Slow Burn


By Mike Allen

cover image of Slow Burn

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"Nerve-racking anticipation and dread . . . An assemblage of horror tales and somber verses that frighten and fascinate." —Kirkus Reviews
"Will appeal to horror fans seeking something fresh." —Publishers Weekly

"Mythical, chilling, and visceral . . . Truly a slow burn readers will crave to simmer in."
—Ai Jiang, Hugo Award-nominated author of Linghun and I Am AI

"Unsettling, perceptive, always surprising, always absorbing—Slow Burn is a collection of gems."
—Premee Mohamed, Nebula Award-winning author of Beneath the Rising

"By turns gorgeous, horrifying, gruesome, furious, darkly erotic, wickedly funny, and frequently all of those things at once, this extraordinary collection never shies away from pushing the reader's boundaries. Allen masterfully succeeds in being transgressive in all the best and most beautiful ways. I adore this book."
—Sunny Moraine, author of Your Shadow Half Remains

The search for a missing grandson unearths a pit of unholy hunger. A war between flesh-stealing supernatural entities will subject an entire city to devastating mayhem. In a harrowing future world, a slave is charged by his terrifying master with building a creature in its likeness. The voyage of a plague ship won't end at mere death. Parasites are partners and lovers, and the immortal soul is but a single stage in the complex life cycle of a symbiote.
Slow Burn gathers fourteen stories of horror and thirteen macabre poems by two-time World Fantasy Award finalist Mike Allen, author of the Shirley Jackson Award-nominated collections Unseaming and Aftermath of an Industrial Accident. Allen's works are "exquisite and vivid, his worlds rich with brilliant detail," says three-time Bram Stoker Award® winner Christina Sng in her introduction. "The images he paints with words are terrifying and mesmerizing, keeping you enthralled and unable to look away."
These tales and verses, set in worlds of fantasy and sorcery, in twisted, surreal futures, and in hard-boiled modern milieus . . . all find ways to explore the abyssal darkness of the human heart.
"Diabolically inventive and varied . . . You'll laugh, shudder, cry, and throw up a little in your mouth. Mike Allen's range can outstretch any fleshy hell-tendril, darting from experimental poetry to cheeky Clive Barker satire to whip-sharp supernatural thrillers . . . achingly human characters and heaping, writhing helpings of body horror."
—Rich Larson, author of Ymir and Tomorrow Factory

"At turns dripping with Cronenberg body horror, infused with Barker misanthropy, and crawling with the darkest fantasy, the stories and poems in Slow Burn are beautifully crafted to lure you in, but their beauty won't let you go easily."
—Michael Wehunt, author of The Inconsolables

"Slow Burn is a multifaceted, multifarious feast for the horror-hungry."
—Matthew M. Bartlett, author of Gateways to Abomination and Where Night Cowers

Slow Burn