According to the author’s introduction, “Stage Whispers” contains the previously published Timmy Quinn material (“The Turtle Boy,” “The Hides,” “Vessels”) plus the new “Peregrine’s Tale.” This collection will be followed by the as-yet-incomplete “Nemesis,” which will finish Timmy’s saga. So this volume contains 4 of the ultimately 5 stories of Timmy Quinn, conveniently placed in one volume.
Amazingly lyrical, intensely suspenseful, poetic, descriptive in incredibly imagined ways: any story of any length by author Kealan Patrick Burke is equivalent to a mind-expanding and soul-inspiring walk through a literary Paradise-the man is just that excellent. I had never read “The Turtle Boy” (apparently my education in horror has been sadly neglected after all) so I was excited to find it as the frontispiece story of this collection-even more excited from the first few sentences. How do I describe it? Author Burke himself gives a nod to Lovecraftian traditions in his “expanded introduction.” “The Turtle Boy” has some of the flavor of Dan Simmons’ excellent “coming of age” horror “Summer of Night.” But anything to which Kealan Patrick Burke turns his pen is special-exceptional-awesome. If you’ve read any of the first three stories of Timmy Quinn, do buy this volume-it’s a keeper. If you’ve not encountered young Timmy, as had been the case for me, don’t hesitate-race to get it! If this is not a re-reader, multiple award winner, an utter joy and delight-then I don’t know my horror, and I believe I do. Do acquire “Stage Whispers” if you can acquire nothing else.