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Reviewed by Nino Lobiladze for Readers' Favorite
Do not leave your toy skeleton unattended in a bathtub for more than 24 hours. If you dared to use a magical pan flute, at least don't forget the name of your familiar. Remember that mirrors always lie, even if you buy one in the Shoppe of Endarkenment right before Halloween. Take the store proprietor seriously when he warns you not to carve a jack-o’-lantern out of the most beautiful pumpkin you've ever seen. Consider that someone's remains are not collectible, even if you try to fill the gap in your lonely life. Also, do not play with a Nordic shaman's spirit, for it may become violent. The Shoppe of Endarkenment by Bradley Knefelkamp opened its doors in Brown’s Creek in the middle of the autumn to invite its inhabitants to the nightmare.
The six stories of The Shoppe of Endarkenment are a great gift for horror lovers as Bradley Knefelkamp explores the monsters lurking in the darkest corners of the human soul. An unexpected and often shocking twist at the end of every tale makes the book very engaging. In my understanding, the theme of loneliness is a linking element between the stories. For me, the first story, A House of Sticks and Stones, is the most captivating. Marvelously written, it warns of the fragility of the boundaries of friendship, which is another important topic of this anthology. I will not forget the amazingly developed characters of the teenagers, Sam and Jaden, and the careless games they played with the supernatural. In my opinion, this wonderful and scary collection would make an impressive TV show, thanks to the rich imagery created by the talented author.