Bats and Bones by Jeffery Hickey

Bats and Bones is IPPY award winning author Jeffrey Hickey’s second work for children. This collection of spooky tales for middle school aged children and above is a subtle masterpiece of fright and emotion. Hickey wrote all the stories, the lush music, and does all the voices for the audio book. His wife, Karen Kiser, contributes the cover art, along with some penny whistle and a little piano. The inside illustrations, layout and design are by Rachel Betz, who also designed Hickey’s first work for children, Wages Creek.

I was given a free copy of the Audiobook and a PDF in exchange for an honest review.

‘Horror’ isn’t really my genre. I haven’t had people insisting me to read a horror book going all “WOW!” So, when I saw that Bats and Bones was up for review, I approached Mr Hickey, and he was kind enough to send me an audiobook and a PDF for reference.

This was my first audiobook experience and I loved it! The voice modulations, the music, they all added to the whole spookiness of the short stories in it.

For horror stories like these,you need to experience them, not just read them off of a Kindle or paper. For me, the audiobook created the whole eerie atmosphere. If you can’t buy the audiobook, maybe you could have “Oooooooo . . .” going in the background while reading under a candle.

After you have everything set, you can dive into Bats and Bones, and say goodbye to all your friends and family and enter the world of the ghosts and the dead.

There are four short stories in this collection and each of them open up to a different aspect of the world of ghosts and how connected we can be with them in life. My favourites were The Barbershop and A Shade Of The Tree In The Light. I loved them because they had emotions rolling off of every sentence— which is really rare in a horror story— and it never deviated from the main theme. The Tillamook Rock was a little disappointing as I didn’t get it. I felt that Eye On Five was incomplete.

What I loved about Mr Hickey’s writing was his beautiful description. It warmed my heart and brought tears to my eyes.

Rating: 4/5

Recommendation: For all Horror story lovers!


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