The Umbrella's Shade and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Short Story Award
on May 17, 2011
This is a collection of wonderful Australian short stories. The selection is eclectic but reflects the Australia that I know. I am surprised at the winning story. It's very good, but not as good as some of the others. I guess this is the vagaries of judging. What is your good story may be my brilliant one. Perhaps I should become a judge! This book is highly recommended for anyone after a selection of clever, intriguing and delightful stories.
Between Heaven & Hell and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Flash Fiction Award
on July 25, 2011
I dished out my dosh for a second David Vernon edited book and I haven't been disappointed. These are flash fiction stories (that means that they are short and can be read between bus stops). Short they may be but that doesn't mean unsatisfying. A couple of the stories were a bit weird, but then maybe they pushed me out of my comfort zone. Nevertheless, an excellent anthology. I am keen to buy any future anthologies. I think he's on a winner.
Our Name Wasn't Written - A Malta Memoir (1936-1943)
on Sep. 06, 2011
This is a pithy and gritty memoir written by a woman who was in the midst of bringing up a family in the middle of war. The narrator, Caroline Vernon, is frank, fearless and certainly no shrinking violet when trying to get her entitlements from an uncaring military bureaucracy. An intersting insight into the Royal Navy's way of doing things.
A Visit from the Duchess and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Speculative Fiction Award
on Sep. 29, 2011
While I have enjoyed the other David Vernon edited anthologies of short stories, it was with trepidation that I purchased an anthology of speculative fiction. Horror and zombies leave me cold, However I have been pleasantly surprised. This is a top collection of speculative fiction short stories. Many of the stories contain wonderful twists and turns and despite the zombies, I loved it. Another good book to read on the bus. The winning story, "A Visit from the Duchess" is just masterful.
Lessons with my Yoga instructor
on March 25, 2012
Disappointing. This was my first foray into erotica in a very long time. The plot is clichéd, the action is clichéd and generally the writing isn't very good. The attempt at humour at the beginning relating to standing like a fool just falls completely flat. With the sex there is no sense of excitement but rather mechanical action - not helped by poor proof-reading. What is a virgina? This is a pretty important word in erotica to get correct.
Love, Pain, Blood and Tears
on April 10, 2012
There are some interesting poems here but really the teenage angst is laid on like cement on a brick — thick. There is nothing complex or interesting about Ms Bars writing. Indeed it is repetitive and dull. Where are the scintillating similes and magnificent metaphors — let alone rhyme and rhythm. Sigh.
on April 10, 2012
There is some wisdom in this little poem and some rhythm and even, gasp, some rhyme. I'd like to see authors put together anthologies and not just one tiny poem in one Smashwords book.
The Heat Wave of '76 and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Erotic Fiction Award
on April 10, 2012
Finally some quality erotica. I'm sure there is some good free stuff on Smashwords but I haven't read it yet! The stories here ARE erotic, ARE well written (I found no typos or spelling mistakes or even any grammatical errors) and ARE intriguing. As this is an anthology there are different writing styles but the editor has picked a collection of really sexy material. I'm delighted with it.
on June 28, 2012
An amusing story only slightly marred by it being fairly confusingly written - but again, perhaps that was the idea!
Marngrook and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Australian History Award
on June 28, 2012
"People don't understand how desperate you have to be to eat a boot," says one of the characters in this entertaining anthology of Australian history stories. Fiction, fact, faction? It's all here and all fascinating. Does sauce on a boot make it easier to eat? Maybe this book will shed light on this question. I read this cover to cover (does that make sense with an e-book) in 48 hours. Each story is unique and gives an insight into Australian history.
The Road Home and Other Award-winning Stories from the Stringybark Short Story Awards
on July 22, 2012
This is the best Stringybark anthology I have read and I have read a few of them now - the variety of story themes is entertaining but more importantly is the quality of the writing. This is stylish writing at its best. As Julie Davies points out in her review - Kerry Cameron's story is just beautiful. It is wonderful to get an emotional response to a short story.
The Very End of the Affair
on Nov. 16, 2014
I think this is my third SB anthology and as usual it's of high production quality as well a great selection of really very funny stories. Harold Mally's stories 'God with an i' and 'Slop' were incredibly clever. A very entertaining collection of humourous short stories.