Further than Fate is a collection of short stories by veteran indie horror writer Brian Fatah Steele. The collection contains stories that fall within the post-mythic genre of suspense like H. P. Lovecraft, Clive Barker, or Mike Mignola.
Post-Mythic is a subgenre of horror that combines mythological fantasy with the modern world. In the words of the author it is “low-brow escapist literature.” This is far from the truth however as this collection is smarter than most big name writers working today.
The collection is made up of five stories. Some have been released before while others are completely new. Further than Fate contains; Destiny these Days, Scions of Seasons, A Complicated Divine, The Stitching, and Far House, Deep House.
For those new to Steele’s work he has an even tone with strong characters. His work usually depicts deprived acts and wicked villains—and he didn’t disappoint here.
Overall this work is refreshing. Each story describes desperate worlds torn by war. It reads like an anime version of the Epic of Gilgamesh if they gave Enkidu a closet full of assault rifles and a jetpack.
The main characters seem to stay somewhat static between stories—strong emotional male leads coupled with thin emotionally damaged female partners. Despite similar characters the stories themselves were different enough that one stopped noticing the similarities after a few pages.
In fact the worse thing about this collection was that it was a collection. Each piece seemed to compliment and expand on a world that Brian was creating however in his Acknowledgement actually stated that he wanted the stories set in different universes.
That is the worst thing about this book though. Each story is complex, intriguing, and action packed on its own. It had its share of rough patches but as a whole it was a great read.
If you enjoy dark, humorous, and action packed literature then get this book. It is available through Amazon.
I give Further than Fate four out of five dancing hamsters!
Stories included in the collection are:
Destiny these Days: a Greek god becomes the target of a primordial gang war between the forces of creation and destruction.
Far House, Deep House: a band of misfits fight the odds to survive the depths of Hell.
Scions of Seasons: when the chaotic forces of wild magic assassinate the god of logic the guiding principles of the universe battle together to hold the balance of creation in check.
A Complicated Divine: while babysitting a fallen angel, an interdimensional creature and his sidekick ghost discover that the fabric of creation just acquired a new wrinkle.
The Stitching: when two strangers meet in a wasteland of forgotten magic, they become pawns in a fey political game of chess till they discover the power inside themselves.