The Night Doctor & Other Tales

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Pub Date 14 Mar 2022 | Archive Date 31 May 2022
Crossroad Press, Macabre Ink

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This new collection of 25 stories, including two appearing here for the first time, collects the best of Steve Rasnic Tem's dark fiction published since his landmark Centipede tome Out of the Dark: A Storybook of Horrors. A number have appeared in various Year’s Best volumes. All represent the high quality of Tem’s prose and the wide range of his approaches to the horror genre.

In The Night Doctor And Other Tales, you will encounter the most haunting figures ever to cross Tem’s imagination: a man obsessed with his own breath and the breathing he hears that is not his own; a husband waiting for his wife as new bodies appear at the bottom of his yard; a weekend fisherman and the unseen man sharing his fishing hut; a loyal husband dealing with the latest changes in his wife’s physical appearance; a strange widower in his house by the sea; a devoted mother trying to protect her son from the nightmares of the past; a son returning to a dreaded summer vacation spot; a grandfather protecting his grandchildren from a legacy of dark transformations; and, in the title story, an elderly man awaits the visit of a mysterious family physician.

Stories included in this collection:


Apartment B

Red Rabbit

The Hanged Man

The Fishing Hut

A Sudden Event

Paula Breaks

Lost in the Garden of Earthly Delights

Blattidae Wine


Mister Ainsley

The Long Fade into Evening

Domestic Magic

The Secret Laws of the Universe

The Man in the Rose Bushes

The Night Doctor

The Enemy Within

Stick Men

Too Many Ghosts

When You're Not Looking

Between the Pilings

The Erased

The Wake

The Weight Lost

The Monster Makers

This new collection of 25 stories, including two appearing here for the first time, collects the best of Steve Rasnic Tem's dark fiction published since his landmark Centipede tome Out of the Dark: A...

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ISBN 9781637897874
PRICE $3.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 13 members

Featured Reviews

The Night Doctor And Other Tales is a collection of short dark fiction stories, two of which are appearing here for the first time. Many of the stories are quite short but still haunting and unsettling reads written with beautiful prose.

Tem's writing is very atmospheric and although not usually outright scary, it is quite eerie and leaves you both wanting more and wanting to get away from it- and I do mean that as a compliment. This is the kind of horror book that sticks with you and makes you think of it when you see a shadowy place by your fence or dark mud in a canal. Tem also has a very good way of writing characters that you feel you know well, despite only just now meeting them for a short moment.

As much as I enjoyed most of these stories, some of them did not seem to give a full sense of closure as much as I wished for. I wanted to see these characters through to the end, to know what had become of them. Over all though, I enjoyed this book and particularly Tem's writing quite a bit.

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An interesting and creepy collection of short stories, many of whose protagonists walk the line between reality and unreality. As in any volume like this, there are stories that shine (Breathing, The Red Rabbit, Mister Ainsley, Between the Pilings) and others that don’t quite work, some of which don’t even have any definable ending. The writing, as always with Mr. Tem’s work, is outstanding. Overall, a weird (in a good way) assortment of stories.

My thanks to Crossroad Press and to Netgalley for a reader’s copy of this book.

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Tem's THE NIGHT DOCTOR & OTHER TALES is a solid collection of speculative fiction / horror short stories. I enjoyed the stories, although they felt uneven - some are definitely stronger than others. Still, the prose and voice are clear and strong, and overall, the collection was enjoyable to read.

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The Night Doctor and Other Tales was difficult to read; almost like listening to a stand-up comic and waiting for the punchline that never comes. The tales do deliver some horror, true, but some just drift off to a sad ending, or not much of an ending. This was my first reading of Tem, so I don’t want to be too harsh; this may just be his style.

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The Night Doctor & Other Tales

[Blurb goes here]

I know I've said this often. Anthologies are 70% 'meh' stories, 20% 'not-so-bad' stories and 10% great stories. This one, unfortunately, is no different. I'm not doing the in depth, tale by tale review I should. Instead I will give my opinion on a couple of things that, to me, are important. Steve Rasnic's writing style is beautiful. That alone makes the trip worthwhile. The stories themselves, not so much. Why? Because, as it turns out, most share common themes. They feel repetitive. Also, and this rings true for a lot of anthologies, you'll have to imagine the ending, since most of the stories don't have one. I'm not a fan of the 'leave it to the readers imagination', it feels a bit lazy to me...either that or I'm the lazy one, not wanting to imagine the ending to a story I didn't write. It's all in the eyes of the beholder...

Still, I will have a go at this book again, in the near future. That's how much I enjoyed the tales' eerie atmosphere, and Rasnic's prose.

Thank you for the free copy!

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Different creepy tales. Keeps you on edge of your seat. I received a complementary copy and left a voluntary review.

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