THE MONSTROUS satisfies the monster kid in all of us

Though not due out until October, reviews have already started coming in for superstar editor Ellen Datlow’s anthology THE MONSTROUS

Ellen and friend are thrilled with the great reviews!


THE MONSTROUS is one of the best collections of stories I’ve read in recent years. Every story in this collection shines. On each page I encountered a host of monsters, some human, some non-human and plenty somewhere in between. I’ve not enjoyed a collection of stories this much in years. The authors have taken the idea of monsters and created twenty-five original, striking and wide-ranging tales. Every anthology of stories usually has one or two clunkers. This isn’t the case for this collection. Every story in THE MONSTROUS is excellent.


By titling her new anthology THE MONSTROUS, Ellen Datlow drew me in. She seemed to be promising “essence of the monster” rather than just the doings of the things themselves. And after editing what, something like 800 anthologies, I know that she knows her stuff. These are twenty-one stories that, while they will not duplicate the thrill of witnessing Ray Harryhausen’s Kraken lift its third arm out of the sea, can still satisfy the monster kid in all of us – and I know you are out there.


Just in time for Halloween (out October 15th), THE MONSTROUS is a collection of twenty stories that, as editor Ellen Datlow notes are “Not your usual monster kills/destroys everything” tales, but rather stories that tend to focus on “how the humans react to the monstrosities they encounter.”  Great approach, if you ask me, and there are a number of stories that are quite good in this collection.  As is also pointed out in the introduction, “monstrosity is in the eye of the beholder,” a very pertinent little piece of wisdom.  Since this is an anthology of stories, a mixed bag, so to speak, not every story is going to appeal to every reader, and the concept of “monstrous” is also going to be different depending on whose brain it’s being filtered through.


So there you have it.  Would I recommend THE MONSTROUS? The answer is certainly yes, but I’ll repeat what Datlow says in her introduction:  "monstrosity is in the eye of the beholder.“  And that is definitely true.

For more on THE MONSTROUS, visit the Tachyon page.

Illustrations by John Coulthart

Cover by Reiko Murakami

Cover design by Elizabeth Story