After reading A Slice of Fear by Andrew Allen Smith, one resounding phrase echoed in my brain. It was the old Monty Python television program’s transition phrase, “...and now for something completely different”.
This collection of short stories pulls you in several directions simultaneously. From the title, you can easily imagine that you’re going to be led down paths of suspense and tension… but with Andrew, you just never know what that might look like.
Andrew’s suspense-spy-thriller Masterson Files series undoubtedly delivers on what the genre implies; page turning action. You’ll get no such comfort in expectation with this book. The slices you're served will stimulate taste buds you didn't know you had, or wanted. Your breath will catch in the back of your throat, and you’ll think… “Oh, that was good;” smiling to yourself as you turn another page.
Don't you just love hunting for bargains? The ritual of Black Friday shopping is exhilarating! Masks and social distancing comfort our virus apprehension, offering us security. Flea Markets sometimes hold wonderous surprises in the most ordinary packages. A woman always speaks in earnest when she vows to protect her man. These are just a few of the familiar sunlit paths Andrew entices you to explore, and in so doing, you may discover that the gentle shadows have a more sinister silhouette... and it's invigorating.
This collection achieves something remarkable for it’s genre. Each story, while pulling you to the edge of fear and in some cases, enticing a certain squeamish terror, also invites you to examine your preconceived perceptions about how humanity thinks, acts, and responds to fear. These stories will pull at your racing heart and prickle at your clammy skin. Andrew will offer psychological temptations to blend the insight of terror with common life experiences. If you follow his lead, you may become irrevocably mesmerized with your own indulgences of fear. And you'll like it.
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