Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Hangman’s Hotel and Other Stories by Guy N. Smith

I ordered my copy direct from Guy’s website. Black Hill Books is now his official publisher, operating right out of Shropshire itself, and within walking distance of Guy’s desk. My copy was autographed. This 2014 compilation includes fourteen short pieces of fiction guaranteed to send a shiver down your spine. The title story alone is worth the price of admission, as they say; a swift short tale about a ruthless judge who had sentenced many criminals to hang. Then, years later, when the jail and execution site had been sold off and converted to a deluxe hotel, the mean-spirited old judge spends the night in the hotel only to discover that he couldn’t escape the past after all. All of the stories are short-shorts and easy to read, but that doesn’t stop Smith from laying on his usual mayhem. The other stories include a brutal short called “The Black Druid,” and a crab’s tale, “The Survivor,” along with “Savage Safari,” “Zombie Gunfighter,” “Dead on Cue,” “Devil of the Dark Forest,” “The Witch of Warsaw,” “Death in the Snow,” “The Beast in the Mist,” “The House in the Wood,” “Winged Evil,” “Poacher’s Curse,” and “Dwellers of the Dark.” Several of these tales originally appeared in The Countryman’s Weekly. This collection is a real treat for Guy’s fans, and in addition to the crabs short, one story features his psychic detective, Sabat. The only problem readers might have with this collection is that you’ll be left wanting more of Guy N. Smith’s unique blend of Hammer Films style terror and gothic ghost tales. That problem is easily solved by visiting Guy’s website and ordering some books.

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