I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.When a Stranger Comes to Town by S.A. Cosby, Amanda Witt, Alafair Burke, Smita Harish Jain, Michael Connelly, Jaqueline Freimor, Dean Koontz, Joe R. Lansdale, Emilya Naymark, Lisa Unger, Bryan Quertermous, Tilia Klebenov Jacobs, Lori Roy, Paul A. Barra, Michael Kortya, Elaine Togneri, Jonathan Stone, Steve Hamilton, Attica Locke, Tina Debellegarde, Joe Hill
Published by Hanover Square Press on April 20, 2021
Genres: Adult, Mystery, Psychological Suspense, Thriller, Anthology, Fiction, Short Stories
Format: Audiobook, eBook
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“Exceptional… This is the best kind of anthology, consistently excellent and inventive.” -Publishers Weekly, starred review
The latest Mystery Writers of America story collection, featuring surprising, page-turning twists on the genre from some of the top bestsellers and award winners in crime fiction
It’s been said that all great literature boils down to one of two stories—a man takes a journey, or a stranger comes to town. While mystery writers have been successfully using both approaches for generations, there’s something undeniably alluring in the nature of a stranger: the uninvited guest, the unacquainted neighbor, the fish out of water.
No matter how or where they appear, strangers are walking mysteries, complete unknowns in once-familiar territories who disrupt our lives with unease and wonder. In the newest collection of stories by the Mystery Writers of America, each author weaves a fresh tale surrounding the eerie feeling that comes when a stranger enters our midst, featuring stories by prolific mystery writers such as Michael Connelly, Dean Koontz and Joe Hill.
I haven’t read a collection of short stories in a really long time. When the chance to read the nineteen-story anthology from Mystery Writers of America authors, When a Stranger Comes to Town, popped up, I eagerly downloaded the book from Netgalley. With many authors–both well-known and newer to the mystery genre–each contributing a story with their take on a stranger showing up in someone’s life, I then downloaded the anthology from Audible. I was just in the mood for an audiobook while I worked, and this set of stories did not disappoint. There’s a bit of everything in here: crime fiction, science fiction, mysteries, a little bit of thrillers and suspense, and a lot of creepiness in some of them.
Stand out stories for me were “Avalon” by Michael Connelly, “Here’s To New Friends” by Jacqueline Freimor, “Room for One More” by Joe Lansdale, “P.F.A” by Michael Kortya, “A Six Letter Word for Neighbor” by Lisa Unger, “Last Fare” by Joe Hill, and “Howard’s Heart” by Bryon Quertermous.
I give When a Stranger Comes to Town a 4.5 out of 5. The audiobook production was fantastic, and each voice actor did an excellent job with their stories. Editor/author Michael Koryta has assembled a fantastic collection of short stories with the theme of a stranger popping up. All nineteen stories were well-written, twisty-turny, and full of surprises. There was only one story that didn’t resonate for me, but overall, this is a solid, above-average anthology.
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Connect with the Authors
Paul A. Barra
Tilia Klebenov Jacobs
Smita Harish Jain
Joe R. Lansdale