Fleeting Chills

Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories

Fiction - Horror
184 Pages
Reviewed on 09/25/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite

Fleeting Chills from Joseph C. Gioconda is a collection of thirty-three weird, creepy, short, and occasionally scary stories by various authors, including editor and publisher Joseph Gioconda. Thirty-three short stories would equal a mid-size to a large novel in overall length and number of words in times gone by. But, of the thirty-three stories, most of these stories are Flash Fiction—ultra-short, short stories that are making their way into mainstream readership and create a fantastic reading experience in two to three hours.

The writing styles of the different authors vary, but each of these stories is exceptionally well-edited and formatted. The stories themselves range from paranormal to supernatural to horror to a combination that I can only describe as "mind-bending." It may take two or three hours to read, but a number of the stories will have you thinking about them (particularly the conclusions) for days, if not weeks afterward. This is partially due to the "modus operandi" of flash fiction, which does not require a conclusive ending and results in the reader deciding for him/herself what the ending could/should be.

I loved all the stories, but these stood out for me: Lifetimes and Gaslighting (the ending of which speaks for the entire anthology!) by Joseph Gioconda, Babysitting by Sarah Putnam Ropes, Lured (outstanding horror) by Amy Yun Yu, and Blindman by Grace Elizabeth. Overall, thirty-three stories from ten outstanding authors, whose contributions make for an outstanding collection of flash fiction and "regular" short stories that will leave all readers "mind bent" and many, like me, "mind blown!" Excellent writing, editing, and production.

Anne-Marie Reynolds

Fleeting Chills by Joseph C Gioconda is a collection of Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories by various authors. Step into a dark, creepy world where people go on road trips and never return, where children speak in voices beyond their years, where near-death experiences aren’t as nice as you might have thought, and spirits want to marry living humans and won’t accept being told no. Jealous teens take revenge on their rivals, therapists encourage patients to jump, and Christmas isn’t such a happy time after all. Experience all this and more in this collection of short stories that will have chills running down your spine.

Fleeting Chills: Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror by Joseph C Gioconda and other authors is one of the creepiest books I have read in a while. Each story is short and to the point, packed with chills and leaving you shivering in terror. Some of my favorite stories were Alone, Santa and Babysitting, but every story will stay with you for a long time. Some are quite violent but only in keeping with the story, and there is a good mixture of pure horror and the paranormal. Although it is a horror anthology, it is entertaining and is the perfect read with Hallowe’en just around the corner. If you enjoyed The Twilight Zone you will thoroughly enjoy this – each story is written in a way that will play out in your mind's eye as you read, with every single detail in glorious technicolor. Highly enjoyable if you love horror stories.

K.C. Finn

Fleeting Chills: Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories is a collection of short story fiction works compiled by Joseph C. Gioconda. The collection includes stories by Gioconda himself as well as Grace Elizabeth, Amy Yun Yu, Isabel Rincón, and Petar Vrbich, amongst others. Set in the horror subgenre, the works are suited to a more mature audience due to the inclusion of scenes of violence and adult references. In this collection, we are treated to a wide selection of creepy moments from the minds of these talented authors, including long nights trapped in morbid places, deep dives on the DarkWeb, and malevolent spirits causing issues from beyond the grave.

Author and editor Joseph C. Gioconda delivers a hugely enjoyable selection of horror tales with just the right balance of weird and worrying moments. A particular favorite story of mine was ‘Jump’ by author Grace Elizabeth, which truly elevated the horror genre above simple monsters and proved that our psychological fears are far more terrifying than what’s out in the wider world. ‘Amish’ by Sarah Putnam Ropes was also one that I reread to find the deeper meanings and enjoy the build-up of the horror atmosphere over such a short space of time. From dialogue-driven tales of woe to poetic, lyrical narratives and intense, gritty prose moments, the work’s dark literary style perfectly matches the inviting formatting and imagery used throughout. Overall, I feel a wide variety of horror fans will all find something they can enjoy within the pages of Fleeting Chills: Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories. A recommended read indeed.

Trisha Dawn

Joseph C. Gioconda’s Fleeting Chills: Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories is a collection of spine-chilling stories. One is about a young man reading his little sister a bedtime horror story who suddenly experiences it first-hand. Another tells of a man who went on a family vacation with his girlfriend and brought home more than just spooky memories. There is also a tale about a group of friends who decide to play a game in the middle of the night, in a house with a very dark past. These are just several tales that you will find in this collection of horror stories written by several talented authors. Read this scary but exciting collection at your own peril!

Fleeting Chills: Weird, Creepy, Short & Scary Horror Stories is a collection of hair-raising stories that will certainly satisfy those who crave spooky things. I felt frightened and a bit jittery after reading these creepy, suspenseful tales. A few stories left quite an impact on me. One of them is “Followed” by Joseph C. Gioconda. The story seemed so real that it made me feel quite scared, and I found myself constantly looking over my shoulder. Another is “Blindman” by Grace Elizabeth. It scared my socks off. I could vividly picture the scenarios described in this story, and it made me feel so frightened I felt like I would have nightmares if I closed my eyes. Still, putting down the book was not an option because I was curious about what terrifying story would come next. Reading the first story already gave me goosebumps, and I was so tempted to wait until the morning to continue reading. However, the excitement and thrills that I felt while reading this collection made me finish the book in one sitting. Fleeting Chills is a scary yet gripping read. Thank you for the spooky and unforgettable experience!

Viga Boland

If there really was a little shop of horrors, I would expect to find Fleeting Chills by Joseph C. Gioconda on one of the shelves. This collection of thirty-three short stories will thrill those who love blood and gore, ghosts, deranged inventors, and unbridled imaginations going wild. Having read some of Gioconda’s work before, I was definitely curious to see what he could do in what is often a more difficult format, the short story, where writers have considerably less time to grab the reader, develop the plot, and send readers away happy. Well, when it comes to Gioconda’s writing, his creativity seems limitless.

My favorite story in the collection was Gioconda’s “The Dark Web.” Its plot and protagonist, Brandon, are chilling in their realism. Of all the stories, this one feels most complete with its beginning, middle and surprise ending. Another favorite was “Identity,” where a woman with a split personality introduces her other half to her boyfriend. Imagine his confusion! Because of my Catholic background, I got a lot out of “Confession,” though I’d hate to be the priest on the other side of the screen. “Inventor” was truly awful in that the inventor seeking patents had tested his deadly cures on humans. The aforementioned stories are all Gioconda’s, but “Song” by Isabel Rincon also impressed me with its allegorical depiction of people so immersed in their pursuits they stop living in the real world. “Amish” by Sarah Putnam Ropes will appeal to those who believe spirits live with and around us, and there are several more stories along those lines for the ghost hunters amongst us. All the stories are well-written, concise, and enjoyable if horror is your cup of tea. But be on the lookout for those who would gaslight others while they are being gaslit, as in the closing story of Fleeting Chills. What a truly spine-tingling collection!