This is my first time reading C.J. Bow, but it won’t be my last. The Portable Horrors is filled with some good stories. The stories are well-written and enjoyable. Don’t let the cover fool you. Each of the seven stories bring something different to the table. Now, with that being said, let’s get to the meat of this collection.
We Are Acid 77 is about a military operation gone terribly wrong. I can’t unsee that field full of dead birds. Talk about trippy.
Life Is But A Dream is about an old man on a fishing trip. Everything seems to be going well until the old man meets a strange fisherman on the water.
The Bone Clown is about a man who reads a letter. After reading the letter, he finds himself in the same predicament as the author of the letter. The sledgehammer wielding crazy is the best part. Good luck surviving this story.
Hell’s Half Acre is about a group of people telling each other stories around the warm glow of a campfire. It’s a ghastly tale about two friends trying to dig for treasure in an old man’s field. The storyteller has plans for his campfire friends, though. Probably the coolest story in this collection.
It’s Beautiful Isn’t It is about a man who hears voices, telling him to kill people. The unease sets in early. You really don’t know what’s going on until the last few pages. Is the man crazy? You’ll have to read it to find out. Overall, this story is interesting.
Meat Hook Mambo is gritty AF! The descriptions are delightfully deranged. So many victims in this story. Just look at those peepers. I can’t unsee that. It’s nightmare fuel. I loved every bit of this story.
Plight Of The Pitiful is about two childhood lovebirds in a terrible situation. It’s an incendiary revenge tale. You’ll need a shower after reading this one.
All in All, The Portable Horrors of C.J. Bow is a solid collection of stories. It’s a good lineup of stories that span the genre. I dig the story arrangement–it really enhances the collection. As you read, the stories get better and better. I can’t wait to read Bow’s next book. Keep C.J. Bow on your reading radars.
Peel back the pages of this compact stack of short stories and let the tales of terror consume you. Inside you’ll find a collection of seven different stories told from the world of C. J. Bow, an up-and-coming author cutting his teeth on the genre he loves most, horror. Each tale has been crafted with a careful and diligent hand, fermented to taste. With inspiration drawn from greats like Stephen King, Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, and the like, Bow taps into a realm all his own in the Midwest – predominantly Minnesota – and begs the reader to delve deep into the darker parts of Minnesota nice.