Today I am combining two short pieces of short dark fiction into one review post. These two shorts are by an author I’ve just been made aware of. Chris Roy has written two crime thriller trilogies and numerous short stories. His stories Marsh Madness and Re-Pete are published by Near to the Knuckle. Marsh Madness is a fast moving story coming in at around 1,500 words. Re-Pete is a solid length short story coming in at around 5,000 words. I enjoyed them both and will be checking out more of his work in the future. Chris Roy’s guest post earlier this week, here at The Scary Reviews, received a lot of positive comments. Hopefully these shorts will be as popular with everyone who follows this blog.
Marsh Madness is a very polished piece of writing. By this I mean it has a flow and feel of someone who has been working their craft of writing for some time. Chris Roy sets a scene and quickly gets his story moving. A psychopath is loose in the woods and marsh land area, which for him is a perfect hunting ground. What I really liked was not knowing where the story was going, because what fun is seeing the ending before you get there. The antagonist is a creepy and unsettling guy. A foggy and dark woodland is a perfect setting and really helped set the scene. The kid is a bit predictable, but that’s not the end of the world for this reader. The end of the story is set up to make you want more, to see where this guy goes next, and what happens to the kid and his Mom. I could see this short dark tale being expanded into a novella length story. I’m sure the author has his own thoughts on this, but I bet it’s crossed his mind.
Re-Pete is a dark and disturbing story about a boy with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and his abusive, I don’t give two craps, step dad. Again Chris Roy has written a great story. It’s off and running from page one as I got my first ‘look’ at Pete, the protagonist, and his damaged face. The way Pete’s dialogue is written is really good. It’s written from the viewpoint of a child, in only the way a child can view the world. The language and tone are easy to recognize, filled with the fear and wonder. The story had great pacing and it kept me intrigued. I had to know where it was all going and what was in store for Pete. I loved the backstory about why Pete suffered his trauma resulting in two bad eyes. Pete’s Mother is at her wit’s end and the doctor tells her his Obsessive Compulsive Disorder will get better or he may display different symptoms. She’s left not knowing what to expect and she hopes for the best. For me the best was the gut punch that came at the ending. For this reader, Re-Pete was a really good read and well done from start to finish.
Chris Roy, biography
Chris Roy was raised in South Mississippi, in the midst of ugly Gulf Coast beaches and spectacular muddy bayous.
Chris lived comfortably with the criminal ventures of his youth until a fistfight in 1999 ended tragically. Since January, 2000, he’s been serving a life sentence in the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
Nowadays he lives his life crime vicariously, through the edgy, fast-paced stories he pens, hoping to entertain readers. When he isn’t writing, he’s reading, drawing or looking for prospects to train in boxing.