I loved the previous collection of stories called The Night Marchers from author Daniel Braum. Braum has a real knack for writing engrossing and deep stories that defy genre categorisation. His previous collection whisked me away to exotic locations where music played a central role and his characters encountered both magic and darkness. Music is once again a feature here inside of The Wish Mechanics.
The Wish Mechanics is yet another example of Braum’s talent for writing fiction that walks a strange and magical line. This book flirts with horror, science fiction and fantasy, yet still, it would be ill-advised to simply label the stories as such. Whilst there are certainly elements of all genres, Braum still manages to add his own flavour to the stories, and in doing so he creates rich settings and relatable and interesting characters whilst not falling into the trap of stereotyping.
There were a couple of real highlights for me. The title story, The Wish Mechanics, has a kind of Orwellian feel to it that I loved so much and I was only too pleased to revisit An American Ghost in Zurich, which previously featured in Grey Matter Press‘ anthology, Death’s Realm. It’s a fantastic story about time travel and is also one of the most haunting and memorable I’ve come across in some time.
Simply put, If you’re a little tired of reading the same old, same old then you need to give Daniel Braum’s stories your time. Here is a writer determined to do things a little differently, a writer not afraid of walking a different path or one who gets too comfortable writing in any one genre. One of the biggest compliments you can pay a writer is by saying he/she writes like no other, well, Daniel Braum writes like no other. Go get some.
4/5 Basilisks from the Grim Reader.
Pick up a copy from here.