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Night as a Catalyst: A Collection of Dark Fiction

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As beautiful as the night can be, it often plays a role in something more foreboding, supplying the catalyst for things both terrifying and imaginative. Utilizing this hallowed time of the day, author Chad Lutzke has written and compiled 18 short stories, with creature features, sleep deprivation, hiding the undead, revenge, cannibalism, morbid habits, and executions of ka As beautiful as the night can be, it often plays a role in something more foreboding, supplying the catalyst for things both terrifying and imaginative. Utilizing this hallowed time of the day, author Chad Lutzke has written and compiled 18 short stories, with creature features, sleep deprivation, hiding the undead, revenge, cannibalism, morbid habits, and executions of karma being just a handful of the themes covered in this book. Read on and discover what the mind produces when using the night as a catalyst. What others are saying about Lutzke's work: "Chad Lutzke is an excitingly fresh emerging voice in the horror scene. His writing pulls you in, and his stories are chilling and stay with you well after a thoroughly satisfying read!" ~ Nicholas Grabowsky, Black Bed Sheet Books & author of Halloween IV "Chad Lutzke has an awesome grasp of descriptive writing...Brilliant malevolence! He is a true master at his craft." ~Blaze McRob, Bram Stoker Award nominee "Lutzke is a student of the horror genre with a rich voice that needs to be heard." ~ author, Terry M. West "Lutzke's writing is personal, detailed and often heart breaking in a terrifying." ~ Matt Molgaard, Horror Novel Reviews "Chad Lutzke is an emerging and exciting dark author with a firm grasp on the genre. His shadows have drastically different heartbeats, unique souls, but are unified by their dark charm and bleak shrouds." ~Zachary Walters, The Mouths of Madness Podcast "Lutzke has a way with words that merges horror and compassion in a single sentence. Reminiscent of Robert McCammon." ~Joe Mynhardt, Crystal Lake Publishing "Unique and enveloping. At times playful and alternately existential, though always invoking empathy for the protagonist's predicament. Chad Lutzke's writing is doubtlessly bleak, yet with an odd sense of hope." ~ author, James Ferace "Chad's writing is a trip to the buffet of horror. No stone left unturned." ~ Blaine Cook, vocalist for The Accused, Toe Tag, & The Fartz


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As beautiful as the night can be, it often plays a role in something more foreboding, supplying the catalyst for things both terrifying and imaginative. Utilizing this hallowed time of the day, author Chad Lutzke has written and compiled 18 short stories, with creature features, sleep deprivation, hiding the undead, revenge, cannibalism, morbid habits, and executions of ka As beautiful as the night can be, it often plays a role in something more foreboding, supplying the catalyst for things both terrifying and imaginative. Utilizing this hallowed time of the day, author Chad Lutzke has written and compiled 18 short stories, with creature features, sleep deprivation, hiding the undead, revenge, cannibalism, morbid habits, and executions of karma being just a handful of the themes covered in this book. Read on and discover what the mind produces when using the night as a catalyst. What others are saying about Lutzke's work: "Chad Lutzke is an excitingly fresh emerging voice in the horror scene. His writing pulls you in, and his stories are chilling and stay with you well after a thoroughly satisfying read!" ~ Nicholas Grabowsky, Black Bed Sheet Books & author of Halloween IV "Chad Lutzke has an awesome grasp of descriptive writing...Brilliant malevolence! He is a true master at his craft." ~Blaze McRob, Bram Stoker Award nominee "Lutzke is a student of the horror genre with a rich voice that needs to be heard." ~ author, Terry M. West "Lutzke's writing is personal, detailed and often heart breaking in a terrifying." ~ Matt Molgaard, Horror Novel Reviews "Chad Lutzke is an emerging and exciting dark author with a firm grasp on the genre. His shadows have drastically different heartbeats, unique souls, but are unified by their dark charm and bleak shrouds." ~Zachary Walters, The Mouths of Madness Podcast "Lutzke has a way with words that merges horror and compassion in a single sentence. Reminiscent of Robert McCammon." ~Joe Mynhardt, Crystal Lake Publishing "Unique and enveloping. At times playful and alternately existential, though always invoking empathy for the protagonist's predicament. Chad Lutzke's writing is doubtlessly bleak, yet with an odd sense of hope." ~ author, James Ferace "Chad's writing is a trip to the buffet of horror. No stone left unturned." ~ Blaine Cook, vocalist for The Accused, Toe Tag, & The Fartz

30 review for Night as a Catalyst: A Collection of Dark Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Farrah

    A book of 18 short horror stories. Chad Lutzke is a skilled writer but I found these stories too simple. Although the mature content in some of them tells me this book is intended for adults I found it written similar to the kids book Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark. The last story was really good. I wish they'd all been at that level.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Paul Ataua

    I really like Chad Lutzke’s writing. I love his short novels, both the story-lines and the style. This collection of short stories, however, never really did it for me. The stories were of variable quality. I didn’t find any bad ones, but I also didn’t find any outstanding ones either. A good pre-sleep read, but little more than that.

  3. 4 out of 5

    David Watson

    Night As A Catalyst by Chad Lutzke is a collection of 18 horror stories that are short but pack a punch. Most of these stories would be considered flash fiction and while I admit to not liking short horror stories a lot, I thought the atmosphere in these stories was really good. Another thing I liked was at the end of each story Chad Lutzke tells where he got the idea from, which made each story more personal. One of the stories in this book that I really liked was One Up A Tree. It’s about two h Night As A Catalyst by Chad Lutzke is a collection of 18 horror stories that are short but pack a punch. Most of these stories would be considered flash fiction and while I admit to not liking short horror stories a lot, I thought the atmosphere in these stories was really good. Another thing I liked was at the end of each story Chad Lutzke tells where he got the idea from, which made each story more personal. One of the stories in this book that I really liked was One Up A Tree. It’s about two hikers lost in the woods that come upon a cabin. When the owner comes home and finds the two people, he shoots first and doesn’t ask questions. One gets away but is soon trapped by the sadistic cabin owner. For such a short story I was surprised at the depth of the characters here. In the beginning, we find out that the two hikers are friends that drifted apart over the years and are trying to rekindle their friendship. Being able to relate to them makes it that much scarier when they meet the cabin owner. There is a scene in One Up A Tree where the cabin owner gives one of the hikers some meat. I knew where the scene was going when the hiker starts to eat but it was still terrifying to think about. A good flash fiction piece here if you are a cat lover is Collecting Cats. It’s about someone who finds injured cats and nurses them back to health. What makes this story interesting is how the cats react when they find out about the one injuring them. This book has a lot of good short ideas and another story that follows this formula is Moving Made Easy which is a story about teleportation. This one has a really good Twilight Zone ending. My favorite story here is Birthday Suit. It follows a group of friends who are at a house for a birthday slumber party, they go up into a tree house and one of the kids sees something amazing and horrifying. This one mixes nostalgia and horror. In particular, I liked the conversation the kids have in the tree house as they look into other people’s homes. They talk about things like what old people do all day, girls at school and of course horror movies. This one reminded me of sleepovers I had as a kid and the shock ending made it a great tale. Night As A Catalyst is a perfect book for horror fans who like to read but don’t have a lot of time. I say that because each story here is quick, to the point and packs a good scare. As a fan of the genre what more could you ask for, this book is a lot of fun and a quick read. If you like horror anthologies then Chad Lutzke’s book is one you shouldn’t pass on.

  4. 4 out of 5

    John J Questore

    One of the great things about Facebook is the opportunity to meet people with the same interests that you have - and as you all know, one of my main interests is Horror. I've met some great people in the industry, from publishers, to editors, and finally authors. And I've become good friends with a number of those people (at least I hope so). And writing a review for a friend can be stressful and nerve-wracking; I am brutally honest and I don't want to hurt feelings if the stories I read aren't One of the great things about Facebook is the opportunity to meet people with the same interests that you have - and as you all know, one of my main interests is Horror. I've met some great people in the industry, from publishers, to editors, and finally authors. And I've become good friends with a number of those people (at least I hope so). And writing a review for a friend can be stressful and nerve-wracking; I am brutally honest and I don't want to hurt feelings if the stories I read aren't good. However, that's not something I have to worry about when I read Chad Lutzke's work. Night as a Catalyst: A Horror Anthology is an excellent example of just how versatile Chad can be. From horrifying, to touching, to real, and then to bizarre - Chad runs the gambit here. There is something for everyone. One of the best things about this book is that Chad takes a few more seconds to give the reader a little background on where the story came from - something I love to know. So, as best I can, let me give you a rundown of the stories. Keep in mind that some of them are only two pages long so a synopsis will be difficult, but I'll try not to spoil them. 1) One Up a Tree - As a Scouter, I've done my fair share of camping and hiking, so this story hits home. Two friends get more than they bargain for when they get lost in the woods on a fishing trip. A nice way to start the book. My only issue with the story is that most people, even inexperienced outdoorsmen, wouldn't fill their canteens with lake water; you're just inviting stomach issues. 2) Collecting Cats - As a cat lover, this story was hard to read. Mutilated cats keep turning up at a house where the owner fixes them up, and takes care of them. One night, the person responsible for the mutilations is discovered; and the cats do what they feel necessary to help karma. 3) Mama's Wooden Babies - I have to say, this one wasn't my favorite. I know what Chad was going for - an homage to the old EC comics - but I don't think it worked. A man and his daughters walk into a curiosity shop and see some wooden dolls that the girls want. After hearing a strange story of their creation, they walk out of the store with all of them - under the watchful eyes of the dolls mother. 4) Moving Made Easy - I liked this one. Chad takes on SciFi with an interesting twist on teleportation. 5) Coming Undone - Another common theme - voodoo - with a Lutzke twist. While you may figure out who the true antagonist is, you won't see the ending coming. 6) Birthday Suit - One of the themes that Chad excels in writing is "coming of age" stories. Chad writes stories about kids that are believable - not like an adult writing about how kids "might" be. Two kids are having a sleepover in a treehouse. What Kyler sees in the middle of the night is enough to give you nightmares. If you see a strange light outside your window, ignore it ! Pull the covers over your head and forget what you think you saw. Nice take on the "alien" theme. 7) A Hand With the Harvest - This one had a different meaning for me than I think Chad had in mind. I am a HUGE New Jersey Devils fan (hockey) and having grown up on Long Island, NY, am very familiar with the legend of the Jersey Devil. This is all I pictured when reading this story. But I can bet most readers won't know what I mean. 8) Apple Sauce - Halloween karma at it's best. 9) Discerning the Adversary - A very rich man subsidizes a military experiment that backfires on him in a spectacularly gruesome way. 10) One For the Road - I want to say that this is Chad's "sell-out" story. I was hoping I could get through an entire anthology without a zombie story. That theme has been done to death (pardon the pun) and there is nothing to it anymore. Unless you decide to write a (in Chad's own words) "What-if-Anne-Frank-were-a-zombie-instead" story - then you have a story that I can forgive Chad for including. 11) Peepshow - Ever wonder what it would be like to wake up on an alien operating table? Wonder no more. 12) Chow - From Chad's notes on this one, I can tell it wasn't/isn't one of his favorites; so I'm not sure why he included it. What I can say is that I'm glad he did since it's actually one of my favorites! It's a classic story of karma kicking someone's backside, but it has a definite Tales from the Crypt vibe about it. Oh, and I'm glad he didn't choose Willard as the main character's name (read the story - you'll understand). 13) Quilted - This was an extremely short story on self-preservation and regret. 14) Deprivation - Wow, this one was just weird with a capital 'W' - but in a good way. You'll never look at a toothache the same way again. And you won't see the ending coming. 15) Feeling Blue - What a sad story. A robot with self-awareness wants to know what sorrow is. And when he does, he can't handle it. A strong statement on suicide awareness. 16) Quitters Never Win - An interesting take on addiction and what people are willing to look past in order to get their alcohol, tobacco, and pharmaceuticals. 17) Torn - Another one of my favorites. A man sees a woman and it is love at first sight (like when I met my wife, Elaine). Only she pays no attention to him - for reasons that aren't so obvious. It's funny, while reading it I kept saying to myself, "This has a very Poe-like feel to it" - only to find that's exactly what Chad said was the case. 18) Self-Immolation - I tried to look up a word in the thesaurus that would help me describe this story without using the cliche words of "outstanding", "amazing", etc. I don't think that word has been created yet, since I couldn't find it. I truly loved this story. Yes, it's a vampire story, but it's one of a vampire who is just done with the whole "immortal" life and decides to rid the world of his horrible ways - by finally gazing upon the sun. It was beautifully written and quite sad. 19) The Haunting of the Squirrel - This is a bonus story written by Chad's son, Nekoda, when he was 9 years old. For a 9 year old, it was a well written, fully thought out, story of a zombie squirrel. Well done. So there you have it. 19 stories with something for everyone. Chad has proven that there isn't anything he can't write about. Pick this one up if you're looking for a nice diversion.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Richard Schiver

    Overall not a bad read. There were a couple of stories that were so so, but a few that were a hell of a good read, balancing the book between the two extremes.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Shadow Girl

    I went on a binge and read everything by this author in just a matter of days. I don't know where all the reviews disappeared to 😣 A collection of great short stories, including a zombie story that didn't piss me off! (Author's Note - "I hated the idea of contributing another zombie story to the already-saturated undead market [...]" I highlighted it so I'd remember to give you a high five for that!) Also includes bits of hometown horrors and lore - I love reading all my #MichiganMadmen

  7. 5 out of 5

    David Watson

    Night As A Catalyst by Chad Lutzke is a collection of 18 horror stories that are short but pack a punch. Most of these stories would be considered flash fiction and while I admit to not liking short horror stories a lot, I thought the atmosphere in these stories was really good. Another thing I liked was at the end of each story Chad Lutzke tells where he got the idea from, which made each story more personal. One of the stories in this book that I really liked was One Up A Tree. It’s about two h Night As A Catalyst by Chad Lutzke is a collection of 18 horror stories that are short but pack a punch. Most of these stories would be considered flash fiction and while I admit to not liking short horror stories a lot, I thought the atmosphere in these stories was really good. Another thing I liked was at the end of each story Chad Lutzke tells where he got the idea from, which made each story more personal. One of the stories in this book that I really liked was One Up A Tree. It’s about two hikers lost in the woods that come upon a cabin. When the owner comes home and finds the two people, he shoots first and doesn’t ask questions. One gets away but is soon trapped by the sadistic cabin owner. For such a short story I was surprised at the depth of the characters here. In the beginning, we find out that the two hikers are friends that drifted apart over the years and are trying to rekindle their friendship. Being able to relate to them makes it that much scarier when they meet the cabin owner. There is a scene in One Up A Tree where the cabin owner gives one of the hikers some meat. I knew where the scene was going when the hiker starts to eat but it was still terrifying to think about. A good flash fiction piece here if you are a cat lover is Collecting Cats. It’s about someone who finds injured cats and nurses them back to health. What makes this story interesting is how the cats react when they find out about the one injuring them. This book has a lot of good short ideas and another story that follows this formula is Moving Made Easy which is a story about teleportation. This one has a really good Twilight Zone ending. My favorite story here is Birthday Suit. It follows a group of friends who are at a house for a birthday slumber party, they go up into a tree house and one of the kids sees something amazing and horrifying. This one mixes nostalgia and horror. In particular, I liked the conversation the kids have in the tree house as they look into other people’s homes. They talk about things like what old people do all day, girls at school and of course horror movies. This one reminded me of sleepovers I had as a kid and the shock ending made it a great tale. Night As A Catalyst is a perfect book for horror fans who like to read but don’t have a lot of time. I say that because each story here is quick, to the point and packs a good scare. As a fan of the genre what more could you ask for, this book is a lot of fun and a quick read. If you like horror anthologies then Chad Lutzke’s book is one you shouldn’t pass on.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Zakk Madness

    Night as a Catalyst is a highly entertaining and recommended collection gathering 18 of Mr. Lutzke's short stories & flash fiction with a bonus 19th short written by his son. I really enjoy Chad's writing style, fairly straight forward and character driven, each tale being populated with fleshed out personalities and ushered briskly along by solid plotting and storytelling. Which is a nice change of pace from the all flash/ no substance stories that have seemed to catch on in popularity with rea Night as a Catalyst is a highly entertaining and recommended collection gathering 18 of Mr. Lutzke's short stories & flash fiction with a bonus 19th short written by his son. I really enjoy Chad's writing style, fairly straight forward and character driven, each tale being populated with fleshed out personalities and ushered briskly along by solid plotting and storytelling. Which is a nice change of pace from the all flash/ no substance stories that have seemed to catch on in popularity with readers. When Chad does pull a rare sleight-of-hand, it catches you off guard as you are fully invested in the narrative and characters. With the twist feeling rather natural and not deceptive. It would be quite easy to envision these as entries in an anthology series, a la Tales from the Darkside. The pieces that stuck with me after the lights were turned off were: -One Up A Tree -Mama's Wooden Babies -Birthday Suit -One For The Road -Self-Immolation With my favorite overall piece being Deprivation Check out Night as a Catalyst, you won't be disappointed. The Mouths of Madness Podcastshow www.facebook.com/themouthsofmadness *4.5/5 *I received and read a review copy, these are my honest feelings.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Andre

    "This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com." This is my first foray into Chad Lutzke's world and I liked it a lot. There are some really nice horror stories in this audiobook. Short stories are difficult to execute well, since there is not much time to put the reader/listener in situation or to develop the characters and plot, but mr. Lutzke has a knack for delivering a tightly packaged story. "This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com." This is my first foray into Chad Lutzke's world and I liked it a lot. There are some really nice horror stories in this audiobook. Short stories are difficult to execute well, since there is not much time to put the reader/listener in situation or to develop the characters and plot, but mr. Lutzke has a knack for delivering a tightly packaged story. Joe Hempel's narration is spot on. There were one or two stories I didn't like as much, but that is to be expected since the author explores many subgenres of horror. One of my favorites was "One up a tree".

  10. 4 out of 5

    Shannon Everyday

    It's always a wonderful feeling when you read a horror anthology, and wish for more, and Chad Lutzke's Night as a Catalyst, definitely fits this bill. From tales of vengeance, horror, sci-fi, robots, vampires, zombies and more, this anthology has the perfect mix of stories for fans of those genres. Particular favorites: Moving Made Easy (a nicely done time travel tale), Birthday Suit (a fun bit of sci-fi horror), Chow (a landlord with attitude), Deprivation (trucker with no sleep due to a tooth) It's always a wonderful feeling when you read a horror anthology, and wish for more, and Chad Lutzke's Night as a Catalyst, definitely fits this bill. From tales of vengeance, horror, sci-fi, robots, vampires, zombies and more, this anthology has the perfect mix of stories for fans of those genres. Particular favorites: Moving Made Easy (a nicely done time travel tale), Birthday Suit (a fun bit of sci-fi horror), Chow (a landlord with attitude), Deprivation (trucker with no sleep due to a tooth), and Feeling Blue (a tale of a robot and creator). A perfect touch in this anthology are the sections at the end of each story where Lutzke offers insight into where the ideas for each of his stories came from or were inspired by.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Betty Rocksteady

    I love short fiction. I've always loved horror collections, and this one is a gem. Chad gives a variety of styles here, from the strange and unsettling to more classic takes on horror. There's also a huge variety in lengths, from the bite-sized chills to more drawn out plotlines. The author excels at both. Flash fiction can be tough to pull off effectively, but even with some stories clocking in at less than 500 words, every word counts. My favorite in the collection is probably Collecting Cats. I love short fiction. I've always loved horror collections, and this one is a gem. Chad gives a variety of styles here, from the strange and unsettling to more classic takes on horror. There's also a huge variety in lengths, from the bite-sized chills to more drawn out plotlines. The author excels at both. Flash fiction can be tough to pull off effectively, but even with some stories clocking in at less than 500 words, every word counts. My favorite in the collection is probably Collecting Cats. After each story is a brief explanation about the inspirations behind it, which I always find interesting to read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kristen Rooney

    I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via AudiobookBlast dot com. I love short stories as much as I love novels. This collection was full of surprises and creepy things. While I wouldn't necessarily categorize this "horror" I did thoroughly enjoy theses stories. I would definitely want to read more from this author.

  13. 4 out of 5

    FU FU

    NIGHT AS A CATALYST is a very diverse mix of short stories of varying lengths and styles. Lutzke presents everything from cannibal thrillers, to aliens, zombies, psychos, ghosts, and vampires. His first-person narratives, such as in "Collecting Cats," are reminiscent in tone to the works of Poe and Hawthorne and were the most effective for me. This is certainly an enjoyable and well-written collection of weird tales.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Brian Mcclain

    Received audiobook in exchange for honest review from narrator. Odd Horror Anthology with an interesting perspective on some pretty original circumstances. Lutzke has a number of very short stories and a couple with more substance but they're all pretty effective. Had to skip part of one because it was grossing me out a bit, but I'll give him credit for that as well.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

    I read Of Foster Homes and Flies and loved it. I was anxious to read more by the author and I love short stories so this seemed like the best option. The stories are ok but I didn't see the same elements that I loved in Of Foster Homes and Flies. The stories are ok but not particularly memorable.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Whit

    Longer ones are better than the "flash" ones. I do like how in he audible format he describes what made him write each.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Brennan LaFaro

    Chad Lutzke is a guy who simultaneously gets a lot of love from the horror community, and deserves more. I kept seeing his name pop up as someone I needed to read, so I picked up Of Foster Homes and Flies and Night As A Catalyst, and started on the latter. The revised and expanded edition includes 23 pieces made up of short flash fiction, longer stories, and even a piece written by Chad's son. Many of them pulled from the early beginning of his writing career, some even from his first attempts a Chad Lutzke is a guy who simultaneously gets a lot of love from the horror community, and deserves more. I kept seeing his name pop up as someone I needed to read, so I picked up Of Foster Homes and Flies and Night As A Catalyst, and started on the latter. The revised and expanded edition includes 23 pieces made up of short flash fiction, longer stories, and even a piece written by Chad's son. Many of them pulled from the early beginning of his writing career, some even from his first attempts at story composition from the 1990's. Lutzke is known as an author who makes his reader feel and there are plenty of stories here that meet that criteria. They Die Easy is about a boy striving to find acceptance with a bit of a dark twist. Splitting Pairs takes a swing at boys-will-be-boys culture and is one of the best stories in the collection. One for the Road makes us a fly on the wall while a young boy copes with his grandfather's transition into, and captivity as, a zombie. Self-Immolation takes on the none-too-easy task of getting the reader to feel pity for a vampire. Included in the back of the book are some pretty extensive author's notes, which not only give you a bit of background on the stories, but provide some insight into Lutzke's writing style. I was surprised how many examples there were in the collection that stemmed from Lutzke finding a photograph and challenging himself to come up with a piece of short fiction to go with it. Some of the most interesting examples are Deprivation, Feeling Blue, The Damned Thing, and Coming Undone. There is such a variety represented in this collection, and while all the stories fit generally into horror, we never really visit a trope more than once. We've got monsters, zombies, aliens, vampires, the unknown, body horror, genies, serial killers, you name it. Some stories are gruesome, some are more subtle. Some contain dense prose, others are more simple, or rely on dialogue between children. It's easy to recommend this collection because it seems like there's a bit for anyone and everyone. I'm settling at 4 stars because there are a few stories that I would skip on a reread, but still such a solid collection, and I can't wait to dive into Lutzke's novels and novellas.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Chad Lutzke is an excellent writer, and he really shines in many of the stories in this collection, even those that are very brief. My favorites include: Deprivation This is a nasty little tale, at times almost unbearably gross, and it definitely had me cringing in spots. That being said, it was also excellent. It was gritty and grimy and gory, but also wonderfully written. Collecting Cats As someone who loves animals - I have several cats of my own - the story was hard to read, but I loved the en Chad Lutzke is an excellent writer, and he really shines in many of the stories in this collection, even those that are very brief. My favorites include: Deprivation This is a nasty little tale, at times almost unbearably gross, and it definitely had me cringing in spots. That being said, it was also excellent. It was gritty and grimy and gory, but also wonderfully written. Collecting Cats As someone who loves animals - I have several cats of my own - the story was hard to read, but I loved the ending (view spoiler)[where the cats get revenge on their tormentor (hide spoiler)] . Splitting Pairs also had a hard scene to read for an animal lover to read, but it was an excellent story of comeuppance, a teenage predator hoisted by his own petard. Mama's Wooden Babies is one of the briefest tales in the collection but also one of the best written; I could vividly imagine the strange shop the family in this story wanders into. One for the Road I'm not usually a big zombie story fan, but I really liked this tale of a boy whose family is keeping his undead grandfather in the attic. A Hand with the Harvest was another brief tale with vivid imagery and a cool creature. I would actually have liked this one to be a little longer; I could have stayed a little bit longer in its universe. Birthday Suit I'm also not generally a big alien story fan, but this one featured strong characters and a neat twist. The Dust Collector is the only poem in the collection, but I loved the way it hinted at just desserts being served to an abusive parent. Quilted was only two pages long, but it had some of the creepiest imagery in the whole collection. This was my first book by Lutzke, although I'd read a couple of his stories elsewhere. I definitely will be reading more by him (in fact The Neon Owl is sitting on my to read cart right now). I look forward to diving into more of his work.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    Chad Lutzke has become one of my favorite authors this year, and for good reason. I loved his novellas OUT BEHIND THE BARN (with John Boden), THE SAME DEEP WATER AS YOU, and STIRRING THE SHEETS. I actually count myself lucky because I've yet to read several of his books, which means I'll have more to tide me over until he releases new material. I adored his collection SPICY CONSTELLATION & OTHER RECIPES, and have never regretted becoming a patron of his early on in my reading of his work. NIGHT Chad Lutzke has become one of my favorite authors this year, and for good reason. I loved his novellas OUT BEHIND THE BARN (with John Boden), THE SAME DEEP WATER AS YOU, and STIRRING THE SHEETS. I actually count myself lucky because I've yet to read several of his books, which means I'll have more to tide me over until he releases new material. I adored his collection SPICY CONSTELLATION & OTHER RECIPES, and have never regretted becoming a patron of his early on in my reading of his work. NIGHT AS A CATALYST was recently revised and expanded, and I thoroughly enjoyed this mix of short stories and flash fiction. My top five favorites (in no order) are: -Deprivation -Splitting Pairs -One for the Road -One up a Tree -Self-Immolation Something that I enjoy is when the author includes story notes, divulging a bit more information on the background of each tale. This really deepens the reading experience for me. Chad included these notes in SPICY CONSTELLATION as well, and this was something I truly loved having access to in each collection. I know I sound like a broken record, but if you're looking for horror with heart, look no further than Chad Lutzke's writing. Until his new novel releases next month, I'll be savoring his words in one of the few books I've got waiting on my shelf.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Well Read Beard

    I love Lutzke's work - there wasn't a single story in this book that I didn't like. This might be my favorite short story collection that I read in 2018. Some of my favorites were the super short flash fiction style stories - Coming Undone, Mama's Wooden Babies, Apple Sauce. Collecting Cats was great. I also really liked One For The Road. I think I have read everything that Chad has out in paper at this point, and I am a fan for life - if he prints it, I buy it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Liane Abe

    Chad Lutzke Never Disappoints! I loved this collection of short stories and flash fiction. Creepy, twisty, sinister, and FUN! Among the darkness of these stories you can always find heartfelt emotion and human kindness within. This is what I like about this author. Stories that can scare you and make you cry...a great combination that isn't easy to find.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Serenity

    Good read I always enjoy stories by this writer. Full of talent he is. He has a beautiful way with words, and gets the reader hooked quickly in his books. A definite recommend!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    Once again, the stories are amazing. I am a huge fan of flash fiction so was glad to see a few of those gems. Although that bonus story, I may be looking at my new favorite author 😎

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kristyn

    There is a great variety of horror short stories and flash fiction in this collection. As always, Chad Lutzke packs a lot of story into his short works.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Stevens

    Night as a Catalyst is a horror anthology by writer Chad Lutzke. It includes 18 short stories, and after each story, Chad gives a brief description of his inspiration for that particular piece of work. I thought it would be the perfect book for me to use to write my first review for audiobook reviewer because it includes a lot of key words I enjoy: short stories, fantasy / science fiction, and horror. Most of the stories were incredibly short. Little bursts of great ideas for stories with not mu Night as a Catalyst is a horror anthology by writer Chad Lutzke. It includes 18 short stories, and after each story, Chad gives a brief description of his inspiration for that particular piece of work. I thought it would be the perfect book for me to use to write my first review for audiobook reviewer because it includes a lot of key words I enjoy: short stories, fantasy / science fiction, and horror. Most of the stories were incredibly short. Little bursts of great ideas for stories with not much follow up. Chad shows us he has some fantastic ideas for stories, that he has a talent with words and imagery, but the stories end almost before they begin. The descriptions included after each story was an interesting idea, but I would have personally preferred it be left to the end of the book for the who were interested . To be fair, I know other writers have included assides about where their inspiration came from, including Stephen King and Orson Scott Card, two of my favorite writers. However I think it’s better suited as a bonus at the end for readers, like those who are writers themselves, who may want to know where the inspiration came from. Others (like myself) would rather just hear the stories. Unfortunately, because I listen to audiobooks on the go, I was not able to write down the names of all Chad’s stories, but there were a few I really enjoyed. I tried finding a table of contents online but was unsuccessful, so a description of two of my favorites will have to do. One was about stray cats who kept turning up on a mans porch with missing limbs. Another was about two boys spending the night in a tree house , and they witness something horrific. I thoroughly enjoyed both stories and would love to hear an expanded version of them! I’ll have to leave it at that, no spoilers here! Joe Hempel was the narrator of this anthology, and he did a good job. I didn’t notice any subtle changes of voice for different characters, which is something I think an excellent narrator does, but there also weren’t many opportunities for that . He had a clear and pleasant voice, and great fluidity. I can see why 4 authors have quite recently trusted him to narrate their books. Overall, I give this anthology 3.5 stars. It was enjoyable and had some great ideas. A bit of twilight zone for the imagination!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lindy

  27. 5 out of 5

    Daniel C.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Dave

  29. 4 out of 5

    Chad

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sunflower Jamison

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