Tales From the Beaumont House
by D.F. Holland
Midnight Book Shop
This collection of short stories by D.F. Holland has an interesting unifying thread. The tales told all take place in apartments within the Beaumont House complex. It’s a premise I like, reminding me of an old Amicus Anthology film or early horror writer collections. The first five stories have a Night Gallery or Twilight Zone feel to them with some modern themes interlaced into the stories.
In Moonglow, a centuries old spirit influences a game programmer to make him a reality in the video game he created. The spirit’s image is that of a vampire, but he’ll deal with how he was created, after he figures a way out of the game.
In Awaken to the Nightmare, a young man witnesses slushy gray water filling his apartment. This brings him back to a childhood incident that should have never been forgotten.
In Gathering of Souls, Holly purchases a painting from a nearby antique gallery. She soon finds that the lonely girl in the grassy field is in desperate need of a friend.
The 1940’s, traces the life of Jennie, who finds herself in a heartfelt relationship with a spirit in the Beaumont House. Shades of the film, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947) are felt in this melancholy tale.
Cyberspace relays the story of a psychic medium and his chance encounter with someone in an online chat-room.
And finally in the novelette-sized story, Heir to a New World, a young Mom looses her daughter to a rash of nightmares her child has been experiencing. She is convinced that her daughter was not just kidnapped by men but something bigger was taking place here. She finds other mom’s in the area who have lost children and feel the same way. It is not until a Mr. James gets involved that Beth realizes there is a correlation to the missing children and the sightings of UFO’s.
Ms Holland embraces old style writing methods using an omnipresent narrator voice for her stories. This may put an unexpected passive voice in the reading that could put an extra layer between the reader and the characters. But it can also be charming as she touches upon points of her character’s entire lives. The exclusion of visceral violence and racy subject matter would make this a good candidate for Y/A reading, especially for those who like paranormal tales of all kinds.