Five Stories Ya Gotta Read – June 2020

This is the start of a brand-new series of blog posts. Each month I will share with you five stories that I’ve read recently that you should look into.


Wilderness’ by Letitia Trent from Exigencies ed. Richard Thomas

Recently I took a course on contemporary dark fiction, and this is the first short story we read for discussion. Letitia does a great job of building a nightmare scenario that could happen to anyone. There’s something about the mundanity of an airport terminal that lends itself well to madness. This reminded me a lot of Stephen Kings novella, The Mist.

Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been’ by Joyce Carol Oates

This is another one I read for the CDF course. Before this, I’d never read anything by Joyce Carol Oates. Now, I can see why she is such a fixture in the literary community. This story will leave you guessing the nature of the villain every time you read it. So good.

Bleating of a Dying Fawn’ by Oscar White from HamLit: No Man’s Land

This is one by a personal acquaintance of mine and published in a new, regional literary journal. The imagery in this is as beautiful as it is unsettling. I always love a darker story set in my neck of the woods.

The Memory Priest of the Creech People’ by Paul Theroux

This is probably one of the strangest stories I’ve come across in a while, and I’ve read some weird stuff. It reads like an anthropological article about a lost tribe. It’s very short, and will stick in your memory, whether you want it to or not.

That Baby’ by Lindsay Hunter from The New Black ed. Richard Thomas

Here’s one that will haunt you. If you weren’t afraid of children already, you will be. Linday will have you nervously watching every kid sitting nearby and playing in the sandbox. You really can’t go wrong with any story in this anthology.


And, that’s all for this month. Watch in July for another Five Stories Ya Gotta Read!

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