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Home and Hearth by Angela Slatter

Home and HearthA review by C J Dee
  • Publisher: Spectral Press
  • Page count: 25
  • Format: Digital short story
  • Rating: ★★★★☆ 4/5

Caroline’s son Simon has returned home from his trial. A trial in which he was found innocent of killing a Traveller’s child. During the trial, Caroline’s husband and Simon’s father, Geoffrey, had abandoned both of them claiming he could no longer cope. Now that Simon has been declared innocent and is living back home, Caroline is not sure she still wants him there. But how can Caroline move on with shadow of the fear she now holds of her own son and the spectres from the past that have become less metaphorical?

Home and Hearth is a short tale but it is sweet it in its shortness. Often authors try to extend their short stories beyond the reach of their entertainment value, but Slatter has managed to keep the story tight and contained.

The only part of the story that I didn’t enjoy was the supernatural aspect. I felt the story may have been just as good, if not better, without it. As a primarily horror reviewer that’s a hard thing to say but it felt a bit out of place in what was a great psychological thriller about a mother coming to terms with a monster inside her son.

However in saying that, the story was still a great read and I would definitely recommend giving it a go.

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Nalini is an award-winning writer and artist as well as managing editor of Dark Matter Zine.


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