Sunday, November 7, 2010

My First Ebook Purchase- Just Another Day in Paradise

Well, another Luddite has fallen-- I have joined the digital revolution, and bought my first ebook. The world has changed, and so I must adapt.

Now understand, I'm Old School, and as a lover of books (both reading and writing), am firmly sold on print versions, which I'll always keep in my heart. Yet I see the expansion of books to digital format as an addition, not a replacement. Even thinking of offering my own novels in this format, rather than embroil myself in the dying world of big publishing.

My standards for fiction are high, and my budget low, so most of what I read is borrowed from friends of from the library. When I plunk down my limited cash for a book, it better give me some bang for my buck.

So for my first ebook, I chose carefully. Katherine Tomlinson, the editor of Dark Valentine, recently came out with a collection of her short stories, Just Another Day in Paradise. As a new reader (and contributor) of Dark Valentine, I like what they put out. So I thought there was a good chance I'd like the stories written by an editor who publishes the kind of story I like.

Am very pleased to say that I hit the jackpot. The collection is superb, well worth the purchase price and the time spent devouring all the stories. You get the visceral punch right right from the beginning, with the first piece (also the title story). It's written in the second person, always a tough act to bring off, but managed here to effect (as are others later on in the collection). It's a pointed tale of the horrors of modern life, and how easily someone just gets overwhelmed. It's a frightening reminder of how close to the line we all are, and how a simple nudge in the wrong direction can be fatal.

So much of current horror writing is crude, tasteless, terrible, cardboard blood-splattering, but that's not the case here. These well-written stories are full of character, and tell what happens to us when things take a turn to the dark side. This will be a hit with fans of Stephen King, tales in a similar vein, but given a personal stamp by the author.

So when you're in the mood for a shiver of frisson, or "exploring the dark heart of urban living," pick up a copy and settle in for some chills.

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