NUMBER OF PAGES: 114
SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: Review copy from the writer – Sharath Komarraju in exchange for an honest review.
Short stories seem to be the “in” thing in town these days. Turns out this writer also caught up on this trend and managed to deliver a perfect book of horror stories.
Set in the fictitious village of Rudrakshapalem , the book is a collection of ten horror stories. All the stories have a paranormal element in play. Few of the stories were quite chilling while the others didn’t manage to make such an impact. My personal favorites were “The Milk is Sour” – A story which purely elaborates how guilt wrecks a person, “Peaceful are the Dead” – A story that combines values and folklore. One story which I couldn’t understand at all was “The Sitarist of Palem”- this story was a bit confusing. I felt the paranormal element at play wasn’t well executed. One story that totally stood out was “Dear House” – this story was narrated backward. As in,chronologically backward and completely spooked me at one point.
Overall, the way the writer built up the village piece by piece in all stories, reminded me of the village of Malgudi (from the book of Malgudi Days by R.K.Narayan), albeit a dark one. Obviously the writer managed to accomplish the intention of giving this eerie feel. It’s been ages since I read a book of this genre, needless to say, the narration, the plot and the characterization were good enough for me to enjoy the book !
MY SAY: A simple book that packed a punch.
BOREDOM QUOTIENT: 1/5 (Lower the better)
OVERALL RATING: 4/5
AUTHOR LINKS: Goodreads
BOOK LINKS: Amazon
GENRE: Fiction – Short Stories
Reading a book is always a life altering experience. Some books have this capability to end up changing the way you process your thoughts. This book was one such experience for me.
The book has 12 short stories based on incidents of acts against humanity. Each story typically has a map pointing the geographical location where which the story is set. These are probably place that we can’t really identify. Each story is also accompanied by a short note which has links about the actual incident that it is based on. These incidents have simply faded out over the period of time lost or lost as noise that is telecasted or printed in the name of “news”. How many of us can really even recollect listening or reading about the atrocious Rwandan genocide or Srebrenica Massacre? Even if we do read toned down reports of such inhumane acts, do we imagine what it really would be like to be caught in total turmoil? But by imagining or reading about inhumane acts like genocide or Bachha Baazi or prostitution, can lost lives and live hood be regained? Or can lost innocence be recovered? This book answers these questions in a very subtle but effective manner.
The book has been very aptly titled and cover of the book justifies the story. Though the incidents are different the stories ultimately conveyed just one emotion – pain. Pain of separation due to death, pain of losing your home, pain of losing your innocence – it’s just pain all the way. This made the stories a tad predictable. Though the writer employed parallel narration, it sort of ended up being a bit ineffective thanks to the totally predictable outcome. The writer isn’t obviously to be blamed for predictable outcomes, it’s just us humans who have become predictable with violence.
MY SAY: An intense read. Not for the weak hearted.
BOREDOM QUOTIENT: 2/10 (Lower the better)
OVERALL RATING: 10/10
NOTE: The overall rating for this book is in conflict with the average rating that I normally use. This is totally justified as the stories made me realize I’m more than lucky to have a roof over my head and constant supply of meals three times a day. The Kite Runner made me realize I’m lucky for what I am today, this book reinforced it.
GENRE: Fiction Short Story Collection
NUMBER OF PAGES: 276
SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: Review copy as part of NjKinnyâs blog tours. Thanks a lot!
A short story collection centering sewing as the theme yet under the genres of romance, mystery, thriller and political events - this whole concept of simply unimaginable to me. Moreover, the title by it is rather intriguing â how on the earth can sewing be dangerous - Unless of course, the writer decided to refer some other activity metaphorically as sewing. The cover simply amplified my curiosity for it was a patchwork quilt of images. I really had to pick up this book.
Needless to say, the book really didnât disappoint me. All the eleven short stories were equally just brilliant. The writer, S R Mallery, has simply given the art of sewing a totally new dimension. Can you imagine a patchwork quilt serving as a map of codes for liberating Negro slaves? Can you even think of patchwork quilt being used to smuggle forged German passports for Jewish nationals? This writer did just that in her stories. Each and every story dealt with different types of characters ranging from a newlywed woman trying to make her husband happy to differently abled yet talented slave escaping from her masterâs clutches. Each and every story was of a different genre namely â paranormal, historical, political, romance, mystery. This made the book a complete package. Though the writer has used the most common historical scenarios like the Salem witch trial, The Holocaust, American Dark Age of Slavery, she has present all of them in an entirely different perspective. She simply integrated sewing with all the above historical events in a brilliant manner and the result â a never thought of short story!
The writing was crisp and perfect with adequate importance given to the history or the genre in question. The characterization obviously was spot on and very much apt for a short story collection. But the highlight of the book would be the emotions. I experienced all emotions that each character emoted in the story â be is happiness or a sense of determination or agony. This is the handwork of brilliant writing!
MY SAY: A Must read collection of short stories.
PLOT : 9/10
BOREDOM QUOTIENT: 0/10 (the lower the better and book wasnât one bit boring)
OVERALL RATING: 9/10
Welcome to my stop on the Blog Tour of Sewing Can Be Dangerous And Other Small Threads by S.R Mallery. This is a collection of 11 short stories. Featuring stories from genres like mystery, history, romance and action, this anthology has been highly rated by readers all over the world and has 4.8 out of 5 rating on Goodreads.
And I am so excited to share this book on my blog today. Also, Sewing Can Be Dangerous And Other Small Threads by S.R Mallery is only 99c/Rs. 63 from a limited time!
~About the Book~
No. of Pages: 276
Publication Date: December 2013
Genre: Historical Fiction, Anthology, Short Stories, Romance, Mystery, Action
The eleven long short stories in "Sewing Can Be Dangerous and Other Small Threads" combine history, mystery, action and/or romance, and range from drug trafficking using Guatemalan hand-woven wallets, to an Antebellum U.S. slave using codes in her quilts as a message system to freedom; from an ex-journalist and her Hopi Indian maid solving a cold case together involving Katchina spirits, to a couple hiding Christian passports in a comforter in Nazi Germany; from a wedding quilt curse dating back to the Salem Witchcraft Trials, to a mystery involving a young seamstress in the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire; from a 1980âs Romeo and Juliet romance between a rising Wall Street financial âstarâ and an eclectic fiber artist, to a Haight-Asbury love affair between a professor and a beautiful macramÃ© artist gone horribly askew, just to name a few.
Grab the kindle/Nook book at just $0.99 or Rs. 63!
Amazon IN: Kindle Book
B&N: Nook Book
~Meet the Author~
Pinterest: (I have some good history boards that are getting a lot of attentionâhistory, vintage clothing, older films)
$25 Amazon Gift Card
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