Kiss and Kill - Jeff Gelb, Michael Garrett, Graham Masterton, Brian Hodge, Graham Watkins, Rex Miller, John B. Rosenman, Max Allan Collins, Terry Campbell, Ray Garton, Gary Brandner, Thomas Tessier, O'Neil de Noux, Nancy Holder, Deidra Cox, Lynne Gauger, T. Diane Slatton, Thomas S. Roche Graham Masterton's HEROINE gets this anthology off to a bang with a chilling and powerful story of one woman's strength. Cliff wonders how Anne can be in two places at once but is so thrilled just to be with her he doesn't question her sudden appearances in his room. As her sexual demands get fiercer and more dangerous he realizes all isn't as it appears. The ending is shocking and moving.

In Deidre Cox's PLAYERS a woman betrayed by her man seeks out a "filth eater" to cleanse this cheating slime ball of his hurting ways. It's a wonderfully nasty tale of ultimate revenge.

The Healing Touch by Terry Campbell is reminiscent of the wonderfully wicked GEEK LOVE by Katherine Dunn. It tells the story of a woman with so deep a compassion for the afflicted she goes to amazing lengths to make them feel better. She sees beauty where others see only deformities. Ultimately her compassion gets out of hand and her need to be needed causes her to do a very terrifying thing.

Grieving over the loss of his wife a man longs to have just ONE LAST TIME with his beloved in Michael Garrett's touching story of eternal love. This one's a tear jerker, at least for me, anyway.

Nancy Holder ends things on a most repulsive note with BONUS NOTCHES. This is the tale of two bored housewives who go to frightening lengths to out do each other. What begins as a simple game of sexual one-upmanship takes a darkly dangerous turn as the stakes are continually raised. Frightening, dark and dirty ~ what more could you want?

Other contributors include: Brian Hodge, Graham Watkins, Thomas Roche, Rex Miller, Lynn Gauger, John B. Rosenman, Max Allan Collins, T. Diane Slatton, Ray Garton, Michael Garrett, Gary Brander, Thomas Tessier, and O'Neil De Noux.

In a collection of this size I'm sure readers will find some of the stories ho-hum, or predictable, some nothing to get all hot and bothered about and long time horror fans might spot a cliché or two but the good far out weigh the mediocre. Several of the stories are not only powerful but also very moving, some are surprisingly touching and there are even a few lighthearted stories (well, as lighthearted as horror gets). Overall it's a great mix that works for me and definitely delivers what it promises on the blurb.