Review by Meraid Griffin
Published by Pixelhose.com
Smashwords eBook edition: ISBN: 978-0-578-11530-6
Short stories by emerging writers! I can see your face twisted into a gurn as you consider reading the Newbie’s’ work. Fear not. The metaphoric title may lead you to think along the lines – 22 Shades of Orgy, but no, it’s 22 writers laying bare their souls and fresh talent for your ultimate pleasure.
The stories, a mosaic of themes and genres, include the short, flash fiction and very inspirational anecdotes. Journey on a rollercoaster of emotions, get a sense of the unexpected in Just One Cut then feel the hope and desperation of an abandoned child in Charlie.
One of the exciting things about reading shorts, is that you can get a snifter of a genre you don’t normally read. It’s like speed dating. My speed date with Shadows of The Wind – a futuristic Sci-Fi piece, left me hoping for a second.
I’ve never been to Shanghai, but Cicadas a story of dishonest generosity written with clarity and honest recollection had me inside a home in the suburbs looking out the window at the harsh reality of the contrasting lives of rich and poor.
Mustached Murderers, a humorous tale of ridiculousness forced me to wade through my fattest dictionary only to be driven to the laptop to discover the meaning of a word. I was wondering if it even was a real word and it is. However you will have to read the book for yourself to discover the funniest word of the year for me so far.
The last story Shaho written by a displaced Iranian is a deeply disturbing and harrowing insight of atrocities carried out in many countries in conflict. The images are so graphic and vivid, that I can liken them to the effect Louis de Bernière’s Señor Vivo and the Coca Lord had on me. A painfully difficult, highly memorable read.
I enjoyed most of the stories, though a couple were not to my taste, nor did I think they were particularly great stories, however, the beauty of this collection is that you will certainly find great stories and will be on the lookout for several of the Newbies.