Book review – Recovering Apollo 8 by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Recovering Apollo 8 book coverMost fiction writers shy away from using real people in their work, but not Katrine Kathryn Rusch (hereafter to be called KKR in this review).

The title story of Recovering Apollo 8 And Other Stories is an award-winning re-imagining of the Apollo 8 launch, examining what would have happened if that space flight had been unsuccessful in its mission to orbit the moon.

By telling the tale from the point of view of Richard, a man who had been a child when the launch took place, she gives the piece a deeply personal viewpoint that makes it identifiable to all, so that the moment when he believes he about to meet the recovered crew for the first time is palpably intense. ‘”He had waited a lifetime for this. He wished the internal mikes were off. He wanted to whisper, “Welcome home, gentlemen.'” Continue reading

Travel, tales and imaginings

Carbis BayI’ve quite a day, tucked up in my writing room as rain has drizzled down the window. Hard to believe that this time last week I was enjoying Cornish beaches in the sunshine! I’ve been busy writing about that trip for Travelbite, and doing some other bits of travel writing for other titles too – some wonderful escapism.

A Dark Imagined Bristol cover

I’ve also been very restless because A Dark Imagined Bristol – the first anthology from the Bristol Fiction Writers’ Group – went live on Amazon this morning, with two of my tales in it!

Restoration image cr Liz AscottMy stories are ‘Restoration’ and ‘Untrue Blue’ – this artwork for the former (shown left) – a tale of two sisters wrangling their differences in a cemetery – is by talented local artist Liz Ascott, who is also a member of the writing group and has stories in the anthology.

On a separate but equally happy note, I’ve spent the latter part of my working day struggling with the back cover copy for my debut short story collection, Remember Me To The Bees, due out later this year from Scopophilia Publishing.

Exciting times!

Book review – A Girl’s Arm by Gee Williams

A Girl's Arm by Gee WilliamsThe Knight’s Move, the opening story in Gee Williams’ collection, transports you to a cliff-face where guilt and memory meet an intent not quite specified. As with much of the best storytelling, a lot is is left unsaid, and what is said is raw, sharp, and sour-tasting in places, exquisitely sublime in others: a combination that works well for the reader.

By the end of the tale I feel that I know exactly how to climb an all-but sheer rock-face and the accompanying sense of weightless, a sensation that carried on for much of the collection, as Gee’s words you, then dip you from one life to another.

Most short story collections are a journey of sorts, as you travel from character to character, scenario to scenario, taking in the different views along the way. Continue reading