Thursday, June 1, 2017

Review for Tombs: A Chronicle of Latter-Day Times of Earth

It had been a time when the world needed legends, those years so long past now. Because there was something else legends could offer, or so the Poet believed. He didn't know quite what—ghouls were not skilled at imagination. Their world was a concrete one, one of stone and flesh. Struggle and survival. Survival predicated on others' deaths. Far in the future, when our sun grows ever larger, scorching the earth. When seas become poisonous and men are needed to guard the crypts from the scavengers of the dead. A ghoul-poet will share stories of love and loss, death and resurrection. Tombs is a beautifully written examination of the human condition of life, love, and death, through the prism of a dystopian apocalypse.
My review:
In the distant future where land and seas are polluted, an eater of the dead searches old stories for legends. This ghoul-poet, rare among his kind, seeks to learn more than heroics. The times are dismal, needing something much more powerful. Sharing with us tales of love and loss, life and death, the poet examines the human condition on a planet that is heaving its last breaths.

This is a mesmerizing collection of short stories all set in our distant future where the sun is frying Earth and many humans left are ill or mutated. The Tombs is the place where people bring their dead, a massive walled cemetery and city. There are those that work and live in the Tombs, serving the dead and protecting them from ghouls. I was fascinated by this dystopian world, the various people and their cultures. Every story brings the reader deeper into the world, unveils something beautiful and horrifying. Those two things are twined intricately here as we dance with gothic tales of life and death.

My favorite stories include "The Beautiful Corpse" as I did wonder if Gombar was loved as much as he loved. "The Female Dead" with the embalmer who so loved that he did everything he could to protect a beauty's corpse from the ghouls. There were only a few survivors in "City on Fire" and one was a woman who made the final trek for the man she loved.
It's release day for the Tombs!
Share your congratulations with the author

James is one of the writers who belong to the local critique group, S.C.I.F.I. (South Central Indiana Fiction Interface) which I attend every month. He has over 500 pieces of short fiction published, and I've learned so much about the art of short story writing from him. This collection of stories is my favorite from him yet.


  1. Great review! Love how dark this collection of stories sounds...

  2. Christine, thanks! This is a very nice review and I appreciate it--I hope others will like TOMBS as well (and maybe share their feelings about it too). And thank you too for the flattering comments about me ;-) .

  3. Beautiful cover. Like blurb, enjoyed the review.
    ' Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

  4. Congratulations to James!! This sounds beautifully dark. ^_^

  5. This gave me the shivers just reading your review! Sounds delightfully horrifying.

  6. This sounds really cool. A ghoul-poet. The thinking man's ghoul, if you will. I like that.

    BTW, I love the new (I think it's new) ad for your website, with the tentacles coming out of a computer. Take all of my clicks, please!

  7. Tombs sounds cool! I'm checking it out on Amazon now.


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