If you click on the link below you can read an exclusive extract from my forthcoming novel Dead Bad Things (to be published in September 2011 by Angry Robot/Osprey).
The novel is the second in the Thomas Usher series, which began in 2010 with Pretty Little Dead Things (which is avilable now).
Another stunning piece of writing that has increased my anticipation of the next Thomas Usher book (as if I needed it..!) Just a short extract but still manages to create an atmosphere of horror and unease that so many full length novels don't come anywhere near. That's why I liked Pretty Little Dead Things so much - it maintained the horror throughout the whole length of the novel.
Looks like terrible things are going to happen to children - which seems to be a recurring theme in your writing. I guess it could be a controversial topic but when you've used the theme in the past the quality of your writing has raised it far above anything that could be regarded as exploitative or at the very least simply in bad taste. You've written some of the darkest stuff I've ever read and I was wondering if there's anything you would yourself draw the line at or if there's anything you've written and then thought was too much..?
Thanks, Anthony - much appreciated.
Yeah, horror inflicted upon children is certainly a theme in the Usher books. We have a 7 year-old son, and after he was born I realised that I was writing out a lot of my own fears regarding kids in my work. I've spoken to a lot of other writers this has happened to; it seems a common thread.
I'd say the novella "In the Skin" is about as far as I've gone with horrific material. I can barely read it now: the story seems toxic.
Different Skins was the first book of yours that I read. I remember thinking after I'd finished it (and still do) that In the Skin was the most disturbing thing I'd ever read. It's a rare gift to be able to truly horrify readers (as opposed to just scaring them)but it's one you possess in spades.
(Obviously wasn't so disturbed that it stopped me wanting to read everything else you'd written...)
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