Minnesota, 1955. Ten years ago, a husband and wife were brutally murdered, their son, age nine, committed for the crime. But was a monster the real killer? Now the son has been released, and former P.I. Henry Shaw, living under an assumed name, is pulled back on the job he fled years before after one too many bloody encounters with the shape-shifting monsters (as told in The Big Dark) and their as yet undiscovered agenda.

Tales of the Weird World War returns in a second volume featuring two short novels, mine and Bill Leisner’s Project G, as well as two bonus short stories by me—“The Creature in Jay Cooke Park” and “The Loneliness of Monsters”—previously published in Castle of Horror anthologies. The prior volume was set in the late forties, but the new book has jumped ahead to the midfifties. The excerpt below is from the opening scene of my novella.

They Came from Beyond

Forcing one eye open, Jimmy looked toward his bedroom door. It hadn’t stayed shut when he’d slammed it on the way in, instead bouncing back open a few inches. Shadows cast down the hallway from the light at the top of the stairs spilled in through the gap.
        The shadows stopped moving. “Anyone?”
       Jimmy opened his other eye. His mouth was so dry it was an effort to part his lips, and his voice came out a rasping whisper he could barely hear himself. “In here.”
       The shadows moved again. “God, I hope—”
       “Help!” It burst out of him, sudden and loud, as if it came from some other person.
       The door swung open slowly with a soft squeak, and a police officer leaned just past the door frame. There was blood on his shoes. His gun was in his hand, held out at waist level. Jimmy could only see him up to his badge.
       “Under here,” Jimmy said.
        The officer got onto his hands and knees, lowering his head until they were looking into each other’s eyes. Jimmy recognized him—he’d done a presentation at school last year. The man’s eyes widened as he looked Jimmy up and down. Jimmy could tell the officer was staring at the bloody hatchet, which had started knocking on the hardwood floor as Jimmy’s hands shook.
        “Sweet Mary,” the man said, his face gone pale. “Why’d you do it?”

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