Nightmare Magazine is a literary magazine dedicated to collecting quality short dark fantasy and horror for its readers. I found the magazine when I happened upon Alyssa Wong’s “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers” years ago. Never able to shake its imagery, I re-found the piece, re-read the piece, and bought the entire collection. I would have happily given the 2.99 just for Wong’s story alone; it was an easy price to pay. After reading the rest of the pieces, I can assure everyone it’s a fantastic investment if you’re at all interested in dark fantasy or horror.
Those of you who follow me on twitter know that a week ago I decided to tear the internet apart in search of a short story I’d read over a year ago. There was a lot of noise and dead ends, but eventually I reached my destination: Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers by Alyssa Wong.
Don’t let the title trick you—this is a short story with heavy paranormal themes and a streak of horror. Even over a year later I was never able to shake the feelings or intrigue it left behind. Not only is the story unique and engaging, but just by reading it I felt I better understood the nature and composition of short stories in general.
Genre: Erotic Romance
Queer Rep: cis gay
Warnings: Light BDSM
The Daniel and Ryan series by Tamryn Eradani is a collection of spicy short stories aimed to leave you satisfied with each installment, but still wanting more.
Since they are tiny fictions, I decided to review the first two together. Admittedly, I also read the first two in quick succession, which speaks quite kindly of the content.
Daniel is a control freak, and Ryan is… Ryan. He’s the sweet sort of man who leaves his clothes crumpled on the floor and his desk a mess. The stories thus far have been told over Daniel’s shoulder, and the prose reflects his no-nonsense attitude. Only when he’s in the midst of an erotic entanglement do we begin to see stripes of desperation and sprawling lines of thought.
The stories are tagged as BDSM. This does not mean you should be expecting “chains and whips excite me” from the get-go. This series is methodically crafted to dip the reader’s toes into the BDSM world, submerging them little by little. It is much more about mentality at first, which is not what I was expecting. That didn’t mean it wasn’t enjoyable—it was just different. Aftercare is not only mentioned, but stressed. A safe and mutually enjoyable experience is something the characters value highly, and that is always obvious to the reader.