Monday, January 2, 2017
The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales - Daniel Braum - A collection from a most distinctive voice
The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales is Daniel Braum's first published collection and it features a dozen of his distinctively different stories. Some have appeared elsewhere over the last few years, others are new to this compilation.
In looking for the perfect word to describe the work in this volume, I decided upon divergent, defined by Merriam-Webster as "differing from each other or from a standard." It's true, these tales are unlike anything thing else I'm reading today. Bold, adventurous, strange, and totally enjoyable.
Music of the Spheres - I can't imagine the rest of the stories being much better than this . A musical genius lives on in an epic masterpiece which, if completed, could tear apart the universe.
Hurricane Sandrine - Another thoroughly satisfying story with an island feel and the threat of loss that comes with every hurricane.
Mystic Tryst - A bit surreal, as are a number of the stories in this collection. At it's most basic, this is a story of divorce and returning the spirits of exotic salt water fish to their home waters. I really liked this particular line from the author. The diner patrons looked lost and lonely, right out of the lyrics of "Eleanor Rigby."
A Girls Guide To Applying Superior Makeup and Dispelling Commonly Found Suburban Demons - What a title. A story of camping out on Halloween night to get tickets for a rock concert and growing up in the process.
Across the Darien Gap - One of the things I enjoyed about this collection was how every story had its own ambiance. Here, a group of travelers on the run, trying not to look like what they are. Things don't go well, but that makes the story.
Spark - A mix of pyrotechnics and a flaming affair and a great opening line to boot. I'm not like the Red River guy. Not at all. He was a sicko firebug and a murderer, and they did right for sending him on a one-way trip to spark city.
The Ghost Dance - A descendant of Crazy Horse, taking a stand, and the birth of the white buffalo.
The Green Man of Punta Cabre - The tale of a priest doing his best to push away the old gods, corn infested with genetically modified seeds, and a miracle stalk that births something special.
Jellyfish Moon - A wondrous tale of an exotic annual festival and a love rekindled, but can any of it last.
The Night Marchers - The title story about protecting the final resting place of the Hawaiian kings.
The Moon and the Mesa - A beautiful story of life, death, love, and the desert.
The Sphinx of Copsey Avenue - Probably the strangest story in the collection and one of my favorites. Like many of the locations in this collection, Copsey Avenue is a place where the real and unreal coexist.
In summary, I can pretty much guarantee the stories in The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales will be unlike any you've read before and will leave you wanting more.
The Night Marchers and Other Strange Tales is currently available as an e-book from Cemetery Dance Publications.
Form the author's bio - Daniel Braum’s fiction has been classified as fantasy, science fiction, and horror but he prefers the good old fashioned term of just “fiction”, which when he was growing up simply meant a story were anything could happen. His stories seek to illuminate the human condition as characters encounter something unexplainable or supernatural and often very dark before achieving some insight, resolution, or ray of light. He is currently finishing the final revisions on his first novel, a supernatural thriller set in Belize. He lives in Long Island, New York.