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Bones are Made to be Broken

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  48 ratings  ·  14 reviews
This collection features 14 works of fiction by Paul Michael Anderson, including "All That You Leave Behind," "To Touch the Dead," "Love Song for the Rejected," and a title novella written specifically for this book. Every story within is illustrated by artist/author extraordinaire Pat R. Steiner, who created the artwork for Qualia Nous Illustrated. The stories in BONES AR ...more
Kindle Edition
Published November 27th 2016 by Dark Regions Press
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Sadie Hartmann
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to the author for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.

I've read at least 20 different short story collections in the last 2-3 years. I will always be a rabid fan of the short story format. I truly believe that if an author is worth one's salt, they will be able to tell a a full story in 50 pages or less.
Sometimes, I don't *feel* like reading a novel. Sometimes I want the reading pleasure of finishing a story in one hour--the satisfaction of an ending with no bookmark
Shane Douglas Douglas
Apr 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is an excerpt. The full review can be found at:

Every now and then in our chosen genre, a storyteller comes along who’s so incredibly good you know immediately that you’ve discovered something special. For me, those authors include such giants as Laird Barron, the great Jack Ketchum, Poppy Z. Brite, and the incomparable Stephen Graham Jones. And in the last few years we’ve had the great fortune to be able to add some new names to that list; rising sta
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bones Are Made to Be Broken is the second title I've read from Written Backwards, and I have my friend Sadie to thank for leading me to both of them.

I just read the anthology Chiral Mad 4 with her and another friend, and the first story How We Broke was a collaboration between Paul Michael Anderson and Bracken MacLeod. That story was so good that I had to pick up this collection. I already knew that I was a fan of MacLeod's work, but I was completely new to Anderson.

I'm a huge fan of short sto
Benoit Lelièvre
Dec 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I was expecting something great based on my first impression of Paul Michael Anderson from the Lost Signals anthology and from the fact freakin' Dark Regions are publishing this (they're very selective with their output) and, well, BONES ARE MADE TO BE BROKEN managed to beat my expectations!

The title story (which suckered me into a three hours-long reading frenzy this morning) really is the crowning jewel of the collection and, with a few tweaks, could've been a standalone novel by iteself. It i
Steve Wynne
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I met Paul earlier this year at a convention. Didn't know he was an author until the night was nearly over, and I asked if he had any books out.

Man, am I glad I did.

This collection is raw, unflinching, and has more heart than Temple of Doom (literally, like, actual physical heart. It's a play on words, kinda. Sort of. Leave me alone.)

I loved this, through and through. The jumps between sci fi, horror, and transgressive are seamless, and each story punches like Butterbean. I can't praise this hig
Horror DNA
May 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: shane-d-keene
There’s so much good going on in Paul Michael Anderson's Bones are Made to be Broken that it’s hard to know where to start talking about it. My inclination and desire would be to tell you something about every single story because they’re all outstanding and there’s something special to be found in every single one. But there isn’t enough space or time to do that, so I’ll just touch on some of the things that I believe are most important. In a lot of ways, Paul Michael Anderson reminds me of the ...more
Shane Douglas Douglas
From my review of the first edition on HorrorTalk.

"In a lot of ways, Paul Michael Anderson reminds me of the legendary Ray Bradbury with a little Kafka tossed in there to make things bubble. I know that sounds like hyperbole, but it’s far from it. Everything he writes, no matter how horrific, is always tinged with a sense of wonder sometimes bordering on awe, and there are tales here that truly embrace a Bradbury-esque sensibility, most exemplary of which is “A Small Town with Very Clean Streets
Nov 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Anderson displays a mastery of literary horror through tone, emotion, & suspense. One or two selections are almost too much for my battered old heart, but I fought my way to the end for the payoff. Wholeheartedly recommended.
Matt Moore
Jun 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(Full disclosure: Paul has purchased a few stories and poems of mine for anthologies and magazines he has edited.)

These stories are raw, brutal and pack a bunch. Not because of gore or violence (though you will find both here), but these stories own up to the good writing advice that stories should be about the worst day in a character's life. Paul crafts elegant, genuine characters facing horrific situations, from one of the darkest portrayals of vampires I've read to an asshole ex-husband look
Stephen Combs
Mar 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great collection. Not all the stories are home runs but most hit the mark. Emotional and heavy.
Jun 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a heavy one folks, all these characters carry a heavy emotional reality, a burden, there is such pain and as the reader you feel it too. All the stories were interesting but I had a few favorites-Survivor’s Debt, Surviving the River Styx, The Agonizing Guilt Of Relief and Bones are Made to be Broken. What I got out of this collection is we are human, we are damaged, we are what we are!
Thomas Joyce
Dec 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The opening story, ‘Crawling Back to You’, concerns a vampire and his familiar. But this is not the tale of a member of the 18th century European aristocracy who sequesters himself in a dark castle and enslaves a manservant to bring him comely maidens. The contemporary setting and the relationship between the two main characters, Thomas and Patty, set this fang-tastic offering apart from your typical vampire story. Anderson concentrates on the relationship between these two, hinting at their pas ...more
Eddie Generous
Dec 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Unnerving Magazine Review
I had a very limited sample size of Paul Michael Anderson prior to reading Bones Are Made to be Broken. In fact, to my knowledge, it was a single story that happens to be included in this collection, an immensely unsettling story of two boys and their asshole father that I enjoyed that story enough to read it again.
This is a telltale marker of this collection.
The most valuable asset in any story, from my perspective anyhow, is a conveyance of humanity that feels natural.
Laura Freeman
Nov 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This may sound strange, but stay with me: Paul Michael Anderson's (magnificent) stories are distinctly familiar. Not boring, not unoriginal, but FAMILIAR. He somehow taps in to something within us as human beings. Each of the stories in this anthology explores a fear that is buried deeply (sometimes shallowly) in our collective psyche. I felt like he was prodding at something I would have preferred to have not been reminded of.
Another thought: if Stephen King's work is decidedly New England, Pau
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Paul Michael Anderson is the author of the collection BONES ARE MADE TO BE BROKEN and the novellas I CAN GIVE YOU LIFE, HOW WE BROKE (with Bracken MacLeod), and STANDALONE, as well as numerous short stories and articles. He lives with his wife and daughter in Virginia. Find him on Twitter under the inspired handle of @p_m_anderson or at his website

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