There is a misnomer on the cover of this book. Some short stories in this volume have not been commissioned for the book. Several of them have appeared in various magazines and collections (some have appeared over a decade ago). This is okay, for this is the first time that they are all collected together and I hadn’t read any of them before. The purpose of this collection in part, according to Bernheimer, is to present fairy tales as an acceptable source of literature, at least to present modern fairy tales as such. The succeds very well at this and […]
If you have noticed a lot of Steinbeck reviews the last few months, that’s on me. I currently live in the Monterey Bay Area and decided that while I live here, I should read the works of the man who was so inspired by this place. Steinbeck is from Salinas, CA, the largest city in the area but many of his books take place in and around the county. The famous Cannery Row of Monterey is actually named for his book, which popularized the nickname of the former Ocean View Avenue. Monterey loves celebrating Steinbeck. Just today, on one of […]
Eh. I am pretty much reading anything that costs me zero dollars, so I thought I try one of the Amazon Original Stories. I have read Taylor Jenkins Reid before so I thought this be at least a good read, even though it’s a short story. I liked the idea of writing letters back and forth, but though two of the characters were beyond boring, and hated the last letter that was sent. It pretty much makes one of the characters totally crap and actually being someone that she would have despised earlier. For this short story to make any […]
If you don’t yet know about the LeVar Burton podcast, “LeVar Burton Reads” let me have the distinct pleasure of being the one to tell you about it. LeVar Burton, he of Reading Rainbow and Star Trek: TNG reads you short stories. AND IT IS THE BEST THING EVER. He is an amazing reading and storyteller and just brings a big ol’ story to my face. Each episode is 45 minutes to about an hour, and he reads you the story and at the end, talks a little about it. So, the reason I’m mentioning it, other then the inherent […]
This is a book of Pride and Prejudice variations by Elizabeth Ann West. I am not particularly pleased with any of them, although the first at least has an ending of sorts. (And there are no actual ‘dates’ like we think of today. Title fail.) Hopefully my journey through P&P variations gets better from here. “Much to Conceal” In this story, Elizabeth reveals to Jane in London what happened with the disastrous proposal in Hunsford a week prior. Jane and their Aunt Gardiner plot to have Elizabeth meet Darcy to try to figure things out. We have Colonel Fitzwilliam’s (who […]
Dead Funny is a compilation of short horror stories written by comedians. With contributions from the likes of Richard Herring, Stewart Lee, Sarah Pascoe, Al Murray and many more, most of the authors are household names here in England, but are probably little known (if at all) State-side. That doesn’t matter though, given the talent on display. As with any bunch of short stories, some are good, some are just OK, and some are fantastic. Surprisingly (to me, anyway), none of my favourites turned out to be written by my favourite comics – Stewart Lee got himself in the OK […]
Samanta Schweblin. This is a name I have been hearing for years but for some reason I had never read any of her books before this past December. After three books, she is definitely one of my favorite writers. Well, after one book, really. As soon as I finished her story collection “Siete casas vacías” I knew I was in literary love. For me, Schweblin is Lucy in the Sky with a touch of Kafka. Her stories are surreal and whimsical but with a dangerous edge, you know in your gut that things are oh so very wrong even when […]
I picked up this 2017 collection of short stories because it featured contributions of several writers whose work I’ve reviewed before and liked, and the subject of djinn (or jinn or genies, whatever term you prefer) has been popping up on my radar quite a bit lately. The Djinn Falls in Love and Other Stories was a brilliant way for me to start CBR11 — immensely entertaining, sometimes provocative, and an entree to the works of writers new to me but whose work I will definitely be tracking down. The stories are a wonderful mix of styles and settings and shed light not only on the nature of the djinn but on human nature as well. The djinn, created by Allah from smokeless fire, are sometimes depicted as tricky and/or evil, but in some ways they are no different from humans.