The Prey by Brett James
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
When I started reading “The Prey” my first impression was that I was going to hate it. The characters seemed more like caricatures. The main character is an unlikable spoiled rich “kid”. After reading a few more pages all the characters became believable and fit perfectly into the story (but still not that likable). Brett James pulled it all together and managed to tell an interesting and entertaining story.
The book itself is small (fits into my shirt pocket) approximately 4×6 inches. My first thought on seeing it was “where’s my gum?”. My second thought was what a brilliant way to publish short stories. I can picture people (kids) collecting and trading short stories. They would also be great to have on hand for those times when we have a few minutes to kill (short trips, waiting rooms etc.).
The book actually got a solid 3.5 stars but since it left me wanting more I rounded up to 4 stars (sometimes I round down).
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MR Trill in Hades & Other Stories by Iain Crichton Smith
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The title alone was enough to get me to pull this off the shelf and give it a read. A short short stories collection that turned out to be a nice surprise. All of the stories had a teacher and/or a school in them yet the variety of the stories were wide. The stories ranged everywhere from a relationship between a boy and his step-father (a teacher) to a horror story that really sets a mood of terror for some kids in a school after dark. As with most books of short stories, there were some hits and some misses. Many of the stories I found to be just so-so,even though the writing was still great, but a couple of the stories really made this book worth a read and the stories really stuck with me, especially the horror story.
As for recommending it I would suggest that if you run across it pick it up and enjoy, but I wouldn’t go as far as to suggest that you run out and buy it right away.
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