The second part of Michael Cisco’s The Divinity Student is up over at Weird Fiction Review.
It’s a pretty great site and I’d love to essentially just link everything over there, but I’ll be a bit more restrained and just refer you to it in toto.
However, before I take up my new life of restraint, one story in particular that I’ll highlight is V.H. Leslie’s “Senzbazuru.” It was previously published in the similarly excellent periodical Shadows & Tall Trees and is a great example of S&TT’s “low-key” horror approach.
The unique setting (time and place), the fascinating negative space of the central narrative, the spiral that brings the opening lines through the heart of the matter and back around to the end – a game of routine, a circular room, an compass spinning the cardinal directions, a momentary movement of will. Throw in a few beautifully surreal set pieces and you’ve got yourself a stew.
The first thing that comes to mind when I read this is Gemma Files’s “The Emperor’s Old Bones,” but I’ll admit that’s a very superficial connection. What do you think?