First, we announce my next book!
Bites Eyes: 13 Macabre Morsels is a brief collection of flash fiction, out through Brain Jar Press from February 28, 2023. It’s been a pleasure working with the BJP team on this and joining their roster of talented authors — basically a Who’s Who of modern Antipodean spec-fic. A few of them have even said some kind words about the book, as you’ll soon see!
From the press release:
Art and ambition meet sublime moments of dread in Matthew R. Davis’ Bites Eyes, a collection of sinister and terrifying vignettes from the award-winning author and rising star of Australian horror.
Within, you’ll find ghosts celebrating heartbreaking holidays, deadly music that spells death for any who hear it, unsettling children who take extraordinary steps, lethal butchers lurking in plain sight, ancient evils, and much more.
Collected together for the first time, these thirteen macabre morsels offer a taste of the terrifying, the sinister, the dangerous, and the disturbed.
Every bite’s a pleasure, yet comes with a delectable thrill of fear.
And now, lists of shit I liked in 2022, because why not. First of all — BOOKS!
I read 180 books in 2022, which, believe it or not, is a sharp drop from the past few years. But I wanted to read less and do more, so… mission accomplished! Here are my favourites from the new releases of the year, ranked in rough order of preference.
TOP 20 NOVELS
Daphne – Josh Malerman
Fellstones – Ramsey Campbell
Sundial – Catriona Ward
The Pallbearers Club – Paul Tremblay
Reluctant Immortals – Gwendolyn Kiste
The Path of Thorns – Angela Slatter
Fairy Tale – Stephen King
Nona the Ninth – Tamsyn Muir
Children of Paradise – Camilla Grudova
Devil House – John Darnielle
Empathy – Fay Lee
Hide – Kiersten White
Hidden Pictures – Jason Rekulak
Our Wives Under the Sea – Julia Armfield
Nightcrawling – Leila Mottley
Bird Bones – Michelle Jäger
The Black House – Carole Johnstone
Insomnia – Sarah Pinborough
The Daughter of Doctor Moreau – Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Exiles – Jane Harper
TOP 7 COLLECTIONS
Illuminations – Alan Moore
Hard Places – Kirstyn McDermott
The Fall – Alan Baxter
Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke and Other Misfortunes – Eric LaRocca
Uncanny Angles – Sean Williams
Parallel Hells – Leon Craig
The Memory Librarian and Other Stories of Dirty Computer – Janelle Monáe
TOP 5 ANTHOLOGIES
Dark Stars – edited by John F.D. Taff
Voices in the Dark – edited by Eugene Johnson, Steve Dillon & Alain Davis
Midnight Echo 17 – edited by Greg Chapman
Sinister Supernatural Stories Vol. 1 – Screaming in the Night – edited by R.E. Sargent & Steven Pajak
This All Come Back Now: An Anthology of First Nations Speculative Fiction– edited by Mykaela Saunders
TOP 7 NON-FICTION
Ten Steps to Nanette – Hannah Gadsby
Stephen King: A Complete Exploration of His Work, Life, and Influences – Bev Vincent
Faith, Hope and Carnage – Nick Cave & Seán O’Hagan
Provocations: New and Selected Writing – Jeff Sparrow
Tinder Translator: An A-Z of Modern Misogyny – Aileen Barratt
The Ninth Life of a Diamond Miner – Grace Tame
Burning Questions: Essays and Occasional Pieces 2004-2021 – Margaret Atwood
I didn’t read enough new novellas, graphic novels, or poetry to bother writing up lists of their own, so here they are together in an unranked group.
A Mirror Mended – Alix E. Harrow (novella)
Bluebells – Leanbh Pearson (novella)
The Me You Love in the Dark – Skottie Young & Jorge Corona (graphic novel)
Saga: Volume Ten – Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples (graphic novel)
The Frozen Arch – Dominic J. Clark (poetry)
Orlam – PJ Harvey (poetry)
TOP 21 ALBUMS AND EPs
Cave In, Heavy Pendulum
Ghostsmoker, Grief EP
Porcupine Tree, Closure/Continuation
Kendrick Lamar, Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers
Dead Cross, Dead Cross II
Altars, Ascetic Reflection
The Smile, A Light for Attracting Attention
Daniel Johns, FutureNever
Freedom of Fear, Carpathia
Danger Mouse & Black Thought, Cheat Codes
Muse, Will of the People
Imperial Triumphant, Spirit of Ecstasy
Jesu, Pity/Piety EP
Godflesh, Pure Live
Fear Factory, Recoded
Weezer, SZNS: Summer/Spring EPs
TOP 13 MOVIES (in no particular order)
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Crimes of the Future
May 2023 be a year of blessings and bounties for you all.