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The Dark Verse, Vol. 1: From the Passages of Revenants

(The Dark Verse #1)

3.50  ·  Rating details ·  141 ratings  ·  22 reviews
2010 Independent Publisher Book Awards Silver Medal Winner in the Category of Horror

Twenty-six short stories of occult, metaphysical, and fantastical horror that will follow you to the visions of your sleep.

This is Sharkchild's first tome of terror.
Kindle Edition, 242 pages
Published (first published 2009)
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Average rating 3.50  · 
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Gaze Santos
Aug 28, 2017 rated it liked it
The design of this book was exquisite and added to the experience of reading this book immensely. It is clear that a lot of time and effort was spent on the design of the book itself, and it is quite handsome. As for the stories themselves they are very decent. As is the nature of anthologies there are stories that are stronger than others. With this collection in particular there is an overarching aesthetic and style that comes through when all the stories are taken together. Part of this ...more
Michael Adams
A Unique Vision

An impressive first collection from author and podcaster M. Amanuensis Sharkchild. These are tales of twisted logic, ventures into strange realms, and encounters with incomprehensible entities. There is an impressive range of ideas and some genuine imagination on display here. The prose varies a little in quality, but colorful and varied vocabulary makes up for some of the rough spots. I would definitely recommend this book to readers of dark fantasy, horror, and weird fiction.
Dec 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In a nutshell, if you like taking a white-knuckled ride into the darker corners of the imagination, then this is a book for you.

The first thing you notice about this book is the graphic presentation.
It's a hard cover, black in color with an intricate silver foil illustration on the front . Open the book and the end papers are artwork unto themselves, the paper is heavy grade, and each story has it's own individual illustration on its first page (illustrations courtesy of John F. Stifter) The
Jamie McMahan
Jan 16, 2016 rated it did not like it
There are many authors who excel at weaving modern tales of horror and the supernatural in the vein of what might be called "modern gothic". Stories and novels that use elaborate, almost excessively descriptive language combined with inventive plots to entertain the reader. Thomas Ligotti and Laird Barron are among these. Sadly, this author is not. Indeed it is fortunate that he uses a pseudonym. If I was responsible for the jumbled superfluity of archaic adjectives thrown on a page, draped over ...more
Miranda Matos
Aug 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
A series of haunting tales that will chill your spine. The unfolding plot twists and screams of the tortured victims play in your head. You're introduced to all kinds of characters and you see them meet very different, yet similar fates. Pain, devastation, loss of hope, depression, these are just a few words that consumed the characters lives. Most of these stories were symbolic. No spoilers, but you can look deeper and see that the author wasn't just trying to traumatized you, there are themes ...more
Feb 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
What can I say, but...

This is an interesting collection of short stories that were originally told through a podcast by the author. They are weird, blizzard, mind provoking and just plain interesting. But they can be confusing and some feel incomplete. Still, a decent collection of stories that will have you thinking. None are scary to me, but that is to be expected as I have never been scared by reading a book.
Apr 01, 2019 rated it it was ok
Not Impressed

I had decent hope for this collection but was disappointed. Not one story jumped out and me or caused me to ponder. Most seemed overwritten.
Sep 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is certainly fantastic.

Caitlin Owen-Shore
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is like reading new stories from Tales Of The Crypt. The stories are all original, emotional, and enjoyable. The artwork and cover page are excellent. If you like H P. Lovecraft, Edgard Allen Poe or Steven King then give this series a spin.
Shannon Gambino
Jun 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Haunting and undeniable, Sharkchild has tapped into a dark fiction, macabre style of writing that carries the tone of great writers before him to which he lends his own uniqueness. The Dark Verse is comprised of twenty-six short stories bound magnificently by cover illustrations that are as sophisticated as the stories, themselves. Sharkchild has the ability to transport the reader into the deepest depths of death and other-worldly transformations. Death always triumphs over our physical bodies, ...more
Nov 07, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed many of the short stories in this collexion. However, Sharchild's use of older/Lovecraftian language sometimes became his detriment. There were a few noticeable times of a slip in narrative voice with certain words or phrasing, and also embellished pulp language (ie, 'I pried myself from the demon and spent the rest of the evening watching a couple of movies that should have been locked and buried beneath the core of the earth').

But where Sharkchild falters with language, he makes up
Daniel Lawson
Jan 12, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a mixed bag, some stories are good (not great), and some just bleh. Most feel like they're improvisational, no forethought into writing them just long running idea on a theme made into a semblance of a story. Those that I've listened to on the podcast worked better read aloud, it helps foster the dream-like mood that I think is intended when reading the work.

I wouldn't say these stories are Lovecraftian in the common usage (no Cthulhu, shoggoths, etc) though there are great and terrible
Jan 26, 2017 rated it liked it
There are some really chilling tales in here, but overall an overuse of superfluous language. Even when the characters are modern, the narration has the floral quality of early Victorian gothic lit. Some great imagery, really creepy characters. I definitely had a good time reading it. Oh, but none of the main characters are female. All the stories are told in first person, and frankly in most of them gender wouldn't really be a factor to the plot, but all of them are revealed as male at some ...more

This book is beautifully written and the bite-sized stories are not too long, not too short. They sound like they have been pulled out of nightmares and dreams and mashed together. For the weirdest stories wrapped in eloquent language with a Lovecraft-y touch, read this book.

Why the low rating? This style and genre is just not my style, although I can totally see how someone would really appreciate this book.
Carol Bosselman
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was ok
Too much of the same. So much concentration on the Lovecraftian feel that a lot of the stories lose something; or become muddied, and instead of instilling a sense of horror, only leave one confused. A few of the stories were a little more linear, and good, but most of them (to me, anyway) made too little sense to really frighten.
Jan 11, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A book of short stories. They're enjoyable for the most part but nothing too special. They all seem to follow the same formula and they all have the same tone and voice. So it's repetitive in a sense.
Sep 18, 2013 added it
Apr 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing

This is the kind of thing I read more often when I was in college, and can certainly still appreciate today. Sharkchild's writing cannot be denied. Grab yourself a copy!
Floyd Liff
Jul 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Very good

Hearing His podcasts then reading the stories are great. this book is hard to put down now on to book 2
Jul 27, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ok, that was gloriously bizarre. Well done.
Thomas Evans II
Jun 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
New Author

I'm really impressed with these short stories - they are incredibly well written and I loved how dark and messed up they were. I already bought the next two volumes.
rated it it was amazing
Nov 18, 2018
Robyn Erickson
rated it it was amazing
Jan 27, 2018
rated it liked it
Dec 31, 2012
Brandon Kempner
rated it liked it
Oct 18, 2019
Nathan Lara
rated it it was amazing
May 02, 2015
Cedric Harris
rated it really liked it
Dec 02, 2019
rated it it was ok
Jun 06, 2016
rated it it was ok
Feb 02, 2017
Tor-Erik Tøllefsen
rated it really liked it
Jan 10, 2017
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M. Amanuensis Sharkchild is the award-winning, Lovecraftian author of the growing series of horror fiction short stories The Dark Verse and of the dark fantasy novel The Spirit Collectors. His self-published books are praised for their illustrious hardcover binding and artwork and have won six awards. The Dark Verse is also a podcast through which Sharkchild releases new short stories on a regular ...more

Other books in the series

The Dark Verse (4 books)
  • The Dark Verse, Vol. 2: In the Blood of Death
  • The Dark Verse, Vol. 3: Beyond the Grip of Time
  • The Dark Verse, Vol. 4: Within the Depths of Soul
“Even though the situation was in no way under the control of this man, I felt like punching him and sending him from his chair—kicking him until he awoke.” 0 likes
“I had always been no more than a hermit, straying from one shell—one shelter—to another, looking at life only as a constant battle for survival. I barely got by; I succeeded by no other means than sheer luck. I found food when I needed it and I found health when sickness became my leech. There was nothing I did or earned that sustained my lifeline; I was simply a manifestation of mass that consumed and expelled mass. I had no hopes and therefore I was never disappointed. I was a wayfarer through time and knowledge, a companion to their works as they to me were my only friends.” 0 likes
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