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.

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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
 
 

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