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Weldon Burge ‘Broken: Stories of Damaged Psyches’ Review

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Written by: Drake Morgan

Weldon Burge’s collection of short stories all share a similar theme. Each captures a broken (hence the title) and damaged mind struggling to cope with the horrors of the world. Each story reflects upon the consequences of what happens when that broken psyche can no longer hang on to the thin grip of reality and slips into the abyss.

The stories explore a wide range of mentally disturbed characters and their horrific decisions and choices. In “White Hell, Wisconsin,” we meet a deranged killer who takes advantage of a blizzard to brutally murder. “Sizzle” is a classic sci-fi/ horror “the voices made me do it” narrative. “Blue Eye Burn” is a disturbing look at the aftermath of Vietnam. Burge looks at the long-term impact that killing children had upon the soldiers through the eyes of a single vet and a single child. My personal favorites were “Permanent Detention” and “Another Highway Fatality.” “Detention” looks at the pressure cooker of high school from the point of view of a boy on the edge. “Fatality” explores the same theme, the pressure cooker of a violent society, through the eyes of a crime victim. The stories here have their violent edges, but none resort to gore/ splatter just for the sake of it. Instead each takes reader down a nightmarish descent of madness to the final, horrific conclusion. The stories leave the readers asking questions about society, violence, madness, and how or if any of the stories could have ended differently. They are tales from the insanity of real life. Each of the characters could be the person next to you at the bus stop or in the cubicle across the corridor.

The collection is not long. It is designed, from what I guess, as an introduction to Burge’s writing. It serves that purpose quite well and more. Head over to Amazon to grab your copy now, if you’re after the Kindle edition, it’s currently free!

Rating: 4/5

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6 comments on “Weldon Burge ‘Broken: Stories of Damaged Psyches’ Review

  1. I find the monstrosities of humankind’s lack of being humane to be one of my favorite type of horror stories .Often I tire of the zombies and vampire type tales in this genre.Perhaps that says something about me…Either way this seems like something I would like to read .just me…vitina

  2. Thanks for heads-up, Drake. Excellent review; I’ll definitely be checking this out. Do you happen to know who did the cover art for this edition? That is one eye-catching illustration.

  3. I thought the exact same things James. When I saw the cover I said ‘holy shit, I want to read it based on that cover alone!’

  4. The cover illustration is by Dan Verkys of Australia, and the cover design by Amy York. Awesome artwork and design!

  5. thanks for the heads up Weldon! I’ve got my first piece on deck for the year, it’ll be great if I can track Amy down! Does she have a Twitter that you know of?

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