Have you ever wondered about your neighbors? A teen learns the terrible truth about the house next door in this comically chilling Halloween frightfest.
Home alone on All Hallows Eve, Kat Mandou is being creeped out by the family that lives next to him. Why is a child often screaming over there? And what’s with those crazy signs in their front yard? Feeling alienated from peers and parents, intimidated by his new pet, he decides to get to the bottom of the weirdness of his neighbors. What he discovers will haunt him. A fun and humorous horror story that proves you never can tell what might lurk in the house Next Door. From The Macabre Mind Of Lori R. Lopez, a collection of thirteen bizarre tales.
E-Book: 5,329 Words
Age Range: 12 and up.
Kat noticed the tree because pomegranates were his favorite food, scoring three on a scale of ten. All else rated zero. He was generally indifferent about everything, meals included.
~ from Next Door
An interlude of tense biding. A suspenseful aching hush.
Hinges creaked upstairs. Eyes bulged in terror. A dervish spiralled to the base of the steps.
~ from Next Door
THE FINAL DAY of Kat Mandou’s life commenced as tedious as most. The only thing out of the ordinary was that something peculiar seemed to be going on at the house next door.
Not that he was inclined to snoop. Quite the opposite. He preferred to ignore the world, and seldom heeded the inhabitants of the dreary olive-planked eyesore — accidentally glimpsed on occasion because they left the drapes wide like they had no secrets, no skulking chain-rattling embarrassments to hide. Kat doubted it. Everyone had a skeleton or two.
Impressions consisted of a couple always grinning at a toddler. If they were so happy, why did he hear so many blood-curdling wails? A decrepit geezer toward the rear of the abode was a permanent fixture, seated on a musty-dusty tattered-battered sort of chair. Kat wondered in an especially idle moment if the fossil might be stuffed like a museum exhibit, the victim of a mad Taxidermist.
Today their drapes were inexplicably drawn, which seemed stranger than the disturbing signs. (Actual signs, spelling trouble in capital letters!)
“As always, Lori R. Lopez gripped my interest with her technique of writing after about five paragraphs in. Maybe from now, I’ll learn to keep the neighbors to themselves, not like I relate much anyway. It was a steady and interesting read. Might need to be reread before completely grasping the situation.
Well done, Lori. I’ll always love your work.”
“Creepy. Who lives next door? Sometimes it’s better not to know. There [are] strange things going on next door to Kat, a kid with no interest and no emotions, but his curiosity is peaked. After hearing noises coming from the house and never meeting the neighbors, Kat goes to investigate. What he finds… Read on..”
“This story is an interesting affair, a mix of understated bizarro and good old-fashioned ghost story that starts with a physical, sickening vibe, before veering off sharply into the realms of chilling suspense — something I am all in favour of. Crucially we see a well-rounded character in the story’s hero (for want of a better word) Kat. He embodies that general malaise that I think most of us experienced in our teen years, where he feels an outcast, but lacks the drive to do anything about it. The first half is well-anchored in the weird side of the horror spectrum, but the second buries the needle in the macabre, sending unmistakable shivers down my spine.”
THE BLOODY BLOODY BOOK REVIEW; Goodreads Review
About The Author & Artist
Lori R. Lopez has been on both sides of the mysterious, peculiar, odd, weird, strange, offbeat, abnormal, spooky or macabre next-door-neighbor coin. She, like her character Kat Mandou, has been inclined to wonder about the people who live nearby. Often, however, she has been wondered about herself . . . Why doesn’t she come outside? Why is she seldom seen? Is she a hermit? Is she a vampire? Is she secretive? Is she sinister? Is she dressed for a funeral? Is she a witch? Are there bats in her belfry? Are her walls padded? Does she sleep in a coffin? Does she ever sleep? Why is she so quiet? Why is she so pale? What does she do in there?
Lori hopes her neighbors will one day read her books and stop wondering. Their questions will all be answered. At least a few of them. She hopes the answers for the remaining questions can be deciphered by reading her many Author Bios like this one. Or perhaps it will simply make them wonder more. Hmmm . . . And yet, if she ever becomes famous enough, they might be able to see her guest on a late-late-late-night talk show. Otherwise, she does her best to avoid interviews as she never knows what to say.
On Halloween, for some reason, even Trick-Or-Treaters seem to wonder about Lori since they never knock at her door. Maybe they think she’s that eccentric crank or crackpot down the street. In which case, that is almost like being famous, isn’t it? Maybe everyone should just read her books. Then she would be famous and well-known, thanks to the helpful Bios found at the end. If she doesn’t become famous or well-known, please do her a favor and tell everyone you know what you learned about Lori from this particular Bio. Then I will be famous. Whoever I am.