They don’t call Ellen Datlow the Queen of Horror for nothing: after decades of editing speculative fiction, she knows good story-telling when she sees it. The Best Horror of the Year 11 illustrates this beautifully, and what’s nice about this volume is that the stories run the gamut of horror subgenres.
I truly enjoyed Gemma Files’ “Thin Cold Hands” as well as Laird Barron’s “Girls Without Their Faces On.” As I am a fan of psychological horror in particular, my favorite story was Orrin Grey’s “No Exit.” Although I am a New Englander and the tale is set in Kansas, anyone can imagine an exit off of a freeway that leads to a rest stop, and Grey’s imagery is exceptional in the mood it creates. In Grey’s tale, the stop is closed. When the narrator’s sister was a teenager, a cult leader and his followers abducted and murdered her at the rest stop. When the narrator returns as an adult to explore the site herself, she is unprepared for what she discovers.
On a side note, although Joe Hill's story is good, it is by far not the best one in his Full Throttle collection. I wish Datlow had selected "Thumbprint"; I think it was the stronger story by him in 2019.