Indigenous Fiction has rarely received its due, despite no shortage of incredible Indigenous writers. Editors Shane Hawk and Theodore C. Van Alst Jr, with “Never Whistle At Night” seek to propel some of those incredible authors into the spotlight with an anthology of horror and dark fiction. All written by Indigenous writers and utilizing diverse and varied Indigenous culture and folklore.
WIth twenty-six stories, one could forgive a less effective story or two in the bunch. But every last story in this anthology is worth the reader’s eyes. All of them are intelligent, well-written, insightful and impactful. With so many differing styles, it is a testament to editorial skill how many the stories fit together.
Rebecca Roanhorse should be no stranger to readers of speculative fiction and her story “White Hills” explores the cost of assimilation in sweet, suburban life. This is the horror of Homeowners Association and expectations and the brutal price it extracts.
“Navajos Don’t Wear Elk Teeth” by Conley Jones is an LGBT story of colonization and theft. Told through the eyes of a young Navajo man named Joe who meets a new lover, our narrator soon notices that his paramour is far from a dream. His new lover soon turns abusive with a mounting level of danger that threatens to see Joe’s identity utterly stolen from him.
Norris Black weaves a tale of loss and melancholy with “Before I Go.” An impeccably written story of what the dead much achieve before they leave us, Black writes with a soulful sense of emotion about how grief can weigh us down.
One of the scariest in the book is Tiffany Morris’s “Night in the Chrysalis.” Taking place in a dark house with dolls and trauma. Morris delves into the psychology of identity and home, while crafting a compelling and frightening story.
Editor Shane Hawk includes a story called “Behind Colin’s Eyes,” about a father and son upon a hunting trip where things go wrong. An absolutely nightmarish story and one of the best that solidifie Hawk as a true name in horror.
A collection that is utterly worth the time for the reader. A classic that is not to be missed.