Publication date: May 4th, 2021 Links:  Amazon  |  Goodreads O ne of the most popular role-playing properties in the world gets new life wit...

Review || Walk Among US

Publication date: May 4th, 2021

One of the most popular role-playing properties in the world gets new life with this trio of horror novellas set in Vampire: The Masquerade's World of Darkness by three brilliant talents: Genevieve Gornichec, Cassandra Khaw, and Caitlin Starling

The subtle horror and infernal politics of the World of Darkness are shown in a new light in Vampire: The Masquerade: Walk Among Us, an audio-first collection of three novellas that show the terror, hunger, and power of the Kindred as you've never seen them before.

In Genevieve Gornichec's A SHEEP AMONG WOLVES, depression and radicalization go hand-in-hand as a young woman finds companionship in the darkness...

In Cassandra Khaw's FINE PRINT, an arrogant tech bro learns the importance of reading the fine print in the contract for immortality...

And in Caitlin Starling's THE LAND OF MILK AND HONEY, ideals and ethics bump heads with appetite on a blood farm.

Three very different stories from three amazing, distinct voices, but all with one thing in common: the hunger never stops, and for someone to experience power, many others are going to have to feel pain.

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Walk Among Us is a collection of three novellas set in the world of Vampire: The Masquerade. For those of you unfamiliar with Vampire: The Masquerade, it's a gothic tabletop RPG that rose to popularity in the 1990s.  Set in the "World of Darkness", players play vampires, complete with the struggle to maintain some humanity as well as navigating treacherous political machinations of both vampire and human alike. True to the vampires of that world, these stories are dark and broody. The vampires within these tales have diverse backgrounds and ideologies. 

"A Sheep Among Wolves" is the first foray into the world of White Wolf. This story by Genevieve Gornichec was the weakest of the bunch for me. In it, a college student dealing with depression and loneliness finds herself realizing a whole other world has been right in front of her. I struggled with this story the most. The pacing was incredibly slow and I really had to push myself to get through it. The main character felt very insipid and reserved. Any supporting characters went the reverse direction and were absurdly stereotypical. While I certainly appreciated the overall mental health theme, this one just felt like something I'd read before. 

The second story, Cassandra Khaw's "Fine Print", certainly elevates the collection. Bringing a modern-day touch, the main character here is someone that you love to see get what he deserves. Khaw brings this detestable character to life in hi-def and lets us take a seat to watch his undoing. Arrogant and overbearing, this rather tedious specimen of manhood thinks that he's getting the better deal when in all actuality he's getting played by vampires way older and smarter than he is. This one truly shows that vampires are inexhaustible masters of manipulative and cunning. 

"The Land of Milk and Honey" by Caitlin Starling brings up the rear in this collection. This unique story combines ethics and vampirism with this setting of sustenance and sustainable farming. Out of all the stories, I enjoyed this one the most. The strange quandary of needing blood to survive but to do so without killing is one that has been touched on before in vampire fiction but never quite in this way. It brings up some interesting parallels to our own struggles. This story has a bit of everything, some romance, a little treachery, and a lot of manipulation. 

For a collection that only holds three stories, it took a while to get through this one. I enjoyed the variety of themes presented by each story. Vampire fiction has been around for a long time so getting something that feels fresh is a unique experience in itself.