Halo of Flies
by Chad Lutzke
“Horror with heart” are three words that readers continually offer when describing Lutzke’s work. Stories that force us to take a deeper look beyond the surface. At humanity. At ourselves. Uncomfortable scenarios unique in great measure.
You haven’t been here before.
Here you have four different novellas written by Lutzke over the past three years—an omnibus of dark fiction that lends itself to the horror genre in a most nontraditional way––all with the interconnecting theme that is coming-of-age. Be it a 12-year-old latchkey kid, a curious high school graduate, an orphan with the face of a skull, or even an elderly man learning to live again.
You’ll find no usual suspects here. No killers, ghouls or ghosts. What you’ll find is unsettling in its own way. Relatable, humanistic fears. And if you happen to shed a tear along the way, that’s okay. You’re not alone.
OF FOSTER HOMES & FLIES – A neglected 12-year-old boy does nothing to report the death of his mother in order to compete in a spelling bee. A tragic coming-of-age tale of horror and drama in the setting of a hot New Orleans summer.
STIRRING THE SHEETS – An elderly funeral worker, struggling with the loss of his wife, finds an unnatural attraction to a corpse at work resembling his bride in her younger years.
A story of desperation, loneliness and letting go.
WALLFLOWER – After an encounter with a homeless man, a high school graduate becomes obsessed with the idea of doing heroin, challenging himself to try it just once. A bleak tale of addiction, delusion, and flowers.
SKULLFACE BOY – Having never been outside the walls of Gramm Jones Foster Care Facility, sixteen-year-old Levi leaves in the middle of the night with an empty backpack and a newfound lust for life. A journey that leads him into the arms of delusional newlyweds, drunkards, polygamists, the dangerous, and the batshit crazy. His destination? Hermosa Beach, California, where he’s told there is another like him, with the face of a skull.
Black Voltage, 52 copy hardcover edition