Title: The Alchemy of Reality
Published: 4th January 2016
Author: Andy Echevarria
Amazon Page: www.amazon.com/Andy-Echevarria/e/B004YTE4JQ
Join us on the ride through a kaleidoscope of mystery and intrigue. In these ten tales of suspense, the lines between fact and reality blur, challenging one’s notions of everyday life. Eerie, poignant, and at times inspiring, this collection of never-before-seen stories will transport you to a world where the supernatural abounds alongside the banal, and nothing is what it seems…
An interesting collection of suspenseful short reads that are perfect for a lunchtime break. Some I liked more that others but overall a good read.
Taxi – 3 out of 5 stars
Getting caught in a rainstorm is never good. Just when Michelle is about to give up and make a run for the underground station a taxi appears. Saved from getting soaked she can’t thank the driver enough. Her saving grace though soon turns into an uneasy drive home. Leaving her nervous and wary of whom he is. Days pass but the feelings remain so her friend Bev insists she go to a doctor to get some help for her anxieties. Was the taxi man Felix after her or was he a guardian stepping in to help in her time of need.
Crystal Ball – 3 out of 5 stars
Ever since Nathan walked passed a psychic shop he has been fascinated by a crystal ball seen in the window. Its like he is drawn to it. First he thinks he could play catch with it but his mother informs him that the crystal looks like that of a divination ball, one that could tell the future. After convincing his mother to get it for him he is overjoyed and can’t wait to play with it at home.
Back home though is when strange things start to happen with the crystal. Flashes of light and smoke appear out of nowhere. A message from a loved one predicts something bad will happen. If it comes true then who knows what else it might tell him.
The Magician – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Jack is a magician and a good one at that but an accident years before that left him with only one arm has made him question whether he still wants to continue with his craft. He insists to himself that the show he does for the school will be his last. He wants to go out on a high before trying to figure out what he wants to do with the rest of his life. After the show later at a bar he meets a stranger who appears to have seen his show, telling him how good he is. An offer he receives later that night could change his life forever if he believes in the man enough. Could it be true, is there life on Mars?
Dead Asleep – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Living with nightmares is something Sally wants to stop at all costs. She goes to her doctor who suggests she try lucid dreaming so she can try and control what is happening around her in them. Only problem is that she soon starts to loose track of what’s a dream and what’s reality – the reader aswell to some point but think that’s the purpose. She may want to control what is happening in her life with the lucid dreams but if she goes under again will she make it back out sane. The house she lives in was built on an ancient burial ground and so the spirits have cursed the land. No telling what might happen to those who do not heed the warning and leave.
Do Not Trespass – 3 out of 5 stars
Dolan had just left his grandmothers funeral where he had felt anything but settled. An uneasy feeling has followed him around and won’t let him be. Everywhere he goes he gets a sense of something not quite being right and of people being very cold. On the route home, down an almost deserted road, he comes to a stop due to an accident. At first he waits, even sleeps for a time, until he realises that the car in front of his belongs to his grandmother. Further more confusing him is that it has been unused for years. Getting more worked up he confronts the officers to let him look at the drivers. He gets a shock when confronted with the driver though. Something tells me it’s high time he woke up and got back to living.
Black Eagle – 3 out of 5 stars
Ricks life took a different turn when he helped a stranger on the side of the road. All this changes though when his wife is taken ill. Not long for this world she has come to terms with it. Ready to leave and start a new someplace else, to spread her wings and fly high. Rick never thought much of what happens when you pass but with the prospects coming ever closer for his wife he may just start to believe in the unbelievable. He needs to looked out the signs of things to come as they are there if you only look.
Elevator – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Ryan has a strange night he wishes he could forget but it seems to have followed him over to the next day. At a party the night before Ryan and his friend Tyler have a bit too much to drink. Ryan can’t drive and insists that he and Tyler take a cab home but Tyler just goes straight towards his car convinced he is fine to drive. Everything seems to be going fine to begin with but when Ryan starts to hear and see things that may not be there the night takes an unexpected turn. Now the day after on the elevator ride up to work he is struck by strange events again. The elevator keeps stopping and starting and getting very cold in a matter of seconds, he is also surrounded by the smell of lavender and whispers. Something is happening outside his control. Balance must be set right by their actions the night before but at what cost.
The Thirteenth Floor – 3 out of 5 stars
Nothing good happens on the thirteenth floor, especially for Timothy and his neighbours. A murder happened years before that the sight of still gives him nightmares. The woman in question was the one he was having an affair with. Two years later and he still can’t forget. After getting to his building and finding the lifts both out of order he has to walk up. It’s on the route up to his apartment that people from his past confront him, though they seem to act more like monsters than people and are meant to be dead – or are they? It seems they are there to make him remember something important he seems to have forgotten. A lesson must be learnt no matter the cost.
The Bronx is Burning – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Fires have been happening all around the Bronx leaving the cops with no clues. Eugene has a theory but one that’s a little out there. It might also be linked to the missing persons case for his neighbour. After going to the cops to talk through his invisible person theory he is almost laughed out by the captain. Only later when another cop, Ruth Abdullah, comes round to his place on her own accord to talk through his theory does he get excited that someone might actually believe him. From the day his neighbour went missing he took photos of her apartment that showed strange residuals left behind. He needs to believe in the unbelievable to find out what really left those marks and why.
Wunderkind – 3.5 out of 5 stars
A game of chess has a lot of moves and strategic thinking involved to win the game. The same can be said for life, though it can sometimes seem more complicated. Lucas has been almost pushed into playing chess by his father for the past few years. What started out as a wager to get some extra money if he won soon turned into big game tournaments; like his father used to play before he was born. This new tournament seems to hold more behind it than just a game of chess for Lucas. His dad has been keeping a secret and its time it was told. When playing a game you have to know when to go all in to win and when to hold back for the better of someone else. Chess lovers will like this one but if you haven’t played before then all the moves that get mentioned might get confusing.
Overall rating 3.25 out of 5 stars
I received this ARC from the author for my honest review.