "Til Death" - Joe Mynhardt: A man (Derek) tries to protect himself and his daughter (Meghan) from a psychotropic and supernatural home invasion. Interesting (in a good way), eerie piece.

4.) "Father Figure" - Tracie McBride: Excellent, memorable work about a man (Andy) whose marriage to the notably younger Mia harbors a secret that will likely destroy them and their children. One of my favorite stories in this collection.

5.) "Room to Thrive" - Stephen Bacon: A group of post-party friends go on a late night spookhouse expedition, hoping to score 'shrooms. Of course, they get something far more horrible than they bargain for. While the characters and the story are familiar, the worthwhile writing and the story's brevity keep it notably entertaining.

6.) "Hungry is the Dark" - Benedict J. Jones: Excellent, blunt story that mixes pulp crime action, gore and shadowy horror. In Soho, a recently released ex-con (Harry Sands) tries to rescue his fourteen year-old granddaughter (Rhian) from a familiar, child-pimping enemy (Howard Kinski). This is one of my favorite entries in this anthology

7.) "Lost and Found" - Tonia Brown: A hospital employee (Renee), while filing some old films in the basement, encounters someone who may or may not be an employee legend, a ghost named Gertrude. This is an especially interesting, well-written work, with a welcome touch of quirkiness.

8.) "How the Dark Bleeds" - Jasper Bark: Another hospital story, this one about an Anglo-Saxon blood creature (a Heolfor), a traumatized nurse (Stephanie) and her terrible future. Interesting pagan history stuff makes this one stand out.

9.) "Don't let the dark stop you shining" - William Meikle: A woman, also haunted by a song, tries to join her dead family. The story is familiar, but the writing is tightly-plotted and worthwhile.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great Collection of Dark Tales 8 Aug. 2013
By Rena Mason - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed every dark tale in a different way. One of my favorites, 21 Brooklands: next to Old Western, opposite the burnt out Red Lion, really made the dark a scary place to be. I loved it because it was gritty, real, and so unreal, yet totally believable and well written. The editor did a great job of gathering the perfect mix of stories that relate to the dark in one way or another but making sure they weren't all the same. Truly a great range. I highly recommend this anthology and the book is thick with many stories to enjoy.
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