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5.0 out of 5 stars good short stories, 1 Feb 2011
This review is from: Coyote Ugly (Kindle Edition)
This is a collection of short stories, it does not appear at first to have a theme, but there is a flavour of south/southern america running though them. This is enhanced by the inclusion of a coupld of simple recipies, which i at first found strange but later realised that his made the taste of the book come through so much better. In this way the book as a whole does manage to hang together as a collection rather than being stories just put together because they were by the same author (as some collections are apt to be)
My first complaint it the title - it does in the end suit both the collection and the story that it is taken from - it is the title of a recent film. This connection caused two problems: one that I could not help making the connection at the start, which disrupted me getting into the initial story, two trying to locate the book to add to my library here was impeeded by having to wade through titles connected to the film (please people films are films and books are books, I know it cannot just be be that has something against the poor novilasation of films)
My second complaint was that this was an ebook. It's not what you think, my complaint is that i did not get the expected reader for christmas, which is hardly the fault of the book but it annoyed me nonetheless. The loan of a double sided laser printer solved the stuck in the office senario, also allowed me to try out the book binding class I took many years ago (result was less than convincing but was at least easy to read)
Mother ditch, is the first story in the collection and is an atmospheric indtroduction to the rest of the book. it proceed at what appears to be a slow pace but actually is a very compact and well writted short story. The main character is the ditch and she is most definatly a she. Her interest in the goingings on of the community arround her and her comassion for them for me says this. I would commend this story on the character that the author has managed to give this waterway alone, but there is ofcourse more to the tale than that
Rescue work - This was not my favourite of the stories. I know that is because for some reason I kept thinking of the ghost whisperer on television and the way that they deal with something similar. This was less interested in the crossing over but more the people who were involved and is a good story of love and emotion.
The Cignius sedonia Caper. I do like crime and I do like science fiction but this tale was not quite what I would ahve wanted. I am sorry but it closed to neetly. The main charcter was too human, and the rest of the animals were too like it. oddly enough it was the emotions that did not get me here, the basic story like did appeal (you will have to read it to find out what actually happens)
Coyote ugly. This is perhaps my favourite of the collection and one can easily see why it was selcted as the lead story. it has both a good story line and characters that I got involved in straight away. what more can I say, it was a good all round read.
on swans wings. a deceptivly simple tale that still amaged to pull on my heart strings. The author managed to get into the femal character showing both her frivillous side where she would fall in love yet the resigned nature of knowing that this would not affect her life in any way. Knowing that this was her one night to be out in her life and look at boys in this way before she would meet the chosen husband. she was going to be happy no matter how things went and saw the realities of the man she though it was going to be all to clearly, and as was the time knew she woulf have to accept.
Stranded. I did catch onto where the story was going before the end, but it was still a good tale. the interplay between the charters made this rather than the plot.
The courship of captain swenk. set in the american civl war, i think, ment that much of what was happening went clean over my head. not certain which side was which and I know that american's will hate me for saying I was just not interested enough to care. The main charcters however I think were from the south with the setting in the south also, making the rebels from the north. Please don't hit me if I am wrong. much of the story did appeal to me and the connections between the charactes were good. I did like the idea of a less than attract women getting her man by hiding his horse.
First love - sorry this seemed to drag for me at the begining, however it did set the world for what would come later. The lure of the stranger, the speed of a young heart and the knowlege that love is better when you are not uncertain. I found the feeling of the young girl in this very much taken into myself and I could feel her pain. lovely
Dawn's early light. Mr Parker the gentleman reporter and Miss Tamer his story. You can feel the age of this story, this is no tabloid reporter transported to a bygone era but a gentleman of that time with the same determination to get his story. It is the politness that seems to come with this age of story that intrgues me, especially the way that the tension still manages to build. It was well crafted to give a surprise int he middle and a gentle reflection at the end, a time for the gentleman to show his true grit.
Kind Hunter. This was a very atmospheric story that drew you into it and the world being described. However good this was I found that I did not retain the storyline. perhaps I was approaching reading overload from the variety presented in this collection of stories. For the tale was indeed a good one and bears well even with rereading. You can feel the shivers in the air arround you, i found myself stopping to see what I could hear.
Emancipation. A made world that had been in exsistance for so long that the regual maintenance tasks have been turned into ritual. There is not the religious element towards the maintinance there is still the knowlege of what it does. Dispite working for however long this has worked the local council still thinks they can change it for the better. I do like that the custodian came up with the idea of using the ritual to show how many people were against the change in the end. this is good tale telling.
Rocket boy on call. this is the shortest talein the book but still manages to convey emotions and a narrative.
Arroyo de Oro. This is perhaps one of my favourite's in this collection. It has the solving of a crime (main character is FBI) it has the apparent mysical element and it has the tecnological edge. The character of sandra realy managed to me me through the story. I can see myself with the same comfusions, the not wnating to admit when things confuse and then the warmth of understanding once things have been put into place (while also the need to prove it before telling all. This speaks of all people who have to face what they are not expecting and having to live upto ideals that they did not think they would have to. The actual tale lives up to the crafting and setting.
The fullsome suit. I am sorry this this tale for me did not live up to the rest of the collection. I foind it a little confusing and needed the historical notes to make sense of it in the end.
Draw. What I liked most about this story is the confusion in the main character as to whether he should call out the emergency services, after all he is not some newly arrived to go panicing over every small thing. This is in the end a passage into adulthood story, a good one.
The cornfield. This is the other story in the collectio that I do not like. For me it does not have enough narrative. gunbattle, lost dog, change in view of war. we cannnot have everything can we.
For those of you who have managed to plough your way through this epic review, I am assuming that you can tell that I liked this collection of short stories, each one is as different from his neighbour so as to be obviously a seperte work (I am aware of someone who read a collection of short stories and thought it was a bad novel as it did not make a complete story, not a chance of that happeing here) Each of the stories showes a knowlege of the writers craft and an understanding of keeping a story going while also giving us the emotions or atmosphere. Each story is also infact a story and not an extract from a longer work.
This is a collection of well written short stories, what more can I say
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Coyote Ugly: and other tales
Coyote Ugly: and other tales by Pati Nagle (Paperback - 11 Oct 2012)
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