Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Collection of Dark Short Stories

I have "known" author Amy Browne for several years now, via Facebook and other online venues for writers. I knew she wrote a lot of fiction in her free time, but I had never read any of it before. So, when she offered A Collection of Dark Short Stories for free for Kindle, I decided to download them and check them out.

They are very short stories, so the collection of 5 was easy to get through in well under an hour for a fast reader. They definitely all have a dark spin to them all. I think one of my favorites was

"What Is Murder Between Friends?" is the first story in the collection. The narrator is hoping to purge herself of her sins before she dies. The opening of it reminded me a bit of Edgar Allen Poe. The secret between the friends is definitely macabre, but I felt like it could have been fleshed out a little more. I want more details!

"Shiner's Diner" shares the truth about the local diner and the town's workers. As I read it, all I could think of was the line from Fried Green Tomatoes: "The secret's in the sauce!"

"Burn Witch Burn" examines a nasty relationship between two young sisters.

"Do Not Eat the Brownies" tells of a schoolteacher's revenge on her nasty students. Though I could somewhat see it coming, I still enjoyed it.

"Through the Eyes of an Angel" is the final story and probably my favorite. Emma is dealing with the death of her husband and running her farm all by herself. When some men come to help her out, trouble quickly brews.

The substance of the stories were generally enjoyable. Like I said earlier, I do wish the first story had a bit more detail in it. It seemed to glaze over what could be some really good material. I think it could easily turn into a short novel!

The only thing that needs to be done here is a quick run-through by an editor. In a couple of the stories, the perspective changes from first to third within the same page, causing minor confusion. There are also some grammatical mistakes that need to be cleaned up a bit. Otherwise, it was a fun read. I enjoyed going into this other side of Amy's mind and look forward to checking out some of her other fiction.

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