Edited and with an Introduction by Michael Rowe.
A striking and groundbreaking collection of gay horror fiction by some of today's hottest authors and talented newcomers, covering a wide spectrum of creatures of the night and all manners of urban terrors. These dark, often disturbing tales expand the boundaries of the horror genre: the sexuality of the protagonists is a point of reference for the "horror" of otherness that defines and, at times, divides us.
Finalist for two Lambda Literary Awards, the Spectrum Award, and winner of the Queer Horror Award.
"This groundbreaking X-rated collection of 21 short stories, edited by Michael Rowe, attempts to fill in a vacancy in the genre of "gay horror," a lonely literary realm that has thus far hosted only two notable occupantsâ€”Poppy Z. Brite and Michael Marano. Every story in Queer Fear features a gay male protagonist, something unheard of in contemporary horror fiction.
"On a symbolic level, horror narratives, with their emphasis on monsters and misfits excluded from society, have always functioned as powerful gay allegories of outsiderness. Many of the stories in the book are, not surprisingly, written from the point of view of the damned or the undead. In Michael Marano's "The Siege," two gay soul mates called the Second Born return from the dead to seek revenge on the parents who murdered them when they were children. Other stories explore "the monster within." Particularly disturbing in this category is Thomas S. Roche's "The Sound of Weeping," a tale about a mild-mannered mortician who is surprised when the beautiful male punk corpse he his molesting suddenly returns his affections.
"Only a few of the stories stay within the realm of the conventional horror structure. Douglas Clegg's "Piercing Men" concerns two homosexual murderers masquerading as happily married men in suburbia. T.L. Bryers's brilliant "You Can't Always Get What You Want" concerns a young vampire wannabe who falls in love with a vampire and finds only pain, torture, and death as opposed to the promised eternal life.
"It is unclear at times whether this collection wants to play with the gay reader's worst fears or most secret fetishes. The eroticism that is the subtext of so much conventional horror is elevated to brutal lust in this collection which, in the end, can be described as a delightful potpourri of such uncommon perversions as neo-Nazi love, animism, pedopehlia, necrophilia, and that queer favourite—the handsome high school homophobe who is secretly homosexual. In fact, of there is one thing this collection reveals, it is that one person's nightmare is somebody else's wet dream."
Quill & Quire