Before I begin my review I have to fair warn that this isn’t going to be the typical review I do, on a count of this is a collection of 40 short stories and some poems. I’m going to base my review on the overall view of the authors writing style and then depict my favorite pieces and add in a few tidbits here and there. With that said here’s the review:
First thing you must understand about his book/short stories is this isn’t classified in any way as Young Adult and therefore the review has to be adjusted to fit the needs of an adult fantasy book. The first thing I noticed about this authors writing is the fact that all ordinary thoughts/notions/ideas are out the window. What these stories contained was far from anything I’ve read before and I think that’s what threw me off at the beginning. It really took me awhile to adjust the authors writing style and ideas. Some of the stories I’ll never even dream of ever understanding while others I’ve taken to heart and enjoyed quite a bit. While the authors writing can be a bit disorienting and disorganized at times it was magnificent at others. My favorite part of this collection of writing had to be the poems. Some of them had such an impact on me as a person that I found it quite enjoyable. I mean the way the author worded some of the ideas and stories was both creative and clever. I remember in my creative writing class just last spring when my teacher told us the key to writing a good poem is to find a different way to say something so simple and this author certainly did just that. His poems were original and dark; they evoked both memories of mine and the feeling of awe. But as for the stories though I did enjoy a few most I found too confusing and weird; they either ended too abruptly or ended with no message made clear. Now some of these stories did have a feel of authentic reading; like something you could perhaps find in a classical novel. It had that old worn out feel and I loved that about the few I enjoyed. One that I both found amusing and so relatable was “Death and the Merchant” it had a clever idea and story that I found myself nodding alongside it. My favorite poem has to be “I Heard the Mermaids Singing”. My favorite set of lines is,
“ “Come, walk into the sea,”
and all the waves that break are like
White horses sent for me.”
There’s just something very poetic about it, especially when he talked about the waves and comparing them to white horses, there’s so much hidden and in depth perception in those two lines; I’m very impressed. I wished I could have enjoyed the rest of the book more; perhaps it’s my age that’s preventing me from seeing the true beauty hidden within these stories and perhaps when time has had its way with me I’ll be able to re-read this and see a new light in them. Just for now I found the stories to be too weird and too confusing.
Death gets a roommate...
An electronic Pope faces a difficult theological question...
A wicked vizier makes a terrible bargain...
44 stories. 19 poems. No whiny vampires. There's a thin line between genius and insanity, and James Hutchings has just crossed it - but from which direction?
I would recommend this to readers who have a keen eye for unique literature such as this. I would also recommend poetic lovers, the poems themselves are worth reading in this book, and some were really well written and betrayed. I definitely wouldn’t recommend this to readers and lovers of YA; this is something you won’t enjoy. I wouldn’t recommend this to people who don’t have an open mind and to those who don’t like disorganized and confusing stories. Though I didn’t particularly enjoy most of this book, I do give it three stages of blooming, for the poems themselves; they were very much enjoyable.