Book Review: TRANSCENDENT (2018)

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I have always been an avid reader and I have found that reading horror stories have always been my favorite. I especially love reading anthologies, which TRANSCENDENT fits into that category well.

TRANSCENDENT was edited by Anthony S. Buoni and Alisha Costanzo. Stories in the collection include writings from authors Ken McGrath, Thomas Welsh, Kathyrn Hore, Sam Kepfield, Shaun Horton, and Will Jacques, just to name a few.

TRANSCENDENT is definitely not a small collection of stories, there are over fifty stories included in it. The book starts off with a story by Ken McGrath named, “The Astronaut's Ghost,” which is not that long, around five pages. It’s a twisty story in which Elizabeth Maraget Shaw tells how she was nine when she first saw a ghost of an astronaut. She doesn’t learn until later that it was an omen.

“House of Mirrors,” was one of my favorites because it really spoke to me. I’m sure many can relate with self-esteem issues and this one just takes it to a different level. I don’t want to ruin the story’s outcome but it involves a woman named Britney being taunted to die because she will just grow old and lose her looks anyway. I think this one has a moral that society is too obsessed (especially with women) and we have to young and pretty. “House of Mirrors” was written by Madison Estes.

“Sunday School” is another bizarre one about a mother who uses what she found from the skies as communion. She believes it’s a gift from the gods and her son learns the real truth too late. “Sunday School” was written by Shaun Horton.

Other notables were “Lives of Ghosts” by Zoe Harrington, “Even Demons Order Food Online” (this alone is great because of the title) by Thomas Welsh, “Lisa Sees the Buffalo” by Samantha Pilecki, and “Stone Circle” by Gwenda Major.

The story that ends the collection is called “The Darkest Regions of Our Hearts,” by Wondra Vanian. It’s definitely one of the oddest ones. It’s about a woman who lets her dream “consume” her. It’s worth noting that dreams do play a big part in a lot of these stories.

There are so many great stories in this collection that I don’t really think I found one that wasn’t at least interesting enough. The collection reminded me of something from my favorite classic sci-fi shows, “The Outer Limits” or “The Twilight Zone,” as well as two of my favorite authors Ray Bradbury and Clive Barker (which especially reminded me of his early short stories).

Overall TRANSCENDENT is worth the read especially if, like me, you enjoy anthologies. Each story is so different and packed full of sci-fi and paranormal themes. I don’t believe that anyone who reads it will be bored, it’s just that peculiar. Also, the illustrations in the book are memorable.  TRANSCENDENT was released last month and can be purchased at Amazon.

Kellie Haulotte