Blue Rose by Peter Straub; The Monster by Joe Haldeman; Lacunae by Karl Edward Wagner; “Pale, Trembling Youth” by W. H. Pugmire and Jessica Amanda Salmonson; Muzak for Torso Murders by Marc Laidlaw; Goodbye, Dark Love by Roberta Lannes; Out There by Charles L. Grant; Little Cruelties by Steve Rasnic Tem; The Man With the Hoe by George Clayton Johnson; They’re Coming for You by Les Daniels; Vampire by Richard Christian Matheson; Lapses by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro; The Final Stone by William F. Nolan; Irrelativity by Nicholas Royle; The Hands by Ramsey Campbell; The Bell by Ray Russell; Lost Souls by Clive Barker; Reaper by Robert Bloch; The Transfer by Edward Bryant; and Pain by Whitley Strieber.
Solid original horror anthology from Etchison, a fine and unjustly neglected horror writer in his own right. There’s violence, and sexual violence, here, but most of it seems justified by the context of the stories (though “Goodbye, Dark Love” seems a wee bit problematic). The writers basically comprise a who’s who list of 1980’s horror writers, along with some genre long-timers (Nolan, Johnson, and Bloch). Etchison’s revealing introduction grants an insight into his career, and into his thoughts on the state of horror and other genres as of 1986. Recommended.