Saturday, July 21, 2018

Lost Highways - Dark Fictions From the Road, edited by D. Alexander Ward

Release date: July 20, 2018
Subgenre: Horror anthology

About Lost Highways - Dark Fictions From the Road:


It’s dangerous out there…on the road.

The highways, byways and backroads of America are teeming day and night with regular folks. Moms and dads making long commutes. Teenagers headed to the beach. Bands on their way to the next gig. Truckers pulling long hauls. Families driving cross country to visit their kin.

But there are others, too. The desperate and the lost. The cruel and the criminal.

Theirs is a world of roadside honky-tonks, truck stops, motels, and the empty miles between destinations. The unseen spaces.

And there are even stranger things. Places that aren’t on any map. Wayfaring terrors and haunted legends about which seasoned and road-weary travelers only whisper.

But those are just stories. Aren’t they?

Find out for yourself as you get behind the wheel with some of today’s finest authors of the dark and horrific as they bring you these harrowing tales from the road.

Tales that could only be spawned by the endless miles of America’s lost highways.

So go ahead and hop in. Let’s take a ride.

  • Introduction by Brian Keene
  • doungjai gam & Ed Kurtz — “Crossroads of Opportunity”
  • Matt Hayward — “Where the Wild Winds Blow”
  • Joe R. Lansdale — “Not from Detroit”
  • Kristi DeMeester — “A Life That is Not Mine”
  • Robert Ford — “Mr. Hugsy”
  • Lisa Kröger — “Swamp Dog”
  • Orrin Grey — “No Exit”
  • Michael Bailey — “The Long White Line”
  • Kelli Owen — “Jim’s Meats”
  • Bracken MacLeod — “Back Seat”
  • Jess Landry — “The Heart Stops at the End of Laurel Lane”
  • Jonathan Janz — “Titan, Tyger”
  • Nick Kolakowski — “Your Pound of Flesh”
  • Richard Thomas — “Requital”
  • Damien Angelica Walters — “That Pilgrims’ Hands Do Touch”
  • Cullen Bunn — “Outrunning the End”
  • Christopher Buehlman — “Motel Nine”
  • Rachel Autumn Deering — “Dew Upon the Wing”
  • Josh Malerman — “Room 4 at the Haymaker”
  • Rio Youers — “The Widow”
Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.





by Brian Keene

About two hours from my home, nestled deep in the heart of Pennsylvania’s mostly decimated coal belt, lies the ghost town of Centralia. When I say ghost town, I mean exactly that—an abandoned town, much like the ones that still dot America’s West, but this one is nestled in the valleys and mountains of a mid-Atlantic state.
Centralia was once a thriving community, and coal mining was its lifeblood. But decades ago, one of the veins that pump that lifeblood caught fire, resulting in one of the worst mining disasters in American history. That fire has raged beneath Centralia in all the years since and will still be burning long after all of us are gone, pumping deadly gases topside and caving in the earth with smoking sinkholes that swallow houses, businesses, and occasionally people.
Visit Centralia now, and most of the houses are gone. Only three remain, along with a church. But the streets are still there, and the cemeteries. The graveyards are heartbreaking. Many of the headstones have been swallowed into the earth, and the graves themselves are warped by sinkholes as the fire changes the topography beneath them. If you walk out into the forests and look down at your feet, you’ll be surprised to see that you’re stepping on the sidewalk—the cement and street curbs buried beneath fallen leaves and other woodland detritus. Nature is reclaiming this town, but the one area it can’t retake is the lost highway running through the center of the forest. Once part of Highway 61, the state closed it down when the mine fire reached beneath it, buckling the blacktop and creating cavernous pits and craters. They built a new highway on the outskirts of town, but the old highway—the lost highway—is still there. It is covered in graffiti—some of it obscene, some of it poignant, and a few messages that are cryptic or have definite occult leanings. People flock from around the world to see it and walk this road to nowhere. But that is nothing new.  
Humankind has always been fascinated with roads and trails, footpaths and highways, particularly lost ones. Ancient seafarers, explorers, and cartographers devoted their entire lives to answering that question posed by The Talking Heads, “Where does that highway go to?” If The Talking Heads had asked J.R.R. Tolkien, he would have told them that “The road goes ever on.” The Highwaymen—better known as Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson, agreed, singing that “the road goes on forever.”
But if the road has no ending, what is the point of traveling on it? Confucius said that roads were made for journeys, not destinations. And the English poet Richard Le Gallienne opined that roads “offer a more mystical destination.”


Amazon | Goodreads | Crystal Lake


About Josh Malerman:


Josh Malerman is an American author and also one of two singer/songwriters for the rock band The High Strung, whose song “The Luck You Got” can be heard as the theme song to the Showtime show Shameless. His book Bird Box is also currently being filmed as a feature film starring Sandra Bullock, John Malkovich, and Sarah Paulson. Bird Box was also nominated for the Stoker Award, the Shirley Jackson Award, and the James Herbert Award. His books Black Mad Wheel and Goblin have also been nominated for Stoker Awards. His latest release is Unbury Carol: A Novel.


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