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Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  331 ratings  ·  77 reviews
The intoxication from a pint of vodka, the electric buzz from snorting cocaine, the warm embrace from shooting heroin--drinking and drugging provide the height of human experience. It's the promise of heaven on earth, but the hell that follows is a constant hunger, a cold emptiness. The craving to get high is an intense yearning not unlike that of any other blood-thirsty m ...more
Kindle Edition, 231 pages
Published April 18th 2017 by Wicked Run Press (first published April 12th 2017)
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Start your review of Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror
Excellent anthology about the horrors of the addiction.

The author sent me an Advanced Reading Copy of the book in exchange of a honest review.

The general rating is an average sum of the ratings given to each story contained in this book.

This is an anthology of horror stories with the common theme of addiction.


Rating: ***** (Five stars)

by Kealan Patrick Burke

This is one heck of story to start up the anthology!

An alcoholic man believes that he always need to be drunk (w
Posted at Shelf Inflicted

As a person who has dabbled in illicit drugs and gone through periods of excessive alcohol use, I feel fortunate not to have succumbed to addiction like some of my friends and family members have. Even though I now drink little and haven’t touched drugs in years, I understand the allure of drugs and alcohol and how difficult it can be for the addict to stop using. While the decision to use drugs is mostly voluntary, for many people it takes a lot more than willpower to s
Garden of Fiends is an unflinching and intense collection of addiction stories from some of the best authors in the business. It is not for the weak of heart, but neither is addiction. Let's take a brief, but closer look at the tales within:

A Wicked Thirst by Kealan Patrick Burke: Alcoholism is no joke and many find that they cannot quit on their own and seek out help from programs like AA. This story does not shy away from the absolute power that is addiction and then it slays the reader with
Bark  |  Ladies Of Horror Fiction
This is a truly excellent collection of short stories all about the struggle of addiction. All have a horror twist and there isn’t a dud in the bunch. If I didn’t have to work, feed and clean up after people all the live-long day, I would’ve finished it in one sitting because it’s that good. I’m not going to rate them. Just know that they’re all around the 4 1/2 – 5 star range which totally averages out to a 5, right?

A Wicked Thirst by Kealan Patrick Burke

Things get off to a dark start (and stay
Mark Matthews
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I'm the editor, and a contributing author, and I've rated this book 5 stars with plenty of bias (but I would not have put it out had I thought it deserved less.) Your mileage may vary. As a dark fiction writer and recovering addict, this collection has been a dream of mine. Here's a lengthy breakdown of what I liked about it:

A Wicked Thirst– Kealan Patrick Burke
The alcoholic in “A Wicked Thirst” has an unquenchable thirst for drink. His incessant drinking has caused a trail of devastation in hi
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A very well done and put together collection of addiction horror from a truly stellar line up of authors.

Each one of these stories has a very unique flavor and voice.

The one thing they do have in common, is the horror that is the terrifying and heartbreaking world of addiction.

Come on in and pick your poison. You can’t go wrong with any of these tales.

An easy 4.5 Stars that I am rounding up to 5 because these wildly different tales gel so well together and that is really quite rare in most th
The Grim Reader
Mar 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Mark Mathews' Wicked Run Press has assembled quite the cast to share these stories of addiction horror. A mixture of novellas, short stories and a flash fiction piece, 'Garden of Fiends' is not a happy reading experience but it is an incredibly fascinating and at times grim one. These are dark tales set against a backdrop of fear, addiction and self-loathing where families are ripped apart and relationships are left in tatters. Some of these stories will infect your conscious, burying themselves ...more
Jen (LOHF/Book Den)
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-copy, horror


Garden of Fiends is a really solid collection. I love the format of having such variable length stories, too. Two of the stories are novella length which is fantastic. The first novella is from Mark Matthews (also titled Garden of Fiends). There are so many layers to this story of a man trying to save his daughter from addiction.

The second novella is from Max Booth III.

Spiders, y'all. You haven't read a spider story like this one!

There are also short stories by Jessican McHugh (a stand al
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great collection

I really enjoyed this variety of stories from creepy to sad to downright disturbing. If you like horror with an addictive twist, check these stories out.
Nev Murray
"Be warned that if you pick this book up, you may be a bit uncomfortable with the stories. Also, be warned though that if you do not pick this book up, you will be missing out on an absolute treat."

See here for the full review:

Garden of Fiends

Michael Hicks
My original Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.

Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror is a dark read, at times brutally so. This a collection of stories about drugs and drug abuse, about damaged souls, rotted minds, and ruined bodies. Although there are ghosts and demons, the most malevolent and creeping evil comes in the form of all too real human weaknesses as the characters within this anthology seek to escape t
~ Lei ~ Reading Is An Adventure ~
★★★★☆½ ~ 4.5 Stars
Excellent anthology - interesting takes on addiction and survival, or not.

I have to confess ~ Everywhere You’ve Bled and Everywhere You Will (view spoiler) and Garden of Fiends were the stars for me, but there wasn't a dud in the bunch, even the shorty First, Just Bite a Finger packs a [body] punch.
Nov 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Oh, this is nasty!
First of all - penis spiders.
In fact, I think I'll leave it there. Not sure how I can follow that up, really. Go read other people's reviews. The ones who can get past the wang arachnids.
Andi Rawson
Mar 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars.

Review later.
Michael Adams
Sep 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very solid anthology of weird horror stories centered around addiction and alcoholism. Standouts were the disturbing Everywhere You’ve Bled and Everywhere You Will by Max Booth III, The One in the Middle by Jessica McHugh, a story which actually made me ache with it’s descriptions of painful injections and self-mutilation, and the hauntingly dark Garden of Fiends by Mark Matthews, a story that twined love, horror, and an urban street-justice myth into a very uniquely strange horror story. Defini ...more
John J Questore
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Mark Matthews – if you are unfamiliar with that name, go right now to Amazon and check him out. Go. I mean right now. Don’t worry, I’ll wait. Plus, this is a written review so it’ll still be here when you get back.

You’re back? Good. Now let me tell you a few things about Mark. Mark is the epitome of the American success story: Typical family man with a wife and two daughters. Hockey fan (extra points in my book). A steady job, with a great writing career to boot. College graduate, and licensed p
Kelly| Just Another Horror Reader
I thoroughly enjoyed this horror anthology about the struggles of drug addiction. My favorite stories were A Wicked Thirst by Kealan Patrick Burke and Garden of Fiends by Mark Matthews.
Fair warning, these are dark and tragic tales but if you’re not squeamish definitely pick this one up.
** I received this audio book in exchange for a honest review**

first of all, the production of this audio book was perfect. I have no complaints on that part. The author, Mark Matthew narrates. I know a guy that says authors shouldn't do that. I do agree with him on this one. Mark spoke clear and just fine but there was just something missing. I couldn't get into the stories. Maybe because I've never been a addict? I don't know but I couldn't connect with them. None of the stories were bad but m
Heidi Ward
This one is not for the faint of heart or the body-horror averse, that's for sure. Graphic, fantastic depictions of the horrors addiction inflicts on on its victims and those closest to them. When I say "graphic," I'm not kidding. Some of these stories send the gag meter straight into the red and keep it there; others are subtler, but each one is a window into the hellish landscape an addict faces, clean or sober.

For my money, "The One in the Middle," by Jessica McHugh, a near-future nightmare
Aug 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
You definitely want to check out these books. I have read two in the series and they are terrific! If I say much, I will be doing spoilers as well as TMPI...
Anne (w/ an E)
Excellent book. I enjoyed every story in this anthology.
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
I almost set this book aside a few times because it has some very dark, depressing, and disgusting parts! But, if you don’t mind things like that, these were all excellent stories. The story the book was named after was really good. “First, just bite a finger” I probably could’ve skipped. Same with “Everywhere you’ve bled...” Still, I’m glad I finished. I don’t feel permanently scarred but I wouldn’t recommend reading this over lunch if you’ve got a weak stomach.
Olivia Beaudry
Unexpectedly awesome

This book was way different than I thought it was going to be. It reminds me of Stephen King books, which are my favorite. I recommend this book if you like those types of twisted stories.
Mar 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absorbing, horrifying, heart-rending. I would love it if this became a series.
Elena Alvarez Dosil
Jun 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review originally published at:

I received a copy of this book in audio format from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.

This is an anthology about a different kind of horror. It is not the explicit horror we find sometimes in books, but the real one caused by addiction. Sometimes these monsters can be scarier than the ones in our imagination.

A Wicked Thirst by Kealan Patrick Burke
A man and his insatiable thirst for alcohol will push him to do the
Shadow Girl
* The reality of addiction is darker than any fiction. *
"Drinking and drugging provide the height of human experience.
It's the promise of heaven on earth, but the hell that follows is a constant hunger, a cold emptiness."

Before I read even one story in this 'reality horror' anthology - Mark Matthews had me crying so hard that I could barely see. He presents an addiction anthology with compassion, casting no aspersions on anyone. I wan't to meet Mark Matthews, and give him the tightest hug ever.
David Bridges
Feb 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A superb anthology that is a perfect blend of horror and addiction. As a horror fan, a psychiatric nurse, that has spent a lot of time working in the community with people who are dually diagnosed, and human that struggles with his own compulsions I figured this book would speak to me. It did. The line up in this antho consists of some of the best yet most slept on writers in indie horror.

The book opens up with a great story by Kealan Patrick Burke about a man haunted by his sponsor. The One In
David Wright
Jun 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a new one on me. I was not aware of the niche genre addiction horror fiction before, but it really works. Right from the start it is obvious that all of these authors know their subject, whether it's alcohol, opiates or anything else that can be binged on, and put these experiences into startlingly good effect. There is no glorification / romanticism of drug taking, these stories are at full blown street level and detail the complete destruction of people's lives (family members as well ...more
Robert Mingee
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
This was an interesting collection. I can't say the subject matter was exactly my cup of tea, but that did not keep me from enjoying it. Most all of the stories started out very strong. Some I felt lost their way somewhere along the line, and might have been better off being shortened and tightened up a bit, but overall I still quite enjoyed it.

I received a free copy of the audiobook in exchange for an honest review. The production quality was excellent. The narrator did a decent job with the di
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Mark Matthews is a graduate of the University of Michigan and a licensed professional counselor who has worked in behavioral health for over 20 years. He is the author of On the Lips of Children, All Smoke Rises, and Milk-Blood, as well as the editor of Lullabies for Suffering and Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror. His new novel, The Hobgoblin of Little Minds, will be available in Feb, 2 ...more

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