Left Hand Tree (Jay Gunter)

I received a free copy of Left Hand Tree in exchange for an honest review. This did not change my opinion of the book.

“I looked into darkness
And there I did see
The Dead Ones dancing ’round
The Left Hand Tree.”
        -From the Book of the Left Hand Tree

To put it simply, Left Hand Tree is a collection of horror stories.

However, I didn’t find it was simple to categorize. The tales within seemed to cover a fairly broad range. Much of the horror was subtle and sort of crept up on you, while some relied a little more on gore or shock value. Then, there was still yet some a little more like your classic ghost story. There seemed to be a little something for many types of horror fans here.

One of the stories, The Fourth Son of Adam, to me had definite shades of Stephen King, ‘Salem’s Lot in particular. I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me, that’s a good thing, as ‘Salem’s Lot is one of my favorite horror stories. Flowers, the final story in the book, was also a favorite for me. It reminded me of the ghost stories I devoured as a kid. The title story, Left Hand Tree, started a little slow for me, and while it had a few moments that had definite creep factor, I ended up slightly unsatisfied with it. I wish that particular story had fleshed out those scary moments a little more.

Honestly, I can’t say that I read a great deal of horror as an adult, but Left Hand Tree certainly left me with the feeling that I need to be reading it more often. I don’t recommend reading it while home alone at night (or do, whatever floats your boat), but I think it’s certainly a worthy addition to your horror collection.