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Book Review: Mental Shrillness by Todd Russell

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Mental Shrillness is a book of short, disturbing stories.  Each one a bit more bizzarre than the last.  Some are creepy, some gory and some leave you shaking your head and asking what was going through the author’s head when he wrote the story.

Mental Shrillness contains six stories:

“Memorial Day Descent”

“Pains in the Glass”

“Dead Warmed Over”

“Falling The Bobbitt Way”

“Dueling Eyes”

“The Illusion”

My favorite was “Dead Warmed Over” which tells the story of Ben and his wife Jackie.  Jackie accidentally died at Ben’s hands and he is beside himself with grief.  He tries everything he can to attempt to bring her back to life.  He can’t imagine his life without her.  

For me it was a twisted love story. Very twisted and I question my sanity for enjoying it so much!  I found myself asking if Ben truly was that deeply in love with Jackie or was he just a pervert who let things go to far.  Was Jackie a victim of a horrible accident or is Ben a closet killer? I won’t tell but of all the stories this one sticks with me. I was thinking about it long after I had moved on to the other stories.

The end of the book has a chapter called “Mental Shrillness Notes” which are notes from our author explaining how these stories came about. I enjoyed the author’s notes as much as I did the book.  I love when authors give us behind the scenes details.  The author explains where he started and yes, he did tell what he was thinking when he wrote each story.  I found all of the information very interesting.

If you enjoy offbeat horror stories you will like Mental Shrillness.

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