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These Old Tales

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  41 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Draw up your covers, turn on your lights and get ready to explore some generally weird, creepy little tales where the truth lies somewhere beyond what you expect.

These Old Tales is a collection of dark fiction, containing 38 flash to short story length pieces. There are over 75,000 words of delectable hair-raising terror in these pages, stories that will make you think, ta
Paperback, 194 pages
Published April 26th 2012 by Distressed Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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May 10, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Even though this collection, as a whole, is not as gripping as one might hope, there are a few real gems that make it worth the read. In my view, Kenneth W. Cain's best work is displayed in the short stories. As with most of the collection, there are many familiar horror themes, but Cain manages to give most an interesting twist. "Nocturnal" is one such story, but any discussion may prove a spoiler, so I'll move on. Among the zombie stories, "After the Ocolitz" and "Gladiator David" both treat f ...more
C. Bryan Brown
Jul 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
If a novel is an author's magnum opus then a short story is his or her calling card. It is dug up, brushed off, and prepared with care and concern, then left where the reader can stumble upon it. What you have with Cain's "These Old Tales" is a collection of calling cards that he's prepared and there's something for everyone.

The majority of the writing contained in this collection is horror; it's dark, foreboding, and creepy. But don't despair, because it works here as Cain tempers the darkness
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review

This is a collection of short stories that have a serious bent toward the dark side of a person's reality. There are stories about getting in a fight in a line trying to figure out where you will spend eternity, a western involving a werewolf, lizards eating a man bent on committing infidelity, stories that the reader has too actually think about and some that just make the reader say oops. Good book
Dec 19, 2014 rated it liked it
I have previously read other of Mr. Cain's short works, and I have to say that I was not as captivated by this collection as I'd hoped I would be. Having said that, perhaps it's fair to say that this could be a case of the "elevated expectations" syndrome I seem to encounter with some books, and especially films, that I have very much looked forward to. Some of the stories in this collection were excellent, and many, such as the first piece, which maybe even raised my expectations a bit, are ver ...more
Feb 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Scenes from the zombie apocalypse, fisticuffs at the Pearly Gates, demented killers, wanna-be killers, bizarre horticulture, harbinger cerulean bunnies and a frantic mouse in search of cheese (my personal favorite) are just some of the creepy delights to found in this entertaining collection for short stories/flash fictions.

The author deftly inhabits the minds of his protagoists, turning each piece into a sharp characterization that resonates long after it's (usually) morbid conclusion. Not al
Dane Hatchell
Dec 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’m convinced when Kenneth Cain pushed his way out the womb he told a story after taking his first breath. The tale may have been short, but I have no doubt compelling.

These Old Tales offers a bountiful collection of flash fiction, short stories, and yes, even poetry. A variety of creatures crawl from the pages such as ghosts, zombies, werewolves, Satan, Death, deranged killers, and many other nasty sorts.

I admire how Cain trusts the intelligence of the reader in his story presentations. Subtle
K. Jones
Jun 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's a reason why I enjoy reading collections by single authors. They kind of provide a buffet of what an author is all about. These Old Tales is packed with stories of all lengths and poetry that really engages the reader. I tend to read collections or anthologies at a slower pace because I usually only read one or two stories at a time. Kind of like cleansing the pallet. With all collections, a reader will hand pick out certain stories they liked or disliked and These Old Tales will certain ...more
Rob Allens
Oct 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short story collections usually don't do much for me, but this is an exception to that rule. Cain gives us well-crafted tales with a very unique perspective. His stories avoid the cliche of violence, gore and blood to give us horror from a very different angle. A man crushed under a massive metal bar. But is that really what happened? Cain's tales are never what they seem and it keeps you reading. I could have done without the poetry, but I'm not a fan of that side of literature. A good one here ...more
Kyle Dickerson
Apr 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not only does Kenneth Cain shoot you into a world of tension, filled with the darkness of the twisted human psyche, but he does it with finesse. These Old Tales gives a glimpse into the fears we all share and the nightmares we try to avoid. Get comfortable, grab a cup of coffee, and get ready to be thrust into the twisted mind of Kenneth Cain. And whatever you do...leave a light on.
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very awesome short stories! I love how you're dragged in and you don't know your in danger until its too late to turn back! ;) No really Kenneth Cain is a very talented writer and this book is a must read! So go buy it already!
Feb 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was stunned by the sick scenes this author can imagine!! Some of the stories are beyond morbid and all of them come with a can-you-figure-it-out-in-time twist.

Minus one star because there's still a need for some editing- typos, wife called by the wrong name, etc.
May 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Decent book. Well written and the stories kept me intrigued. Thank you
Feb 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: thrillers
Some good stories, but there were a bunch of "eh" stories too.
Jan 05, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I am not going to say this is a bad book...some of the stories were pretty good, but overall...ehhhhh
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Kenneth W. Cain first got the itch for storytelling during his formative years in the suburbs of Chicago, where he got to listen to his grandfather spin tales by the glow of a barrel fire. But it was a reading of Baba Yaga that grew his desire for dark fiction. Shows like The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and One Step Beyond furthered that sense of wonder for the unkn ...more
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