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Fears Unnamed (2004)
Fiction Review by The Gravedigger

Fears Unnamed (2004) This book consists of four novellas by Tim Lebbon, all dealing with mans' spiral towards death, whether it be struggling for survival in a terrifying future world or trying to overcome supernatural forces.In REMNANTS an archeologist calls for his long-time college friend to join him on an expedition in Egypt. He goes, only to find that his friend is the only one at the camp. He explains that he's searching for the City of the Dead and insists that his son is there. His son had died a year before of Leukemia, when he was away on a dig. His friend goes along with all this, even when the City mysteriously appears after a terrible sand storm. They encounter many ghosts as they descend deeper and deeper into the city. There's an extreme feeling of dread-the characters know what's in store but can't stop themselves.WHITE is the story of a group of survivors holed up in a huge house in England. The end of the world is at hand and people are dying in the outside world. There is four feet of snow outside so they're basically trapped in the house since the nearest town is several miles away. But one by one they are viciously torn apart by an unseen enemy, an enemy that can blend in with the snow. Is it some time of mutant animal or is it rampaging, insane humans doing the killing? The ending is surprising and chilling.In THE UNFORTUNATE a man is spared dying in a plane crash by creatures that might be angels or demons. He's given extraordinary luck-but the price is that everyone else around him, specifically his wife and son, get all the bad luck. He is an artist on the side-and soon his art career takes off and he's offered huge amounts of money at an exhibition. At the same time his wife's mother dies. A stranger warns him that he should refuse the angel/demon's gift of luck or else he'll lose his family. He does this and the plan horribly backfires. This is a tale of the guardian angel gone awry-and makes you really think what, exactly, luck is or isn't.NAMING OF PARTS is my favorite novella, about a husband, wife and son trying to survive in a world that's rapidly dying about them. The countryside looks as if it's covered in ash and the dead are coming to life, wanting to rip apart the living. Even animals are becoming zombies. They travel from their house to a nearby town where they think their daughter is staying, all the time trying to avoid getting killed. Even though things look hopeless they still charge on. Sure, this is familiar territory and reminds me of all those George Romero movies, and it's done well.Tim Lebbon's website is www.timlebbon.net
Availble from Leisure books at www.dorchesterpub.com

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