The Comfort Zone and Other Safe Spaces by Tom Over
We live in anxious times, you and I, desperately uncertain times. An era in which governments behave irrationally. Diseases ravage the populous. And internet culture threatens to change who we really are. Modern life, for many, is one giant trigger warning. You need a place of sanctuary, a refuge from the chaos - so follow me now, into The Comfort Zone and Other Safe Spaces. In the Zone nothing is what it seems. Houses defy the laws of nature while bodies become portals to impossible worlds. Viruses harbour mystifying enigmas and technologies incite the most subversive of desires. Unfathomable encounters lurk both beneath the waves and between the stars. Even birth and death, once knowable certainties, are here warped beyond all recognition. In his debut collection, Tom Over pushes the boundaries of genre storytelling into startling new realms. From transgressive weird fiction to 80s-inspired splatterpunk, from surreal dreamscapes to body horror nightmares. Exploring both earthbound fears and uncharted cosmic terror, these stories will lure you into spaces that, upon inspection, may prove not safe after all... | “Tom Over shows no bounds in how far he’s willing to go with the absurd and grotesque and I love him for it. He is a tightrope walker of a writer, balancing horror and pitch black humour with literary flare. Reading this book was the most fun I’ve had in a while. I loved these stories. I love this collection.”- Philip LoPresti, author of The Things We Bury | “...Safe Spaces is conclusive evidence that Tom Over is the new heir to the throne of nihilism and chaos. A future transgressive classic!”- Chris Kelso, author of The DREGS Trilogy | “Discomfiting. Unsafe. Grotesque. Night after night, these stories invaded my dreams." - Gregor Xane, author of The Hanover Block | “Inventive, transgressive, and bristling with dark life, Tom Over’s The Comfort Zone and Other Safe Spaces is an auspicious debut—it’ll have you turning on all the lights, laughing, wincing, asking yourself if he’ll GO THERE and discovering with gratitude that yes, he will in fact GO THERE…There and Beyond.”- Matthew M. Bartlett, author of Gateways to Abomination.
Wow. I went into this sweet fat baby with a positive attitude. Tom was new to me, completely. But I wasn’t scared, as he’s a BAMF. You’re gonna find out why. I knew, seriously, by the middle of the third paragraph of the very first story, that Tom Over is truly someone very, very special. So very talented. Absolutely original. Massively creative, and told with such an economy of language, not a single word wasted or overused. This baby also contains my now ALL TIME FAVORITE short story of 2020, probably of all time really. Prepare yourself for “Phylum” trust me. Every tale was hand crafted and brewed with only the finest, all-natural ingredients. I loved this book. I love this book. These stories WILL release serotonin into your brain. It’s absolutely wonderful. 5/5 Skulls ☠️☠️☠️☠️☠️