Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Paisley Shirt

 

'Paisley Shirt' is a fascinating collection of 27 stories that reveal the extraordinary nature of people and places. Through a variety of characters and voices, these stories lay bare the human experience and what it is like to live in our world.

 

RRP £6.00

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I never thought I was interested in flash fiction until I picked up Paisley Shirt. I have met the author so I thought I'd give it a go. I read it on the train from Tunbridge Wells to London and both the book and the journey came to an end at the exact same time!
I really enjoyed every one of Gail Aldwin's perfectly-formed little stories, and was hooked from the very first one. Each has the makings of a longer story and I'm hoping it won't be long before we see this author's name on a full-length novel.  
 
This is a Flash Fiction collection from indie publisher Chapeltown Books – it contains 27 short tales. Myriad characters stroll across the pages, chatting, falling in and out of love, getting married or divorced, raising a new born baby, running away from home, hurting each other or trying to fit into new countries’ customs. This collection is a buffet for the senses spread before us. Gail Aldwin writes in a beautifully sensory fashion, drawing us in, so we can smell and taste these tableaux. Her observational skills are precise; touched with dry humour. My personal favourite was ‘Accidental Brother’ a touching, haunting portrait of a refugee’s memories of his flight from his home country and the tragedies which occurred. Superb and thought provoking. 
 
Each of these stories captures a moment in time: a fleeting scene that may be trivial to someone else but significant for the characters involved. One of my favourite stories was 'Greenhayes' - it made me question how society likes to keep itself to itself. 'Accidental Brother' made an impact on me as well, describing the reality of life for migrants.
A lucky dip of great tales. 
 
ISBN: 9781910542293   

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