The 2009 Horror

The Best Horror of the Year Volume 2 (2009) edited by Ellen Datlow (2010) containing

*Lowland Sea by Suzy McKee Charnas
The End of Everything by Steve Eller
Mrs Midnight by Reggie Oliver
*each thing i show you is a piece of my death by Gemma Files and Stephen J. Barringer
*The Nimble Men by Glen Hirshberg
*What Happens When You Wake Up in the Night by Michael Marshall Smith
Wendigo by Micaela Morrissette
*In the Porches of My Ears by Norman Prentiss
Lonegan’s Luck by Stephen Graham Jones
*The Crevasse by Nathan Ballingrud and Dale Bailey
The Lion’s Den by Steve Duffy
Lotophagi by Edward Morris
The Gaze Dogs of Nine Waterfall by Kaaron Warren
Dead Loss by Carole Johnstone
*Strappado by Laird Barron
*The Lammas Worm by Nina Allan
*Technicolor by John Langan

Big, big improvement on the first volume of this series, with a lot more excellent stories and fewer boring ones. I’ve starred the high points, which run the gamut from near-future apocalypse (“Lowland Sea” by Suzy McKee Charnas) through a bad night at the movies (“In the Porches of My Ears” by Norman Prentiss) to, well, a bad night (“What Happens When You Wake Up in the Night” by Michael Marshall Smith).

The Toronto-set Gemma Files/Stephen J. Barringer story does a lovely job of combining both the structure and the content of new media with one of the oldest structures for a horror story (the epistolary format), while John Langan’s story presents us with a mountingly dread-filled college classroom lecture on Poe. Recommended.

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