Nightmares: A New Decade of Modern Horror

Ellen Datlow, ed.



From the most acclaimed horror editor in the business comes the most groundbreaking horror of the new millennium. In Nightmares, editor extraordinaire Datlow has skillfully reprised her classic anthology Darkness: Two Decades of Modern Horror.


Nightmares: A New Decade of Modern Horror

by Ellen Datlow, ed.

ISBN: 978-1-61696-232-6

Published: October 2016

Available Format(s): Trade Paperback and Digital Books

“Horror anthologist extraordinaire”
Publishers Weekly on Ellen Datlow


From horror’s most acclaimed editor comes the most groundbreaking horror of the new millennium. In Nightmares, editor extraordinaire Ellen Datlow has skillfully reprised her classic anthology Darkness: Two Decades of Modern Horror.

In these twenty-four chilling tales, you will find iconic authors—including Richard Kadrey, Garth Nix, Caitlín R. Kiernan, and Gene Wolfe—reminding us that evil will simply not go away. Two inexperienced thieves discover a residence that makes Home Alone seem like a playground romp. Concerned parents struggle with morality while their cruel child courts fairy revenge. The Ash Mouth Man might be just a legend to girls who wish to waste away—but is he worth just one kiss?


Praise for Nightmares

A Booklist  August – SF/Fantasy/Horror Spotlight. Nightmares selected as a top 10 2017
A Kirkus 13 Horror Books to Put You in the Mood for Halloween
A Barnes and Noble SF and Fantasy Blog Best Horror Book of 2016
A Campus Circle Holiday Pick
A Suspense Magazine Best Anthology of 2016
A Book Riot Wonderful Book of 2016
A Barnes & Noble Blog Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Collections and Anthologies of 2016


[STARRED REVIEW] “Ten years of short horror fiction plucked from previous anthologies, plus some original works, come together in these 24 tales, in which “what goes bump in the night” ranges from ghosts to madmen to what lurks inside the human psyche. One actor’s last hope for reconstructive surgery resides within television itself. A horror writer creates a story come to life, only to get caught in the middle of it. Renowned authors such as Caitlin R. Kiernan, Robert Shearman, Garth Nix, and Kaaron Warren vividly capture the darkness, evil, and fear found in great horror fiction. ­VERDICT: Noted anthologist Datlow (The Best Horror of the Year) once again draws upon her curating skills to highlight the best the genre has to offer. The variety of stories shines a light on the depth and breadth of this sometimes marginalized literary form.”
Library Journal

“[STARRED REVIEW] Building off her indispensable Darkness: Two Decades of Modern Horror (2010), which covered the years 1985–2005, Datlow has here collected the 24 stories that she has most enjoyed from 2005–15. Her task is aided greatly by the fact that the last decade has been a fertile one for the genre, with the emergence of incredible new voices and the decision by nongenre writers to give horror a try. Arranged in chronological order by year of publication, these tales represent the breadth of horror from psychologically chilling to all out terrorizing and feature just about every type of monster or ghost imaginable. As a result of this range, however, not every reader will like every story, but that is not this book’s goal. Rather, it should be taken as an exemplary and accurate representation of what readers can expect from horror today, in general, in one concise volume. Of particular note are the stories by rising stars Laird Barron and Stephen Graham Jones and Australian Kaaron Warren, and a refreshingly original entry into the crowded field of zombie stories by literary-fiction author Dan Chaon. This volume is not only the perfect discovery tool for readers looking for the very best of modern horror, it should also be used as a collection-development tool by library staff.”

 Nightmares is a dream come true anthology for those who love the darker and twisted side of speculative fiction and want to be entertained by beautifully written, dark and imaginative stories that give readers something to think about”

 “Editor Ellen Datlow has compiled works that display her ability to cull quality horror fiction, as well as her enthusiasm and esteem for the genre.  Published by Tachyon, Nightmares:  A New Decade of Modern Horror is a pleasant reminder that horror’s short fiction “golden age” is ongoing.”

“Datlow offers another impressive, diverse and hugely enjoyable collection of short fiction. . . This is a great collection of horror fiction. I’d highly recommend it.
The Book Lover’s Boudoir

“An excellent collection over all, featuring some of the best voices in horror. It has something to suit a wide variety of tastes, blending stories about real life trauma and bloodshed, to stories that pass into the realms of cosmic terror, horror in the old west and even those with a grim fairytale-like feel. In these pages you will find a nightmare for every horror fan.”
This is Horror

“There is something for everyone here from serial killers, to zombies, to demons to shape shifters.”
Shining Star Reviews

“[This] whole book of horror tales was rather fantastic. “
—Brad K. Horner

Nightmares, horror reprinted for works originally published from 2005-2015 is of the highest quality of anthology available.”
Unnerving Magazine

“Another excellent anthology by a skilled, widely acclaimed editor.”

“Edited by the God of horror anthologies, Ellen Datlow . . . For horror fans, Nightmares: A New Decade of Modern Horror, is a must own anthology. Simply put, you need this on your shelf.”

“The overall quality of fiction here is so high, it’s hard to figure out where to begin . . . Datlow has a nigh-immaculate eye for stories,”
Battered, Tattered, Yellowed, & Creased

 Nightmares is more than just a memorable and collective anthology; it is an excellent showcase of some of the finest names in contemporary horror and weird fiction, as well as one of the knowledgeable influence of the genre’s leading editors.”
New York Journal of Books

“If you want the pants scared right off you, this is one of the greatest collections of horror stories ever printed. And that is not an exaggeration.”
Unnerving Magazine

“Ellen Datlow has curated countless collections of horror and fantasy; anything with her name attached pretty much guarantees that the stories I’m about to read are high quality and will linger in my mind long after I finish reading the book. This volume of twenty-four stories is not an exception to that rule.”
Girl Who Reads

“Most short story anthologies feel like entrées, little more than a glimpse into an author’s work. Nightmares feels like an all-you-can-eat buffet where the palate is refreshed every time you go up for another helping.”
Strange Alliances

“[A] fantastic collection.”
Fat Robot

“This is the best anthology I’ve read all year and a must-have for any horror fan’s bookshelf.”

“A fantastic collection of short stories that I think is worthy of your reading.”
World of My Imagination

“…the horror anthology that got talked about the most seemed to be Nightmares: A New Decade of Horror…”
Locus, Year in Review

“Lovers of horror will love this anthology. A great one to bury you teeth in.”
Elitist Book Reviews

Nightmares offers up some of the best horror short fiction I’ve read in a while.”
Looking For a Good Book


Ten-time World Fantasy Award-winner Ellen Datlow is one of horror’s most acclaimed editors. Datlow was the fiction editor of OMNI for nearly twenty years and also edited the magazines Event Horizon and Sci Fiction. Her many bestselling anthologies include the Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror series; Snow White, Blood Red; Lovecraft’s Monsters; Naked City, and Darkness. Datlow has won multiple Hugo, Locus, and Shirley Jackson awards. She has received several lifetime achievement awards, including the Bram Stoker and World Fantasy Awards. Datlow lives in New York City.

Praise for The Monstrous

[STAR] “Datlow, horror anthologist extraordinaire, brings together all things monstrous in this excellent reprint anthology of 20 horror stories that explore the ever-widening definition of what makes a monster, with nary a misstep.
Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Eerie and artfully executed, the narratives are highly imaginative and chilling.”

“It is the monstrous wonders that come from the intelligent minds of these
authors that make this book amazing.”
Suspense Magazine

“Datlow has more backed-up expertise and accumulated assets than almost any other horror/dark/weird editor in the business.”

“This collection has something disturbing for everyone.”
Washington Independent

The Monstrous is one of the most impressive themed anthologies of the year, varied in terms of theme and style, but not in quality.”
This Is Horror

“Ellen Datlow continues to show not just her enthusiasm as a fan of the horror genre, but her excellence as an anthologist. Recommended.”
Monster Librarian

“Datlow is not just an expert (sorry, Ellen, but it’s the right word) at recognizing great horror; she’s an expert at recognizing great storytelling.”
Cemetery Dance

Praise for Darkness: Two Decades of Modern Horror

“This is an anthology to be cherished and an invaluable reference for horror aficionados.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

“I give my highest recommendation for this book.”

Praise for Lovecraft’s Monsters

“[An] amazing and diverse treasure trove of stories. As an avid fan of Lovecraft’s monstrous creations, THIS is the anthology I’ve been waiting for.”
Shattered Ravings

“Datlow brings together some of the top SF/F and horror writers working today and has them play in Lovecraft’s bizarre world. And that’s a delight.”
January Magazine

Praise for Hauntings

“Apt to entertain and disquiet the horror fans.”
SF Site, Featured Review

“Datlow once again proves herself as a master editor.”
Arkham Digest

This is the best of the best—don’t miss it!”
The Tomb of Dark Delights

Praise for The Cutting Room

“Superstar editor Datlow makes no missteps in this reprint collection of dark tales involving movies and moviemaking.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

A Kirkus Excellent Horror Read for October
“[A] tempting volume of stories from renowned editor Ellen Datlow”

“This collection of 23 stories should appeal to fans of horror and SF primarily, though noir and hard-boiled-mystery readers should feel welcome too. . . . Definitely worth checking out.”

Visit the Ellen Datlow website.

Table of Contents

“Shallaballah” by Mark Samuels
“Sob in the Silence” by Gene Wolfe
“Our Turn Too Will One Day Come” by Brian Hodge
“Dead Sea Fruit” by Kaaron Warren  (Aurealis Awards nominee)
“Closet Dreams” by Lisa Tuttle  (International Horror Guild winner/Bram Stoker nominee)
“Spectral Evidence” by Gemma Files
“Hushabye” by Simon Bestwick
“Very Low-Flying Aircraft” by Nicholas Royle
“The Goosle” by Margo Lanagan  (Ditmar Award winner)
“The Clay Party” by Steve Duffy
“Strappado” by Laird Barron  (Shirley Jackson nominee)
“Lonegan’s Luck” by Stephen Graham Jones  (Shirley Jackson nominee)
“Mr Pigsny” by Reggie Oliver
“At Night, When the Demons Come” by Ray Cluley
“Was She Wicked? Was She Good?” By M. Rickert
“The Shallows” by John Langan
“Little Pig” by Anna Taborska
“Omphalos” by Livia Llewellyn  (Shirley Jackson Award nominee)
“How We Escaped Our Certain Fate” by Dan Chaon  (Shirley Jackson Award nominee)
“That Tiny Flutter of the Heart I Used to Call Love” by Robert Shearman (Shirley Jackson Award nominee)
“Interstate Love Song (Murder Ballad No. 8)” by Caitlín R. Kiernan
“Shay Corsham Worsted” by Garth Nix  (Shirley Jackson Award nominee)
“The Atlas of Hell” by Nathan Ballingrud
“Ambitious Boys Like You” by Richard Kadrey

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