Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Salford Stories


 All of the stories in this collection were written by people who have a connection to Salford. Thus many, but not all of the stories, take place in this robust northern city. The call for submissions was in honour of the Shelagh Delaney Day, 25 November. Charlotte Delaney, Shelagh’s daughter, selected the winner, Neil Campbell with Everything is Seen at Its Best in the Dark.

RRP   £7.00

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Contributors 
Angela Elizabeth Armstrong, H. Asran , RBN Bookmark, Bradley R Byington, Neil Campbell, Ceila, Daniel Fishwick, David Frankel, Chloe Hill, Lauren Hopes, J.M. Ilmo, Karen Kendrick, Zoe Lambert, Christian A. Lea, Sarah Miller, Giacomo Perazzi, Melanie Rees, Meg Rowles, Kimberly Walker
ISBN: 9781907335440
 

Monday, June 28, 2021

Baubles

 


The challenge was to write a bauble of a story. So we have a varied selection of snippets that sparkle. Once again we feel privileged to publish this fine group of writers. Each story is different and glitters in its own way. 

RRP £9.00 

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Baubles 

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A great range of stories and styles here. A story for everyone. Talented, contemporary writers writing about issues that engage you.  
 
Excellent selection of stories for everyone to enjoy. Lively and thought provoking  
Contributors:
Sally Angell, Christopher Bowles, Edward Breen, Margaret Bulleyment, Patsy Collins, Charlotte Comley, Elizabeth Cox, Jeanne Davies, Jo Fino, L.G. Flannigan, Linda Flynn, Gregory Heath, Dawn Knox, Stuart Larner, Cathy Leonard, C. G. Menon, Paula R C Readman, L. F. Roth, Glynis Scrivens, Nathan Spicer, Dianne Stadhams, Allison Symes, Clare Weze. 
ISBN: 9781907335464  
 
 

Sunday, June 27, 2021

From Light to Dark and Back Again

 

 

A collection of very short stories to suit every mood.
 
 
 
 
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As this is flash fiction it is a selection of short snappy tales which will have you on the edge of your seat. A talented writer, Symes uses every word to good effect. Being Flash Fiction each word has to earn its place. The paperback is the perfect size for slipping in a bag and reading a story or two whilst you have a few minutes. The endings will keep you guessing. My personal favourite was, The Doctor. I wasn't expecting that.
A wonderful collection of light and dark stories, short enough to entice one to read when time is limited but long enough to be enjoyable. Allison Symes has cleverly combined light and dark stories which kept me guessing as to how they would end.
I liked the clever adaptation and retelling of well known stories and fairytales, giving them a twist. It was hard to name a favourite but I found 'They Don't Understand' one of the most memorable.
A thoroughly enjoyable read that kept me turning the pages.  
A very enjoyable flash fiction collection! The weird and the wonderful, all communicated with a deceptively simple voice…and that’s difficult to achieve. I liked the metafiction, with references to/subversion of popular stories, fairy tales, and classics like Pride and Prejudice, and the sinister twists and surprise endings. They focus on inner voice of the characters, which I personally love.  
 
ISBN: 9781910542064
 

Thursday, June 24, 2021

January Stones


 

These stories were written one a day throughout January 2013. They were originally published on a blog called Gill’s January Stones. In fact, they were published in reverse order. The first one you read here, When Physics Got Sick, was the last one to be written and originally published on 31 January 2016.

Sometimes the stories would come right at the beginning of the day. Sometimes they would take a while longer.

Do they have a theme? Not really, though the idea of ‘stones’ is one of turning them over slowly on the beach until we find the right one. It’s not a bad time of year, anyway, right at the beginning in January, as the New Year starts and the days slowly become longer.

There was no strict word count. Each story is as long as it needs to be. It had to be finished, though, by midnight of that day.

RRP £6.00

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A beautifully presented collection of flash fiction with many stories that give pause for thought. I particularly enjoyed 'Moules Mariniere' which activates the sense through the words on the page. Fabulous
 
The book is a quirky, easy read and most entertaining. Some of the stories make your blood run cold, others amuse, others are interesting character studies. If you want something a little bit different, this is a great place to start.  
 
Each mini story wears a cloak of a different hue and tone- from humour to pathos, from social observation to social satire. There is a multitude of vignettes on display to suit your every mood. Particular favourites of mine were ;- 'The Well-Travelled Camembert' ( what's not to love in a tale about cheese?) and 'Art Exam' which punctures the deadly seriousness of art so effectively. Louisa May Alcott's remarkable writing achievement takes a bow in one piece of Flash ('Coming Around and Going Around) which struck a chord with me, as I grew up reading and loving her 'Little Women' series. One of the darker pieces 'The Unbeliever' is quite chilling in its apparent casualness on the surface but reveals the horrors which lie beneath. This is a collection well worth dipping into.  
 
ISBN: 9781910542101
 
 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Fog Lane

 


Fog Lane is a collection of stories about memory. Many of the stories have been published online and in magazines. They were written over a long period of time. The oldest, The Rose Garden was first written in about 2007 and published in Orbis. The last one in the book, Here Comes the Sun was completed just recently. The stories in this book vary from the humorous to the sad to the macabre. They are all short stories of under a thousand words.

 

RRP £7.00

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For me, the best stories in this wonderful collection are the ones that leave the most unsaid — “The Mums”, “A Good Night’s Sleep Guaranteed”, “The Street With No Name”. There’s humour — the house sitter who discovers there are four bathrooms in the house, takes a dump in each one and doesn’t flush. But there’s an underlying sadness too — the husband struggling to sleep in an icy hotel room who thinks about the “warm body” of his “absent wife”. We don’t need to know the backstory, about why he’s on his own and what has happened to his wife — like any good short-short, the gaps are there for us to fill in ourselves.

A beautifully observed and immensely assured collection.  
 
ISBN: 9781910542088

Monday, June 21, 2021

Three Books by Dawn Knox

 

 
This is an anthropomorphic romp guaranteed to cheer you up in these times of gloom and doom. 
 
                                                         Fantastic collection of short stories 

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Who Will Be My Friend?

 

 

'Who Will Be My Friend?' is a story about friendship, aimed at children approximately three to eight years of age. It features a  Baby Bunny who is lonely and is looking for a friend to play with.  Although the bunny meets lots of other animals, because of their differences, they give him reasons why they can't become his friend.  Finally however, Baby Bunny does succeed and finds a friend to play with and is never lonely again.

RRP £6.00

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This book is a gentle soft friendly book suitable for very young children under three. It introduces them to the concepts of different animals and their features. The theme highlights the mistake of judging too quickly and thus jumping to conclusions. Not only does this show a flaw in the judgement of the Judge but it also closes off the world of opportunities to connect and befriend others at different levels. It is a useful tool to introduce children to this concept for developing relationships as they grow up and widen their horizons. It turns respecting difference on its head and reminds us to celebrate what we have in common. We may not be able to form deep friendships with everyone but the book reminds us that by finding SOMETHING in common however small with people will build the foundations for a peaceful community and enhanced relationships. In short emotional intelligence!  
 
ISBN: 9781910542125

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Spectrum

 


A collection of one hundred and ten pieces of flash-fiction and poetry. You probably won’t like all of them, and some of them might even disgust you, or make you uncomfortable. But stick with it. Look at overarching themes within each coloured block. Find the puns in certain titles. Research the colours that you’ve never heard of. Try and work out which stories are complete fabrications, which ones contain nuggets of truth,  and which ones are versions of real life events.

RRP £7.00

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I was completely blown away by this amazing collection. To start with I was very unsure whether it was of my taste, but Christopher really pulled it out of the bag. Clever, very clever. Look forward to seeing what you do next. You've taken writing to a whole new level for me. 
 
A brilliant set of stories, told wonderfully. They challenge the norm and drag you in. At times I felt like an outsider looking into a world I hardly knew. It can make you feel dirty, some uncomfortable moments that will challenge the reader, not a bad thing at all. Highly recommend you buy this book.  
 
Gorgeous and provocative in all the right ways.
 
ISBN: 9781910542132

Saturday, June 19, 2021

The Best of CafeLit 6

 

 

Each story in this little volume is the right length and quality for enjoying as you sip the assigned drink in your favourite Creative Café. You need never feel alone again in a café. So what's the mood today? Espresso? Earl Grey tea? Hot chocolate with marshmallows? You'll find most drinks in our drinks index.

 

RRP £6.00

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Contributors: 
Janet Bunce, Alan Cadman, Patsy Collins, Helen Combe, Hannah Constance, David Deanshaw, Alyson Faye, Linda Flynn, Michael Hennessy, Vicky Jacobson, Jasmin L Jackson, Gill James, Lloyd Jenkinson, Dawn Knox, Helen Laycock, Roger Noons, Stuart Page, Jenny Palmer, James Phillips, Z.L. Porter, Paula R C Readman, Penny Rogers, Allison Symes, Alun Williams, Lisa Williams, Robin Wrigley.  
ISBN: 9781910542170
 


























Friday, June 18, 2021

Extraordinary


These stories – some light and some dark – were written over several years. A few, such as Henry’s Box, were the result of writing prompts from one of my writing groups, Basildon Writers, while others were sparked by random sights, such as someone’s tattoo, or by snatches of overheard conversation. As for the rest, I can’t recall any particular event triggering them, so can only conclude the initial idea popped into my head when I wasn’t paying attention. And sometimes I find those sort of stories turn out to be the strangest of them all. Whether you prefer light or dark stories, I hope there is something amongst this eclectic collection that will appeal to you.

RRP £7.00

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Dawn Knox has created a lovely mix of horror, sci-fi and gently amusing short stories. These are great small bites to read when you're too busy to swallow a whole book at once - although having said that, I still found it difficult to put down! I found my "I'll just read one story as I eat lunch" turned in to 2 or 3! But I think my overall feeling is that they're so imaginative, far more than the usual run of short stories. Places, times and situations are all such that you might find in a full length novel. A great read.   
 
Fantastic collection of short stories, wasn't sure if these would be my thing as I'm not really a sci fi type girl but I'm so glad I downloaded these as I really enjoyed them, in fact my favourite one of all turned out to be set on a space station lol. Definitely worth spending your pennies on and an author I will be looking out for in the future as I just love her writing. 
 
What can I say, I loved Dawn's first novel and the amazing second novel but this book is in my playing field and I LOVE IT! amazing stories from the mind of someone who knows her topics. You will not be disappointed to go on these journeys and be as amazed as I am. Well Done to the author and I hope She will write more stories like these in the future. 
ISBN: 9781907335518  

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Tales from the Upper Room

 


Be wowed by the dark tales: a modern day Little Red Riding Hood – as you have never seen her before. You will wait for the Reaper to come and you’ll encounter ghosts in different forms. Laugh at how Mavis and cat, Cuddles, and a glass of Lambrusco manage to start World War III, and how a job search lands aging Mr Montegoo the perfect job. Read about war, about hate, and about love. Encounter the power of what-if moments, love that endures, lovers that got away and the effect of the choices we make in life.

There is everything from poignant and thought- provoking stories and poems, to a beautiful sonnet and even some limericks thrown in…

The collection is written by established writers as well as writers making their debut. Come on in to the Upper Room and find your favourites.

Profits from the sale of this book will be donated to Havens Hospices:
www.havenshospices.org.uk who help adults and children in Essex. Their message is simple, but one we should all heed. It’s about ‘making every day count.’

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A wonderful collection of amazing poetry and stories by budding new and more established Writers. Some to make you laugh, some to make you stop and think, but all for a great cause. Proceeds to go to the Haven Hospices.  
 
Some really good entertaining stories/poems here and it is in aid of a very worthwhile charity. 
 
What a fantastic book with lots of stories and poems,that will make you laugh and think too. The poems by Tracey Phillips are extremely good. Love this book, and I recommend it.
 
Contributors  
Bianca Eleanor, Amber Graelin, Debz Hobbs-Wyatt, Phil Horscroft, Adam Isherwood, Alan Jacobson,
Vicky Jacobson, Julie Kendall, Henry Lewi, Robert Parker, Tracey Phillips, Margaret Potter, Peter Sandling, Gini Scanlan, Dave Traer, Paul Westgate, Colin Wyatt.
 
ISBN: 9781907335198

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Citizens of Nowhere

 

Theresa May sparked a powerful debate when she announced that global citizens were citizens of nowhere. She also gave us a marvellous title and a great theme for a book. Is a global citizen really a citizen of nowhere? This collection reacts to this question and explores some possible answers. Each story gives us a definition of one global citizen and shows how this individual contributes to the world.

We approached several writers who we knew cared about these matters and who also write beautifully. Other stories just fell into our laps – they had been submitted to other anthologies and seemed to suit this one.

 

RRP £7.00

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Short stories on the theme of Citizens of Nowhere. I am not normally a fan of short stories , but found this to be a collection of well written, engaging stories.  
 
 
Contributors:
Ea Anderson,  Jennifer Burkinshaw, Neil Campbell, Sarah Dobbs, Vanessa Gebbie, Alan Gibbons, Vanessa Harbour, Debz Hobbs-Wyatt, Matevž Hönn, Gill James, Karen Kendrick, Jenny Palmer 
ISBN: 9781907335532


Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Glit-er-ary

 

 

This glittery collection of glit-er-ary tales will add some sparkle to your life. You will meet all kinds of interesting characters facing all kinds of interesting dilemmas. You will learn that all that glitters is most certainly not gold. The stories are funny, sad, poignant…  the glitter comes in shades of dark and light. But all will leave their sparkle in your imagination.

RRP £9.00 

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This book is a little gem.
Some beautiful writing - thoroughly enjoyed this as something to dip in and out of for some much needed escapism 



Wonderful selection of stories to add some sparkle to your life. Really enjoyed them; great to dip in and out of. You find something fresh every time

 

 

Contributors: 

Gail Aldwin, Sally Angell, Mary Bevan, Christopher Bowles, Margaret Bulleyment, Elizabeth Cox, L.G. Flannigan, Yasmina Floyer, Linda Flynn, AJ Humphrey, Catrin Kean, Stuart Larner, Cathy Leonard, Kate Lowe, Michael O’Connor, Paula R C Readman, Deborah Rickard, L.F. Roth, Theresa Sainsbury, Dianne Stadhams, Julie Swan, David Trebus, Clare Weze, S. Nadja Zajdman,   
 
ISBN: 9781907335556 

 

 


Sunday, June 13, 2021

Potpourri

 

 

Somewhere between working twelve hour shifts at a tax firm and cramming for exams, these stories and poems tumbled onto torn sheets and paper napkins. Potpourri is an attempt at preventing the literary world slipping away and regaining a sliver of that bookish world.

RRP £6.00

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'Another excellent collection of stories from independent publisher Chapeltown Books, who are giving authors of quirky fiction a voice. This collection by Anusha VR will make your blood run cold, touch you at some wonderfully appropriate endings (am loathe to say more - no spoilers here!), and entertain you. I read the book in one sitting on a train journey and was gripped by each story. Well done, Anusha! She also gives some evocative descriptions despite a limited word count, flash fiction being what it is, and opens eyes to other worlds and viewpoints. A great achievement and I hope Anusha will be producing a follow-up book in due course.'
 
A collection of flash, poetry and short stories that take you around the globe, and in which we encounter an eclectic mix of characters, including tigers, fairies, a crocodile, and a strange librarian. The stories have a great sense of place and are loaded with evocative description. Many have dark themes, and are imbued with yearning and unfulfilled lives, where money matters more than happiness. There's a fascinating mix of cultures, and a few interesting 'state of the nation' stories that I particularly enjoyed. 
 Travel around the world with this collection of short fiction. Meet characters and situations which will surprise and at times alarm. Quite a read!   
 
ISBN: 9781910542217 

Saturday, June 12, 2021

The House on Schellberg Street

 


Renate Edler loves to visit her grandmother in the house on Schellberg Street. She often meets up with her friend Hani Gödde who lives nearby. This year, though, it is not to be. Just a few weeks after a night when synagogues are burned and businesses owned by Jews are looted, Renate finds out a terrible secret about her family.


At a time when the world is at war and the horrors of the Holocaust are slowly becoming apparent, Renate has to leave behind her home and her friends, and become somebody she never thought she could be.


The house on Schellberg Street needs to stay strong. Will it and those who work in it be strong enough? Will Renate ever feel at home again? And what of those left behind?

RRP £10.00

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'This is a lovely take on the kindertransport phenomenon. The story is told partly through the experience of one girl sent to England at the dawn of the Second World War, to escape persecution because of her Jewish ancestry, and partly through the exchange of letters of a number of young women who experienced the war in Germany. There is a link between Renate, the transported girl, and the letter writers, and this link is slowly revealed to us as the war progresses. Like many good stories, it's a mixture of real-life and imagination, and it rings true.

In an added twist, the personification of the Third Reich has a voice in this book, and makes its own unpleasant but effective contributions to the story.'
 
'This is a great cross-over book with an appeal to teenagers and adults alike. It gives an insight into how people's lives were torn apart by the war and how they managed to adjust and survive. A must-read for anyone studying World war II. Anyone who enjoyed 'The boy with the striped pyjamas' will love it.'
I really enjoyed this. I know many ladies of this generation and in and from Germany, and it has a clear ring of truth to it.    
 
ISBN: 9781910542231

Between the Lines Pam LIne

  After an eventful life with four husbands, consecutively, and many tears in Spain and France, Pam has returned to her Yorkshire roots wh...