"Darkling Light... And Other Short Stories" is a collection of ten short tales from Jason J.R. Gaskell. The collection includes a unique approach to addiction in "The Therapist", a killer on the loose in the Nigerian jungle in "The Nightwalker", a phobias workshop gone wrong in "The Great Shave", and a brutal antihero in "Coincidence".
I’m not the world’s biggest fan of short stories if I’m honest. The format doesn't usually allow enough time to develop characters, which you empathise with and have concern over whatever fate befalls them in the end. Conversely though, they offer a welcome alternative when time is short or concentration is an issue.
Darkling Light is a collection of ten stories from Jason Gaskell; yet another new author for me this month. Saturday afternoon, I sat down with them and read the first seven straight through, only stopping because we were watching a couple of films. Sunday morning I picked up the last three and finished them.
An interesting collection and a little bit away from my comfort zone in respect of genre. Most of the stories had horror elements, with a little bit of sci-fi in a few and a touch of comedy or black humour here and there.
There’s some artwork that accompanies each story which adds to the prose. Illustrations including the cover are by Bob Veon.
Overall verdict – enjoyable and entertaining. Within the ten there were a couple that were less interesting to me than some of the others, but overall the writing was smooth, the plots were interesting and I was engaged.
Highlights were The Therapist, Metamorphosis, Coincidence and Getting Out. Gaskell shows us an interesting alternative to conventional addiction treatments and his accidental serial killer is hilarious.
4 from 5
The author was kind enough to send me a copy to look at. Available on Amazon is you fancy a change with a twist.
Col, this collection seems like a fine blend of horror and sf with the black-and-white illustrations adding to the dark nature of the overall narrative. I have read a few vintage stories on these lines.ReplyDelete
Prashant, I enjoyed this one a bit more than I thought I would, which was not exactly a surprise as such, but because of the genre-switch, a bit of a bonus.Delete
Col - It sounds like a very interesting collection. A bit off my usual path too, as it is yours. But still, that's not necessarily a bad thing. Glad you found the side trip a good one.ReplyDelete
Margot thanks - I wouldn't want to read these types of stories every day of the week, but now and then it's good.Delete
I'm not a fan of short stories myself, but this does sound interesting. Put me down as a maybe....ReplyDelete
Moira - duly noted. I think I might try a few more in future, I have a few on the pile.Delete
Interesting and I always thought that cover was arresting. I am getting over my dislike of short stories. I won't go out of my way to read them but if given an opportunity, sure, I'll read them if it's by my favorite writer (thinking of Woodrell).ReplyDelete
Keishon, I got a copy of The Outlaw Album earlier this month, but I might save it for my 2014 US state challenge.Delete
I spend a bit of time in the car waiting for wife, waiting for kids, so I may put a short story collection in there as if I'm not reading something I wasting my time. I would read queuing in the shops if I thought I could get away with it!
I don't like short stories, for the same reasons you mentioned. I love the cover though. I am planning to try more short stories. I have several books of mystery short stories, often purchased mainly for the covers.ReplyDelete
Tracy, I intend to try more next year. I think I can turn to them when I hit a bit of a funk or can't find the right book to start next. Covers suck me in more times than I care to admit!Delete