A Happy New Year, from January Magazine…

… appropriately enough.

While the rest of us were whooping it up last night, counting down the end of December 2009, the literary web-zine January Magazine was posting its best fiction of 2009 piece – a list of just over 20 books that its editors liked best from the past year. They liked all kinds of things – books by Raymond Carver and Margaret Atwood, China Mieville and Stephen King, E.L. Doctorow and John Updike and Douglas Coupland. And, apparently, David Nickle. Here’s what reviewer David Middleton said about Monstrous Affections:

“Monstrous Affections by David Nickle (Chizine) 296 pages
The first thing that hits you is the cover. A seemingly innocuous portrait of a man with short cropped hair. But look closer and you see the real picture, something twisted, disturbing. The cover of Monstrous Affections was so compelling that I had to read it. And like the cover, the stories inside are not what they seem. But also, like the cover, the stories inside are brilliant. David Nickle has a talent for writing what, on the surface, appear to be normal stories peopled with characters you can identify with. Stories that on the surface have a feel of the everyday, but upon finer scrutiny outline things seen in a skewed miasma of real life gone horribly wrong. Ghosts, Vampires, mythical beasts and circus sideshows. You’d think that you were reading a book full of what you had always expected a horror story to be, but Nickle takes a left turn and blindsides you with tales that are not of the norm, but are all the more horrific because of surprise twists, darkness and raw emotion. — David Middleton”

Once again, I note that Erik Mohr’s shrieking horror of a cover takes top billing in the review. That is as it should be. Boy’s a genius. Always said so.

Read January Magazine’s whole year in review here.

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