The September 2019 issue of the Kindle and print-on-demand science-fiction, fantasy, crime and horror magazine KZine contains eight original stories by Hermester Barrington, Luke Foster, George Lockett, Ken McGrath, Rhonda Parrish, Kevin Roller, Claire Simpson and DJ Tyrer. The cover art was by Dave Windett and the magazine was edited by Graeme Hurry.
KZine Issue 25: Review of September 2019 Issue
Steve Rogerson reviews the twenty-fifth issue of the Kindle science-fiction, fantasy, crime and horror magazine KZine
There are eight short stories in the September 2019 (Issue 25) issue of KZine, a science-fiction, fantasy, crime and horror magazine for the Kindle. The horror stories stand out in this issue, from the opening “Maxwell” by Rhonda Parrish, through DJ Tyrer’s “Wreck” and Ken McGrath’s “Burning Red” to the more traditional “Code Gray” by Luke Foster. Not an issue for the squeamish.
“Maxwell” by Rhonda Parrish
Set during the Second World War, the story is written as a series of letters, initially from Katherine to her friend Betty and her brother Dean, who is fighting at the front. Betty has found a cat, which she names Maxwell. As other letters appear, slowly a picture is built up of dark happening on the farm where Betty lives, happenings that started with the arrival of the cat. Quite a touching horror story, right to the end and past into the imagination.
“Corporate Interests” by George Lockett
How much do you rely on technology? What if the technology was implanted, popping briefing in front of your eyes giving details of everyone you meet? It was the personal assistant that nobody knew you had, and it was perfect for Ana as she prepared her campaign for another term in office as mayor. But what if a rival not only had the same technology but access to her implant? Technology meets party politics in this intriguing tale.
“The Wreck” by DJ Tyrer
Roger and his friends get caught in a storm while diving to explore an old wreck. I can’t really tell you any more about what happens without spoiling it except that it carries on at a blistering pace – maybe a little too fast – as a horror unfolds in front of him.
“Burning Red” by Ken McGrath
Mick, Brownser and Fintan are thieves, and wondered what value they would get from the mysterious hidden basement they discovered. The strange tanks, and the even stranger glowing red stones, enticed them back. That was a mistake. Mick had survived famine and death in the family, but could he survive the horror that came from the basement?
“Sleepwalkers at the Falling Wall” by Hermester Barrington
Will is helping rebuild the wall. Nobody knows for sure who built the wall or what the creatures are that it is meant to keep out. As Will relates the conversations with his friends and Mr Lea, a picture of the wall is slowly built up through the legends and sacrifices that surround it. We also learn of the dreams. An odd tale that nicely leaves a lot to the reader’s imagination.
“Lineage” by Kevin Roller
Elijah wants to carry on the family business – murder to order – but grandfather Roth does not believe he is up to it, so when Elijah gets a commission, Roth takes control to make sure his grandson does not mess up. A very well told story with a delightful twist at the end.
“Code Gray” by Luke Foster
Ryan Doyle is brought into hospital with a ruptured appendix, but doesn’t seem to want to be there, well at least not there that night, that full-moon night. OK, you can guess what sort of story this is, and there is thus a lot of blood and gore to get through until a doctor faces a difficult decision. Ryan, meanwhile, can smell the fresh flesh in the maternity ward. Good old-fashioned horror.
“Too Many Hearts” by Claire Simpson
I do sometimes like a happy ending, and that is what this story is, the whole story, not just the ending. A humorously and beautifully told first-person view of a flying, and illegal, gambling den. Briefly drawn characters shine with their descriptive names as the author observes the goings on at the main table.
Also in Issue 25
As usual, the issue contains a section giving brief biographies of the authors. The magazine was edited by Graeme Hurry and the cover art was by Dave Windett. And it is available from Amazon as a print-on-demand magazine for those that do not like reading from a tablet.