Afraid of the light by various authors – foreword by Alex North – review

Published by – Self published

Publication date – 21 April 2020

Source – review copy

Some people are scared of the dark. But it’s the light that exposes the secrets.

A young boy with nightmares faces up to his demons. A deathbed confession turns the world on its axis. A five-year-old watches his parents bury a body in the garden. A soldier returns from the war to find the horror isn’t yet over.

Afraid Of The Light brings the imagination of fourteen bestselling crime writers together in a collection that will keep you up all night. From a deadly campfire game to a holiday gone wrong, to an AI assistant with a motive and a love affair that can only end in murder, this is a gripping, twisty set of stories to send a shiver down your spine.

Afraid of the Light is a collection of 14 short stories, written by 14 talents crime and thriller authors. Not only does this showcase their talent, it also helps to raise money for The Samaritans, with all author proceeds being donated to the charity.

There are almost ghost stories, futuristic tales, road trips gone bad and tales of retribution. There were stories where I could foresee the outcome in some, though that brought as much enjoyment as not being able to predict what would happen. It was fun seeing if the stories would end as I had thought they would.

There are a variety of stories, enough to please any crime or thriller fan. Some are more traditional, others turn the idea of a thriller on it’s head.

There is a skill to writing a good short story. There has to be enough to engage the reader, the action has to be set up almost immediately and the narrative, though short, has to grab the reader’s attention and maintain it throughout. Luckily all of these stories did.

Afraid of the Light is not a long read, the reader can quickly fly through the pages. Each story is just enough to whet the appeitite. I shall certainly be looking to read more from each contributor in the near future.

This is a great collection of short stories, written to raise money for a great charity. This is a case where everyone is a winner. Recommended.


Are you Listening? – Adam Southward
Daddy Dearest – Dominic Nolan
Deathbed, Beth Dead – Elle Croft
Loveable Alan Atcliffe – S R Masters
Sleep Time – Phoebe Morgan
Coming Home – N J Mackay
Sausage Fingers – Victoria Selman
Just a Game – Rachael Blok
Drowning in Debt – Heather Critchlow
To Evil or Not to Evil – Jo Furniss
Sheep’s Clothing – Robert Scragg
Frantic – Clare Empson
Planting Nan – James Delargy
Shadow – Kate Simants

All author royalties from the sale of this anthology will be donated to the Samaritans.

Samaritans is a charity working across the UK and Ireland to reduce the number of people who take their own lives and help people who are struggling to cope with how they’re feeling or with life’s challenges. When life is difficult, Samaritans are here – day or night, 365 days a year.

You can call them for free on 116 123, email them at, or visit to find your nearest branch.

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