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Call Drops

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4.19  ·  Rating details ·  79 ratings  ·  33 reviews
Vincent likes nothing more than rootling round second-hand shops in search of the interesting and unusual. Items that are lost and forgotten.

Why not? He needs the diversion. Time on his hands and money to burn. His life is affluent and empty. Little on the horizon and memories tinged bittersweet.

That’s all about to change. He’s about to find something that is perhaps bette
...more
Kindle Edition, 79 pages
Published November 28th 2017 by Amazon Media
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Average rating 4.19  · 
Rating details
 ·  79 ratings  ·  33 reviews


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The Grim Reader
Dec 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Call Drops is a novella from John F Leonard in which we follow the exploits of Mr Vincent Preece. Preece is a man who made his money in the telecommunications business some years ago but now spends his time scouring through car-boot sales and trinket shops. One day, Preece comes across an old mobile phone. This slightly unusual, old but eye-catching item soon leads him down a dark path.

Call Drops is a story that gets darker and darker the further we go. The layers of Preece’s past are slowly rev
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Red Lace Reviews
Vincent Preece's treasure is other peoples' junk. Rooting around second-hand shops is his top hobby, yet times have changed over the years. Things have become too clean, too orderly, without that original layer of grease. Still, car boot sales still manage to get it right. and Vincent lands the jackpot when he discovers an old mobile phone, one that doesn't seem normal. Soon enough, a call comes through, and his life will never be the same.

(WARNING: This review contains minor spoilers.)

Whilst be
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S.J. Budd
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Call Drops by John F.Leonard is a simmering short horror story full of intrigue and horror. Vincent Preece a hard grafting self made millionaire but his life is empty and everything and everyone he has ever loved is gone leaving him with too much time in his huge mansion set on the edge of the woods. To take his mind off his current state of affairs he loves nothing more than to rummage around junk shops in search of old forgotten treasure.

At a car boot sale he finds an odd phone that seemingly
...more
Kady Monroe
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: virus, horror
I loved this little dark story. 5 *
The main character is a retired businessman. His days are long and he's bored and lonely. His only interest is buying interesting second-hand items. One day he goes to a carboot sale and discovers an old mobile phone. His business empire was in the mobile phone industry and this model is one he is quite unfamiliar with. He buys the phone and takes it home, only to discover it has no inner workings. Still, it looks beautiful so he keeps it. Shortly afterwards, t
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Liz
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: shorts, horror
This was a quick, creepy read!
The further the story gets the darker turns it takes and it's all wonderfully connected.
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Leonard Tillerman
Mar 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What actually makes a great horror story?  This seems like such a simple question, but in reality it is quite complex.  Great horror writing does much more than simply scare or terrify the reader.  Indeed, it will include elements such as mystery, suspense, fear, foreshadowing and a plot which will really make the reader think!  To add to all of these, the story has to have strong, yet tragic characters, as well as a perfectly outlined setting which will set the mood for the tale.  Otherwise, al ...more
S.E. Casey
Jan 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Horror-mystery novella Call Drops quickly dives into the unraveling of the retired and bored Vincent Preece through a discovery of a sinister 'Dead Box'. Leonard writes with great story pacing; there are no lengthy set-ups or information dumps, as he is able to weave the backstory and Vincent's checkered past piece by piece into the action. Like any good mystery, the more Vincent is pushed, the more that is revealed.
Recommended! Great premise. Looking forward to more Dead Box tales.
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Olga Miret
Feb 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A dark and creepy read with a twisted sense of humour I write this review as a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team (authors, if you are looking for reviews, check here), and I freely chose to review an ARC copy of this novella.
I won’t keep you guessing, I loved this story. After reading several longish novels in a similar genre, I fancied a break. And what better break from reading than reading something completely different?
I had read some great reviews of another one of Leonard’s novellas (also
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Jacky Montgomery
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a short story and you could easily read it in one sitting. Also, being a short story it doesn't waste time with any waffle - it gets right down to it and gives you the story without the trimmings.

Vincent lives on his own. He is retired, rich and his Wife and Duaghter are no longer there. He like trinkets and buys a curious model phone..............it looks like a phone but has no working parts that make it a usable phone. So when it rings Vinvent is beyond shocked.

The phone tells him to
...more
Teri
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is one grim, twisty short story that filled this horror fan's heart with glee.  It's been a while since I've read short stories, and I'd forgotten what a pleasure it can be to immediately get down to the business of storytelling  - and this author does it well.  He takes the reader by the hand and gradually reveals Vincent's life, both in present day and through flashbacks.  All the while, you just know something sinister might be waiting around the corner.  And trust me, it is - you won't ...more
Georgia Rose
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I chose to read Call Drops, a short story, by John F Leonard as part of Rosie’s Book Review Team and received a copy direct from the author. This does not alter my review in any way.

Call Drops is the story of Vincent Preece, a self-made man, who now in retirement has everything he could want for materially but is bored and lonely, his wife and daughter having left him long ago.

Vincent loves browsing for second-hand stuff and one day at a car boot sale he finds a mobile phone, a very special one
...more
Hugh W. Roberts
Mar 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
'Call Drops' is the first of the author's books I have read. A short story that took just two sittings to finish. Although I found the descriptive nature of the book rather too long, I nevertheless could not wait to get stuck back in and find out what was going on.

Some of the descriptions of the scenes taking place were like nothing I'd read or seen before. Other scenes were quick but were just as important as the longer scenes.
The ending took me somewhat by surprise, but that's exactly what I w
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Brian Bogart
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Quick Read and Descriptive Writing

"Call Drops"
I want to give it easily a 4.5. So close to a 5 in my mind. It doesn't take too long to get going and once you figure out the turns it's taking, you want to see where it goes.
It doesn't drag much where it shouldn't and two scenes reminded me of ole Clive Barker in it's use of description (not as grotesque, but vivid). Always a plus in my book.
Dug the little author note at the end. Spooky little touch.
Quick and well-told, recommended!
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M.R. Tapia
Sep 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Definitely a great read. A tale of mysterious retribution and lost loves, easy on the lost loves. Writing was detailed and easy on the tongue. Wishing there had been a little more to the story, maybe details and execution on the retribution as they seem slightly rushed to the reader, but in the end I find myself anticipating my next John F. Leonard read. Well done. Wait, is that my old phone ringing?!
Jennifer Ogden
May 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
A truly dark and disturbing story...wonderful ♥️

What an amazing show of character development. While reading I found myself taking on the fears and thoughts of the main character, trying to find my footing as it were and just had no clue what twists and turns were to await me as I continued reading. I love that. I love to be surprised and this book did that.
Erik
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read it straight through. It’s very, very good–old school horror of the guilt-laden variety. If you liked Needful Things or Duma Key by Stephen King, you will like this story by John F. Leonard. It’s masterfully written with a perfect pace for the dark, grim tale. The protagonist’s voice is clipped, but that only adds to the tale.

The story is told from the perspective of a retired telecom shark, a man alone in a ten-bedroom mansion. He reveals that his wife left him and took their daughter wit
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S.L. Baron
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is such an excellent horror novella!

Vincent Preece, former mobile phone developing giant, can't help but be attracted to an odd little "dead" handset he sees at a boot sale. Though it lacks the proper electronics inside, he begins receiving odd calls that inform him of heinous acts by those around him. But, as he becomes more obsessed with these calls, he begins uncovering things about himself that he'd rather forget.

The dark twists and turns in this definitely kept me engaged, and it gave
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Tyler Bumpus
Nov 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Good, old-fashioned horror

Something about Call Drops harkens back to an older, sturdier brand of horror you just don't see anymore.

It could have something to do with the setting: the sullen, drizzly English countryside. Or that it's characters are complicated, full-grown people with full-grown skeletons in their closets...instead of the shrill and vapid adolescents who dominate the genre these days. But I have a feeling it has most to do with the impressive quality of author John F. Leonard's m
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Morgan Tanner
Nov 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This tale by John F. Leonard is a short delve into darkness. As a stand alone short story I’d been putting it off for a while, instead preferring to tackle a collection of stories or a novel. But when scrolling through my Kindle library the other day whilst ‘between books’ it just seemed like the perfect time to read it.

Why had I taken so long? John’s novel, Bad Pennies was one I read earlier this year and thoroughly enjoyed. And Call Drops is similar to the vibe of that one. They both involve m
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Yolanda Sfetsos
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
I've had this on my Paperwhite for a while, so I decided to start it this morning... and finished it a few hours later because I just had to know where it was going.

Vincent Preece is a rich man who made his money during the beginning of the telecommunication era, just before the rise of the mobile phone. He's a lonely man, but lives in the big house he used to share with his wife and daughter. He also loves to check out second-hand stores. Although, according to him, they're getting too clean an
...more
Blue Librarian
Jul 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Short stories are like appetizers. You crave for more. 'Call drops' is more creepy than horror and it shows the twists of the human mind. The black box device is a fine example of what you can find in a genuine second hand shop and why I avoid them. Something so ordinary can turn your life upside down and bring to surface hidden mysteries.
I loved the narrative of the book, the characters, the settings.
John F Leonard writes an interesting story with an unexpected ending. Twilight zone music pleas
...more
Christopher Henderson
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Try to imagine being able to read the inside of Clive Barker's head as he dreams an episode of The Twilight Zone. I know that doesn't give you any idea of what 'Call Drops' is actually about but that's what the story felt like as I was reading it (straight through in one sitting) and it does avoid spoilers. Plus, hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to read the book yourself, which I heartily recommend doing. ...more
Steve Stred
May 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I truly enjoyed this story from John! I had a blast reading it, not sure what the device was capable of and where the story would go. The ending definitely isn't expected or something most people would see coming!

My only issue I had with this, was I wish, after reading this, that it was a full length novel. But at the end of the day, that's not a reason for you not to check this out!
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Racheal
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
It gets creepy as the story progresses. It has a twilight vibe to it.
Jeanine
Jun 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Short, dark little gem of a story.
Sam Koumi
Aug 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
[Note of disclosure: I recieved this book for free for review purposes, but I will be as neutral as possible while reviewing the book!]


Call Drops by John F Leonard is the first short story I'll review, but certainly not the last, as well as the first horror book I've read since Pet Sematary five years ago, and I defenitely will start diving deeper into the horror genre in the future.


The book tell the story of Vincent Preece and how he discovers how bad everyone in hos life are, and how a phone t
...more
Raymond Mathiesen
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Call Drops A Horror Story by John F. Leonard

Call Drops: A Horror Story

Calls from where… ?

Vincent is a retired businessman: a rich retired businessman. He made his money in not so above-the-board telecommunications deals. He is still fascinated by old mobile phones. While sorting through a car boot sale he finds an interesting model. The innards are missing, so it can't possibly work. But then one day it rings.

I really liked this story about right and wrong, justice and injustice and messages from the universe that tell us about the tr
...more
Evan
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A quite nice and creepy short tale from John F. Leonard, the author of the post-apocalyptic tale, Collapse.

I feel as though I should start looking through my things for "dead boxes", but I'm not sure I want to know what they are.

I liked this one.

All of a sudden I want a Nokia 8110.
...more
Kim Napolitano
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Now I know I reviewed this book and it’s not here at all! Frustrating but believe me.. this story will get you here and here ❤️. Read immediately!
Joshua Altman
Mar 29, 2018 rated it liked it
This story is, for me, a "Twilight Zone type" story. What I mean is that it's dreary with twists and turns and just everything you'd expect from a story like this. It's a short read and is definitely interesting, but I feel the quickness of the book is it's downfall. It could be easily fleshed out and you can feel that there were different thoughts put into each situation and characters, from history to personality. If it was given more of a chance to grow I feel it could be even better. It's an ...more
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John was born in England and grew up in the midlands where he learned to love the sound of scrapyard dogs and the rattle and clank of passing trains. He studied English, Art and History and has, at different times, been a sculptor, odd-job man and office worker. He enjoys horror and comedy (not necessarily together). Married with two astonishing children, he now lives a few miles from the old Vict ...more

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