Christian Book Reviews, Author Interviews, Excerpts

Stories of Broken Commandments Chill in "Thou Shalt Not"

  • 2006 7 Dec
Stories of Broken Commandments Chill in "Thou Shalt Not"

Author:  Lee Allen Howard (editor)
Title:  "Thou Shalt Not"
Publisher:  Dark Cloud Press

A bored tourist in a foreign land who gets more than he bargained for. A brother jealous of the attention his sick sibling gets. A man driven mad by the death of their only child; so mad he lies in wait for his ex-wife, plotting murderous revenge. A radio evangelist who exerts an otherworldly hold on his listeners. Magical instruments that seduce their players, drawing them into obsession and eventually, death. A Japanese daughter who spurns her parents' traditional ways, bringing down the wrath of her grandparents' spirits.

What do these people all have in common?

They've all broken the Old Testament Commandments and each suffer a fate unique to that commandment:  worshiping false gods, engaging in idolatry, misusing God's name, violating the day of rest, dishonoring parents, murdering, committing adultery, stealing, bearing false witness, coveting what belongs to your neighbor.

So ... what's your sin?

This truly chilling collection of horror and crime fiction short stories is offered by Dark Cloud Press, and it's best read in the middle of the day … with the light on! Featuring some fantastic, emerging new talent, each biblical commandment is given story form as story protagonists suffer a little more than just a smidgen of guilt for breaking one of God's laws – they pay with pain, torture, blood, torment – even death.

Despite its "biblical" nature, this isn't Christian fiction – but one thing a discerning reader will appreciate is the tact and taste these stories show. They are eerie stories that will leave you shivering and looking over your shoulder, but not "grossed out" or sick to your stomach. In fact, I was impressed when searching the publisher's website,, that one of their central tenets was they would publish crime and horror fiction that showed restraint in certain areas – relying on the elements of good, frightening stories, rather than going for gruesome displays of violence and sexual content for shock value alone.

Pick up "Thou Shalt Not" today – perfect for the serious crime and horror fiction fan, especially those who are not "hack and slash enthusiasts", but more of the "chiller" venue – and mind the commandments, my friend. You could pay with your life, possibly even your soul.

© 2006 Infuze Magazine
.  All rights reserved.  Used with permission.