Posted in Reviews

Is That You Jim? – Ken Fry || Short Story REVIEW #MysteryThrillerWeek

I was sent this book for review for the purposes of #MysteryThrillerWeek, but this did not affect my opinions and reviews.

I love psychological thrillers and this one seemed right up my alley. I also don’t read nearly enough short stories, so I thought this was a perfect opportunity to pick one up. Did I like it? Let’s find out!

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Nobody would call Jim Beresford pitiful. He has a perfect life. All traces of his once miserable childhood has been erased and best forgotten. He is successful, popular, rich, with a beautiful wife and three daughters. They were the love of his life.

Jim had it all. Until one day, everything he’s ever worked hard for crumbles into dust.
Poor Jim. There’s only one thing left to do….

Rating – PG-13 (Some violence)

Publication date – September 11, 2016

Length – 26 pages

 


 

The Good:

  • I enjoyed the set up to the climax of the story. From the first page I was interested in Jim, and in a short story it is so important to quickly make a connection with the reader.
  • This really reminded me of an Agatha Christie mystery and we all know how much I love those. I don’t know if it was just because I read it recently, but this reminded me of Endless Night more than anything.
  • I thought that the writing was really good, in this story. I know from experience that writing a short story that is introduces characters and ties up their story lines in less than 30 pages is crazy hard. I feel like Fry did that in a way that should be respected.

The Bad:

  • Although I believe that the short story format was done well, I think this would have been better as a novella or even a full book. Psychological thrillers thrive on the little things that add up to the eventual climax and I think the “little things” in this seem huge due to the shortness.
  • I liked the main character, but couldn’t get to know anything about anyone. It made the ending anticlimactic and I was disappointed about that.

 

I enjoyed this short story, but I wish it was a novella or a full length book.


 

Story – 4/5 (Really interesting and suspenseful)

Characters – 3.5/5 (It was too short to flesh them out.)

Writing – 4/5 (A well done short story.)

Uniqueness – 4/5 (I haven’t ever read a short story like this before.)

 

All in all I give this 3.9 Sexy Cleopatra Outfits out of 5!

 

What’s you favorite short story? I would love to know! Thanks for reading!


 

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Check out my last post on my #MysteryThrillerWeek Review of Backwoods Ripper – Anna Willet HERE!

 

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Posted in Reviews

American Literature Class – My Favorite Reads

Hey everyone, it has been awhile since I posted here, but honestly it has been a long time since I read anything as well. Basically, I’ve been in school and got so busy that any reading outside of class was out of the question. But now it is Christmas break and I’ve missed the blog, so I’m back!

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Without further ado, I am talking about some of my favorite reads from my American Literature class, in no particular order.

Recitatif – Toni Morrison (1983)

This is a short story about two girls, Twyla and Roberta, who meet and become friends in an orphanage, despite the fact they are different races. The rest of the story follows the two women in encounters with each other throughout their life.

This story really focuses on racial issues as well as feminism. The main thing that stuck out to me about this story, and the main reason it is on my list, is that we are never explicitly told which girl is black and which is white. You could examine this story all day and never figure out who is who, and it doesn’t matter to the story at all. It’s inspired, well written, and has some great things to say about culture from the past and today.

 

The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1892)

Ok, ok I’ve talked about this before, but it’s one of my favorite short stories I’ve ever read. It follows a woman who has moved into a vacation home with her husband, new baby, and a nanny. The story is told through journal entries written by the woman and we find out some disturbing things about her and her mental health.

Sure I’m a huge fan of dark and creepy stories, so this falls right into my alley, but I don’t think that’s all there is to it. This story was written in 1892, and was WAY ahead of its time with themes of mental illness and feminism. FEMINISM in the 1800’s? Unheard of! This story has more than meets the eye.

 

As I Lay Dying – William Faulkner (1930)

This is the first (and only) novel on this list and, let’s be honest, it’s because it is the only one I read to completion (sometimes a girl just can’t be bothered).

This story was groundbreaking as it had a TON of points of view, including the point of view of dead woman. The characters are so stupid, but it works beyond being hilarious (which it is).

I would have to say this was my favorite read of the whole semester, and I’m sure I’ll be picking up some more Faulkner soon.

 

The Life You Save May Be Your Own – Flannery O’Connor (1955)

Speaking of stupid characters, holy cow does O’Connor do stupid well, maybe even the best. I had never heard of O’Conner before this class, but she may be one of my favorite authors now.

This story is about an old woman and her daughter, BOTH named Lucynell, sitting on their porch in the middle of nowhere. The daughter is deaf and obviously has some more mental issues as she does thing like fall out of chairs, while sitting completely still. A one armed man named Mr. Shiftlet comes and does some handy work for the two women. By the end, Shiftlet leaves with the younger Lucynell, as her suitor.

If you’re a fan of cynical literature this is definitely for you, but warning it does not end happily so don’t go in hoping for happily ever after.

 

A Streetcar Named Desire – Tennessee Williams (1947)

I must admit, I usually do not like reading plays. The format of them just bugs me, and takes me out of the story. This was not the case with A Streetcar Named Desire.

We follow Blanche, who moves in with her sister, Stella, and her husband, Stanley. Blanche has had a hard past and is a compulsive liar, and this causes her issues throughout the play.

While my synopsis is short, the play is full of content. It has everything I love in a story, mental illness being one. If you haven’t read or seen it, check it out!

 

That’s all for English class today, friends! Have you read these? If not, you totally should, a lot, if not all can be found online. Hope you enjoyed this long overdue post!

Posted in Reviews

Creepy Short Stories REVIEW(s)

Sorry I have been absent for a few days, but I got super busy, and honestly didn’t have much to write about. But today I was reminded of some short stories I read towards the end of 2015 (mostly unpublished and on Reddit NoSleep ((links included to stories)) ) that I LOVED and thought some of y’all would enjoy them as well.

Although I will give a rating to these I won’t speak of the good and bad in fear of spoiling anything

The Whistlers

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A man finds a journal shoved into a backpack, written by someone who was stranded in the woods.

Rating – 8/10

Penpal

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A man recaps interconnected memories from his past. (This was actually published into a book!)

Rating – 9.5/10

Borrasca

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A teenager moves to a new town and uncovers some disturbing events taking place.

Rating – 9/10

The Yellow Wallpaper

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A woman is locked in her room. (sorry this one isn’t published online, but I’m sure you could find it somewhere)

Rating – 8.5/10

 

Sorry for the short post, but I really am worried that i would give something away about these stories, and I want y’all to have the same experiences I did.