The Farmhouse

Country Tales of Terror

Fiction - Anthology
158 Pages
Reviewed on 11/01/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Lit Amri for Readers' Favorite

"Do you fear yourself as you truly are? Come. I am the Lich beyond name. Come. Join the Coven. There is much to be done." Mikayla Meyers invites readers to let their imaginations wander in the eerie world of The Farmhouse (Country Tales of Terror). Ten stories are set in the Maryland countryside, showcasing ordinary people with common challenges in life that turn into something grotesque and, in some parts, unexplainable. In Home, a 38-year-old teacher inherits his deceased father's house, reminiscing his challenging childhood as his anxiety conjures up frightening hallucinations. In The Lich, a couple finds an ancient creature half-buried in the earth; one of them makes a life-changing decision. The story continues in The Witch, as a man discovers the reason behind his older brother's downfall to madness and proceeds to The Coven, where a young girl finds her place in a new 'family' that makes her feel wanted.

The characters are well-developed and memorable, always a commendable feat in short stories. However, the imaginative premises and plots stand out more, and resolutions are not all easily given. A young college student discovers that her cousin has a shocking secret in Doppelgangers, a fascinating story that touches on familial relationships and the burden of expectations. Schneller Geis is one of my favorites; a woman survived a vicious Snallygaster's attack, a half-bird and half-reptile mythical monster that sucks the blood of its victims. Yet, even the Snallygaster couldn't measure up to the protagonist's mother, who is the ultimate winner in this survival tale. Disturbing it may be but I rooted for the bullied teen who got his revenge in The Goatman, and Skinwalker is a cautionary tale that someone's appearance can deceive many. The Message is a fitting end to the anthology, and further permeates the psychological, metaphorical, and spooky world of The Farmhouse. With Mikayla Meyers's engaging narrative and subtle poetic flair, Country Tales of Terror is shrewdly disturbing, a delight for horror and supernatural fiction fans.

Pikasho Deka

The Farmhouse is a short horror story collection written by Mikayla E. Meyers. The book is filled with illustrations by Filippo Borghi that verge between the odd and surreal, and it contains ten short, loosely connected stories set in the remote countryside, keeping you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. "The Lich" follows farmer Andrew and his wife Addy as they investigate the disappearance of half their herd of cows under mysterious circumstances. In "The Witch," Andrew's brother Daniel pays him a visit from New York only to find him seemingly disillusioned with tales of a mysterious witch. "The Coven" is the story of Alyssa as she acclimatizes herself to her new home, only to be haunted by voices in her head asking her to be part of a dangerous coven.

The Farmhouse provides thrills, suspense, and horror in equal measure in this spooky collection of short stories that keep your eyes glued to the pages. Author Mikayla E. Meyers never shies away from gore, violence, and terrifying imagery as she paints quite a vivid picture with her words. In addition, the illustrations by Filippo Borghi add a lot of authenticity to the tales by providing visual stimulation to your imagination. All the characters have distinct voices, and the author does a splendid job of drawing the reader's attention by meticulously putting them in the character's headspace. Although I enjoyed them all, the tales involving the Lich were some of my favorites. If you love horror stories, The Farmhouse is the book for you.

Sheena Monnin

The Farmhouse by Mikayla E. Meyers takes the reader deep into the darkest and most surreal realms of the mind in each short story within the book. Simultaneously fascinating and terrifying, this book centers on an old farmhouse set on what seems to be a peaceful property until the different characters’ minds begin to reveal haunting energies that lurk everywhere, above and below the land. Themes of family, connectedness, love, and reality are explored in each mysterious story. For the length of each short story, the author packs a punch in their descriptions of the people and place, as well as the emotions, thoughts, and reactions each character endures when paranormal or otherworldly activities come calling. In the end, the reader wonders what is real and what is the result of the characters’ thoughts.

The truly skilled writer can take a short number of words and create a world so tangible and alive that the reader feels they are in the scene with the characters. The Farmhouse: Country Tales of Terror by Mikayla E. Meyers displays this skill in each short story. The author brings the characters to life through clever and witty word usage, both in descriptions and the characters' inner worlds. I appreciate how different each short story is from the others in the book and how thoroughly the author captures the scene and pulls the reader into it. This book is a page-turner that keeps the reader guessing and intrigued throughout it. The farmhouse in the book bears witness to the events that surround it, leaving the reader to wonder what events their own domicile may have borne witness to in decades or centuries gone by.

K.C. Finn

The Farmhouse: Country Tales of Terror is an anthology of fiction in the horror genre. It is aimed at the mature adult reading audience and was penned by Mikayla E. Meyers with illustrations by Filippo Borghi. Drawing inspiration from her 13th-century farmhouse home in the depths of Maryland, the author has produced a collection of short stories on the themes of living in isolation and what is really lurking in the dark outside your home, whether that be a coven or a monster or something somehow worse than that.

I love an anthology of prose, in particular when it’s horror prose. There’s something about the short time frame to make an impression that forces authors to increase the rising tension and creeping dread. Or perhaps it’s the disposable nature of the characters that creates an atmosphere of nobody being safe. Whatever the formula for success is, Mikayla E. Meyers has clearly managed to distill and bottle it with this collection of eerie stories. Mastering the art of quickly establishing a scenario and the players within it before diving promptly into the dread of the situation, The Farmhouse is a masterclass in exploring an idea for a story quickly and fully before concluding it dramatically and moving on to the next poor soul. I hate to pick favorites in a collection so densely packed with quality storytelling, but Skinwalker was a standout piece that kept me turning the pages at quite a pace to find out what happened next. No spoilers here, I’m afraid, other than to say that I recommend the whole anthology to horror fans everywhere.

Natalie Soine

The Farmhouse by Mikayla E Meyers tells the frightening story of the owners, heirs, farmers, inhabitants, and visitors that pass through the 120-year-old farmhouse. They regularly come and go, although a few stay for longer than others. Families, livestock, farm animals, and pets – some alive, others not. Strange things happen, unnatural and invisible beings appear and disappear including doppelgangers, a witch, a skinwalker, and ‘Schneller Geist’. The homestead is filled with the memories of its guests and visitants, their souls trapped inside. Addy, Andrew, and a few others make it their business to welcome new homeowners and hope they will stay forever. But are they real, imagined, or a dream?

The Farmhouse is a unique collection of horror stories, all linked together to form one riveting read. The unusual variety of characters include children, adults, animals, and those that find their way out of the author’s imagination. The eye-catching sketches that depict the many characters are both beautiful and horrific at the same time. The stories are eloquently written with vivid descriptions of scenes, locations, and The Farmhouse – including anybody or anything that dwells within the walls. Any person who reads The Farmhouse will soon discover that their mind is doing a lot more than wandering, so the stories are best read in the company of adults during the day to make for a peaceful night. “Lurking danger has been hiding in this picturesque Maryland region since the 18th century”. Overall, a fantastic thriller perfectly suited to anybody who enjoys horror stories and doesn’t mind hearing a bump in the night.