Wednesday 13 July 2022

The Bone House - J.D. Kirk - A VIP Club Exclusive Short Story

The Bone House
A VIP Club Exclusive Short Story

This is the seventh volume from J.D. Kirk that I have read in the last few months. I have enjoyed all that I have read the first 4 in the DCI Logan series and the first two in the Robert Hoon series. And now this precursor. I picked the first for a few reasons, but mainly because authors Alex Smith and JE Mayhew have both recommended the author and series. I am a big fan of Smith’s DCI Kett novels and Mayhew’s DCI Will Blake Series. And having ripped through both of their series and slowing working through all of Mayhew’s others works I decided to give Kirk’s a try. Like Mayhew and Smith, Kirk publishes under various names. Kirk publishes children books as Barry Hutchison, and other adult fiction as Barry J. Hutchison. He is coming up on 175 books across the three pen names. If I had known that or I might not have picked up this first one. Friends call me a ‘completionist’ in that when I find an author I like, I try to read everything they have published. For now I will try and read the remaining books published as Kirk. This one is only available as a VIP Exclusive by joining his mailing list. We are informed by Kirk in the introduction that:

“I have not read the story that follows in ten years.
I wanted to open this introduction with that, and explain why I’m not going to read it now, either.

I think books and stories are like time capsules. The books I write now are wildly different to how I wrote a decade ago. I know if I read the following story, I will cringe. I will want to change things. I will want to rewrite it, perhaps, so it is in my current voice, and not the voice I used in 2010.
But that’s cheating.

So, I won’t.

Instead, I’ll say that, at a time when I was writing mostly cheerful, comedic stories, The Bone House was an outlier. It is dark—very dark, if memory serves—and lacks much of the humour that can be found in the pages of my other books.

I think if you look closely, though, you might see how the story would one day evolve into the sort of things I now write about in the DCI Logan series. You’ll hopefully be able to plot some of the evolution of my writing from a decade ago to now.
Mostly, though, I just hope you enjoy the story. It’s only around 5,000 words long, so it shouldn’t take you long.

But, with a bit of luck, it’ll stay with you far longer…”

And that it does. In some ways it is darker because of the victim and perpetrator. There are some hints along the way, but for most I think the twist will be surprising. The story takes place on a single afternoon after the last day of school. It follows a young woman as she heads into the woods to see something fascinating a young man has discovered. But fascinating becomes creepy, and then terrifying as they discover something darker, something underground. 

It is easy to see who this story was a stepping stone from the pen of Barry J. Hutchison on his way to the persona of J.D. Kirk. I could also see elements of this playing into an investigation by either DCI Logan or an element in Hoon’s hunting. The worst part of this story is the way the ending is left hanging. And because of that it will stay with you for a long, long time. 

This story is easily read over a mug of tea. But to get your hands on it you need to sign up for Kirk’s mailing list, be warned it is not the first piece you get, over several days there will be welcome emails. They were great to read. And this story is an excellent offering. The earliest penning’s from Kirk’s dark mind.

Books by J.D. Kirk:

DCI Logan Series:

Robert Hoon Thrillers:

DI Heather Filson Series:

Contributed to:
Everyday Kindness: A Collection of Uplifting Tales to Brighten Your Day

Books as Barry J. Hutchison:
Dan Deadman Space Detective Series:

Space Team Series:
The Search for Splurt 
Song of the Space Siren 
The Guns of Nana Joan 
Return of the Dead Guy 
Planet of the Japes 
The Time Titan of Tomorrow 
The King of Space Must Die 
Sting of the Mustard Mines 
Sentienced to Death
The Hunt for Reduk Topa
A Lot of Weird Space Shizz: Collected Short Stories

Sidekicks Initiative Series:

The Bug Books Series:
Episode 1
Episode 2
Episode 3
Complete Season One

Other Books:

Children’s books as Barry Hutchison:
Invisible Fiends Series:
The Crowmaster 
Doc Mortis 
The Beast 
The Darkest Corners 

The Missing Remote of the Apocalypse
The Book of Doom 

Benjamin Blank Series:

Beaky Malone Series:

Generator Rex Series:

Living Ted Series:
Revenge of the Living Ted
Invasion of the Living Ted

Spectre Collectors Series:
Too Ghoul for School
A New York Nightmare!

Other works:

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