Short fiction – ep. 3

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Third post (the first one is here, the second here) where I speak about some short but beautiful books.

  • Letter from an unknown woman by Stefan Zweig
  • Address Unknown by Kathrine Kressmann Taylor
  • The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter

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Two novels and the circus

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The circus may be loved or not – honestly I’m not a fan of the genre, maybe for the animal issue, maybe because clowns are creepy – but it is surely is an interesting setting for a novel.

I recently read 2 novels set in a circus, the former, “The night circus” by Erin Morgenstern is pure magic, consequently attractions are irreal and original, while the latter, “Pantomime” by Laura Lan, has the cirucs as a part of a more complex story (that developes in a series of novels). In this second case the circus is more similar to the ones we can find in reality: the commitment but also the multicultural society are well described.

Circus setting and description are better dealt with in “Pantomime”, the general plot and costruction of the novel are better in the “The night circus” (that also has a very nice cover).

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At the Mouth of the River of Bees: Stories by Kij Johnson

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The collection contains various stories by Kij Johnson, from the short story to the novelette. On sf-signal it’s possible to read the table of contents with the links to the stories available on line.

The stories covers the various themes, some have in commons the love for the animals (At the Mouth of the River of Bees, 26 Monkeys. Also The Abyss, The horse raiders, Wolf trapping, The Cat Who Walked a Thousand Miles, The Evolution of Trickster Stories Among the Dogs of North Park After the Change), others the passion for oriental cultures (Fox Magic, Chenting, in the Land of the DeadThe Empress Jingu Fishes, The Cat Who Walked a Thousand Miles).

I’m certain that it is not possible to like completely a stories collection: there will always be something we do not like or we are not interested in enough, this collection instead is almost perfect, the stories are them all intense and rich of peculiar elements, the one I like the most (but they are all beautiful, so difficult to chose):

  • Fox Magic
  • My Wife Reincarnated as a Solitaire
  • Chenting, in the Land of the Dead
  • The Empress Jingu Fishes
  • The Evolution of Trickster Stories Among the Dogs of North Park After the Change

and Ponies that is the perfect short story, read it .

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* At the Mouth of the River of Bees: Stories by Kij Johnson – ★★★☆☆

*I read this book in English

Miriam Black so far

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Miriam Black, the main character of a series of novels by Chuck Wendig, is able to see how a person dies after a touch,
The series, to me engaging and fun, is not suited for who does not like to read violent episodes or a colorful language (both things the novels are full with).
Miriam, once a protagonist able to save herself, may be a little unrealistic, but I like a lot her adventures.

Another plus of these novels are the covers by Joey Hi-FI, amazing: the whole story in an image.

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