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The Worm in Every Heart

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4.06  ·  Rating details ·  54 ratings  ·  7 reviews
IN THE SHADOWS OF WAR AND HISTORY, THE MIRROR BETWEEN MAN AND MONSTER BREAKS . . . From the haunted hills of Roman Britain to the sewers of occupied Warsaw... in the bloodied streets of Revolutionary Paris, and the anarchy World War II Shanghai... out of the wilds of America, India, Africa and Europe... down the long savage darkness of the centuries, monsters have fed upon ...more
Paperback, 278 pages
Published June 1st 2004 by Prime Books
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Adam Nevill
Dec 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Reminiscent of Poppy Z Brite, Koja and Kiernan. A multi-sensory, lyrical writer of the grotesque and erotic and the terrible across many periods of history. Impressed.
Kate O'Hanlon
Oct 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
A lot if this wasn't to my interests, but when Files scores she really knocks it out of the park.
Julian
Dec 27, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Gemma Files wields her language like a scalpel. This collection of horror stories is immaculately constructed. The horror most often comes from very human characters who populate her stories, and not from the terrors that surround them.
Pam Winkler
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Very good read.
Nigredo was good.
Ring of Fire was lovely.
The Guided Tour was also lovely and kind of unexpected.
Year Zero was very fancy and a bit much for me. Good, but a bit too much.
Flare was lovely and perfect.
Bottle of Smoke was good.
Fly-By-Night was good.
In the Poor Girl Taken by Surprise was good and I liked it a lot.
A Single Shadow Make was good.
Beyond the Forest was good.
Sent Down was ok? It didn't do much for me.
The Kindly Ones was fantastic and horrifying.
By the Mark was
...more
Allyson Shaw
This collection just gets better and better, though I skimmed a couple, other stories like Bottle of Smoke, The Kindly Ones and By the Mark are outstanding and make me want to read more by Files.
Wahiaronkwas David
More when I think about it.
Genevra Littlejohn
Mar 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing
GORGEOUS. If you can ever find it, buy it, you won't be disappointed.
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Previously best-known as a film critic for Toronto's eye Weekly, teacher and screenwriter, Gemma Files first broke onto the international horror scene when her story "The Emperor's Old Bones" won the 1999 International Horror Guild award for Best Short Fiction. She is the author of two collections of short work (Kissing Carrion and The Worm in Every Heart) and two chapbooks of poetry (Bent Under ...more
“The primal sin of those like myself, mes amis, is that because we were once people who acted like beasts, we are forever cursed to be beasts who know they were once men. (“In The Poor Girl Taken By Surprise”)” 8 likes
“Parental love is a matchless thing; if it weren't for that, most of us wouldn't have a pot to piss in, affectionately speaking. But even at its most irreplacable, it's still pretty cheap. Any ape loves their children; spiders lie still while theirs crawl around inside them, happy to let them eat their guts.
The only reason anybody unrelated is ever nice to anyone else, meanwhile, is as a sort of pre-emptive emotional strike - to prevent themselves from being treated as badly, potentially, as they might have treated other people. Which makes love only the lie two brains on spines tell each other, the lie that says: "You exist, because I love you. You exist, because you can see yourself in my eyes."
So we blunder from hope to hope, hollowed and searching. All of us equally incomplete.
And after all these years, still the sting comes, the liquid pressure in the chest and nose, the migraine-forerunner frown. Phantom pain. The ghost without the murder.
But what the fuck? That's all it is, ever. You want to be loved. You tell other people you love them, in order to trick them into loving you back. And after a while, it's true. You feel the pull, the ache.”
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