Last year I read a collection of short stories called Thrown Out: Stories from Exeter by Jennie Coughlin. My favorite was the story of two young boys who found dead bodies in a marsh outside of town and All That is Necessary takes us back to Exeter twenty years later with some of the same characters. This isn’t your typical story, there are relationships but romance isn’t the focus instead we revisit the past when it collides with the present and the effects it has on our main characters. I easily consumed this in a single afternoon and while not flawless it certainly held my attention.
I have not had a lot of experience with Russian literature but was very curious about the seventeen short stories contained within the pages of There Once Lived a Girl Who Seduced Her Sister’s Husband, and He Hanged Himself. This is a follow-up to the author’s New York Times best seller There Once Lived a Woman Who Tried to Kill Her Neighbor’s Baby. I really enjoyed some of the tales and thought others were ok. What Petrushevskaya does give us is a dark, gritty, in your face look at the misery, love and loss of those living in communist controlled Russia during her youth. Imagine if you will a look inside the apartments of the projects.
All You Never Wanted takes you on a dark journey into sibling jealous, a dysfunctional family. Griffin delivered a unique disturbing contemporary unlike anything I have ever read. This tale takes you on a journey dealing with the effects of instantly having money and emotional issues. It gives you a dark and sinister look at sibling rivalry. While I certainly became entangled in the tale, it left me wanted more.
Burn offers us a unique look into a small town and a dysfunctional preacher’s family. It held my attention from page one and touched on some sensitive social subjects. Gibson takes us into the heart of a small Alabama town and the mind of one young man who resides there.
Night Road by Kristen Hannah has been in my TBR pile forever, I was gifted it when I first received my Nook. This month, I participated in a challenge on Goodreads. I partnered up with a member and they selected a book from my TBR pile for me to read. Since I am also participating in the 2012 TBR pile challenge this worked out perfectly for me. I think this sat in my pile for so long, because I tend to avoid surreal storylines.
After the Snow is the debut novel of author S.D. Crockett. Crockett brings us a dystopian set near a Welsh mountain during an ice age. Unending snow has shut down society and forced humans into settlements. This tale shares with us the journey of a fifteen year old boy, as he searches for his family. While the author captures the landscape with beautiful imagery, I found the lack of world building and the pace to be difficult.
The book, Thrown Out: Stories from Exeter, was a delightful collection of four short stories. All of the tales took place in the college town of Exeter. I really enjoyed each of the stories, which doesn’t often happen in a collection of works.