That Which Cannot Be Undone edited by Jess Landry
Cracked Skull Press (October 2022)
286 pages; $16.99 paperback
Reviewed by Joshua Gage
From the ruins of Hell Town, where it’s rumored that the Federal Government hid the mutated results of a chemical accident, to the ghosts of Cry Baby Bridge and Wallhalla Road, to cryptids like the Loveland Frog and Crosswick Monster, Ohio certainly has its horror cred established. Editor Jess Landry has tapped into that horror by gathering some of the finest voices in horror in this anthology of Ohio horror, an anthology that one hopes will be the first of many.
There are plenty of big names in this collection with whom horror fans will be familiar. Industry phenoms like Lucy A. Snyder and Tim Waggoner are present here with very unique stories. Snyder regales us with a tale of revenge in her story “Avocation” that is sure to please anyone who seeks justice in this world. Waggoner, on the other hand, makes things like mowing the lawn really sad and haunting in his story “Garden of Love is Green.” These stories are solid and exactly what one would expect from such big names in the horror industry.
What makes this anthology so much fun is that so many of these stories are centered upon Ohio. While one or two mention a remote town, some of the authors really delve into the location, and make it apart of the story. Tim McWhorter, for example, takes inspiration from a YouTube video of the ruins of Kelleys Island Winery, and really makes the location a part of the story. It’s details like these that lift this book above the usual horror anthology and make it something unique and fun.
Overall, That Which Cannot Be Undone is a fun collection of Ohio horror stories. There are some major players in this anthology. However, while it would have been easy for Landry to simply fill this book with only famous horror authors from Ohio and call it day, she instead chose to give newer voices a place to shine as well, and its fun to read newer voices amongst the giants. Clearly, any horror fan from the Buckeye State will have a special affinity for this book, but any horror reader will enjoy this anthology which comes strongly recommended.