This was the first book I bought in 2014, and I'm glad I did.
After ringing in 2013 by finishing Jessica McHugh's PINS, I was excited to discover thatThis was the first book I bought in 2014, and I'm glad I did.
After ringing in 2013 by finishing Jessica McHugh's PINS, I was excited to discover that The Maiden Voyage would be released on January 1, 2014. Naturally, I bought a copy as soon as it was available from Amazon, and read it ASAP.
McHugh's novella details the brief, wondrous life of a hybrid bee-man named Sigmund Black and his rise from drone/assassin to bodyguard for the head of the world's most powerful honey company, Barbara Holloway. With a steampunk backdrop and a jelly-powered version of the Titanic (yes, THAT Titanic), this is one crazy, mixed-up world, but I loved all of the Victorian details and bee tweaks.
Rewriting history can be a challenge, but McHugh does so with a nod to both her horror roots and the idea that even free men in Victorian times were not necessarily free to do as they pleased. Sigmund Black is just a drone - or is he? Can this up-and-coming "werebee" break free from his natural instincts and fly from the hive, or will be always be a product of his evolutionary heritage, just another cog in this era's huffing, puffing machinery? You'll have to read The Maiden Voyage yourself to find out!...more
Although I've written several books for Kindle already, I'm always interested in learning new tips and tricks for creating better books. Nancy's bookAlthough I've written several books for Kindle already, I'm always interested in learning new tips and tricks for creating better books. Nancy's book offers lots of excellent, practical advice for non-fiction writers looking to amp up their production schedule - in addition to writing stronger books that will keep readers coming back for more.
Nancy's book is a quick read, because it's eliminated the fluff and cut straight to the chase. She includes step-by-step information on the tools of the trade that she employs (updated for 2014, as noted on the cover, so it's not outdated like some other how-to manuals), as well as breakdowns on how much time you should devote to each phase of your writing process. It was really interesting to see how a fellow pro breaks down her work and approaches her writing goals. Even if you don't believe that you can write a book in just 72 hours, she's got the stats to show you exactly how this is possible. Better still, she'll show you what to do to reach the goal, even if you're a slow writer or researcher. Perfect!
All in all, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to write non-fiction books, improve their writing, or make a living writing books for Kindle....more
Let's start with the disclaimers: I didn't have a shelf for westerns until I read this book, and previously, my only experience with the genre was a mLet's start with the disclaimers: I didn't have a shelf for westerns until I read this book, and previously, my only experience with the genre was a much-detested junior high school reading of Shane (which Mr. Kurtz encourages me to revisit), and the beginning of Lonesome Dove, which I eventually cast aside in favor of other pursuits. I had also read Annie Proulx's "Brokeback Mountain," and inquired as to whether Kurtz's novella was better. He said "Absolutely."
Dear reader, he was telling the truth.
So, what makes A Wind of Knives the type of western that makes gals like me, who don't care much for the genre, feel like maybe there's something to it after all?
First of all, the title is ridiculously great. I had been meaning to pick up A Wind of Knives solely based on the violent promise of its title, and I'm glad I finally did.
Secondly, although you'll find quite a lot of brooding, talk about the Texas landscape, and horseback riding, it's also obvious that this is a story that goes beyond those western clichés and offers some unique characters with complex souls.
Third, and not to spoil the plot, but this will all end badly. Maybe not "Unforgiven"-level badly, but Daniel Hayes isn't a lawman or an outlaw, at least in the six-shooter sense. He's a man who wants revenge, but like most of us average everyday vengeance-seekers, it's a dream that will never come true. And that's what I found most interesting about Kurtz's book, because the typical western, in my mind, is all about chasing down the bad guys and delivering some form of frontier justice. Is there justice in this book? Perhaps, in its way. But more likely, it's the same type of thing we humans deal with every day, as frustrating and maddening as that is, with a man stuck in the middle, trying to figure out what to do about it. Is he supposed to just let it go and move on? Even if the bad guy gets shot, does that really solve anything? And what does one do with a hole in the heart that can never be mended?
So, while the western is not likely to become my favorite genre of all time, after reading this book I can say I kinda get it. I still think Texas is a terrible place for steers, queers, and women to live (and, based on personal experience, that doesn't seem like it's ever likely to change), but I can also see why the enterprising lone wolf (or coyote) might want to test their mettle out there.
Thanks, Mr. Kurtz, for giving us this surprising little gem of a western, and I look forward to reading more of your work....more
Good idea, poor execution. (Pun intended.) There wasn't much humor to this "horror comedy," and although there was gratuitous splatter, the horror buiGood idea, poor execution. (Pun intended.) There wasn't much humor to this "horror comedy," and although there was gratuitous splatter, the horror build-up was also lacking. Why is there a murderer loose in a weight-loss camp, anyway? Nothing is ever really explained, and the ending is an overly swift wrap-up that doesn't help matters. Somehow the main character emerges triumphant, despite being at the mercy of a homicidal maniac only seconds prior. Not sure how the author jumped from point A to point Z there, and I'd like to see a more logical plot progression. Nice try, but misses the mark....more
I love Dorothy Parker. Her wit, her wisdom, her attitude, her style, and even her affinity for gin (despite my own preference for vodka). The originalI love Dorothy Parker. Her wit, her wisdom, her attitude, her style, and even her affinity for gin (despite my own preference for vodka). The original Girl New York – at least in my mind – Dorothy Parker has always been a guiding light when my own literary vision gets cloudy. Whether inventing her own terminology (“one-night stand” and “what the hell”), penning pithy poems that the world embraces as fact (“Men seldom make passes / At girls who wear glasses”), or cracking wise, she’s always been one of my favorite literary heroes. So when author and Dorothy Parker Society President Kevin C. Fitzpatrick announced his latest tribute to the lovely lady, I knew there could be nothing but fresh hell for anyone who stood between me and my DP.
Now, Dorothy Parker aficionados have surely all heard her famous cocktail quip:
I love a martini– But two at the most. Three, I’m under the table; Four, I’m under the host.
But did you know that the divine Ms. Parker never actually wrote these lines? Perhaps they were overheard at the Algonquin Round Table, her preferred hangout, or whilst enjoying a cup of bathtub gin (a recipe for which is included in the book), but as Under the Table: A Dorothy Parker Cocktail Guide will inform you, this supposed ode to the martini often found on bar napkins is not amongst Ms. Parker’s published works.
That’s just one of the many boozy tidbits you’ll imbibe as you page through Kevin C. Fitzpatrick’s unique collection of Dorothy Parker facts and classic (plus a few modern) cocktail recipes. A delightful blend of hearsay and history, musings and mixology, there’s plenty to satisfy Dorothy’s fans, as well as lots of lore to inspire cocktail enthusiasts to become new ones.
In addition to the wonderful trivia and commentary on Dottie’s life, Fitzpatrick has also included such asides as “A Guide to Speakeasy Slang,” with gems like “giggle-water” and “flat tire.” And who can resist being described as “the bee’s knees” or “cat’s meow”?
Along with an original Dorothy Parker-inspired cocktail called The Acerbic Mrs. Parker, the book also contains recipes for drinks enjoyed by or created for her fellow Algonquin Round Table wits, such as Alexander Woolcott (not, in fact, the inspiration for the Brandy Alexander, despite his insistence to the contrary), Edna Ferber, and Franklin P. Adams. I was also pleased to discover a recipe for a drink called the Espionage – one of only two in the book that contain vodka as a main ingredient – that noted Ms. Parker’s FBI file was three inches thick, despite the fact that her only arrest was at a rally for Sacco and Vanzetti. After all, isn’t there something compelling about a woman who arouses such government curiosity, despite being on (generally) good behavior?
Another unique aspect to this volume is its bicoastal focus, following Dorothy’s New York upbringing and early career through to her days in Hollywood as a screenwriter, penning such scripts as the Oscar-nominated “Smash-Up.” Instead of concentrating solely on east coast cocktails and lore, readers can enjoy drinks and stories from across the country and even around the world, with concoctions like the Mint Julep and the Cuba Libre. Even Mrs. Parker’s frenemy, Ernest Hemingway, gets to bask a bit in her reflected glory with recipes for Death in the Afternoon and the Hemingway Daiquiri.
All in all, whether you’re a Dorothy Parker devotee or a craft cocktail connoisseur – or, hell, just a lush who loves spouting poetry – be sure to add this book to your Must Read pile. Then, consider your holiday gift list solved.
(Originally posted at Black Heart Magazine)...more
Having recently found a stack of children's books in my laundry room, I decided to give these a whirl. Oddly enough, Nancy Drew solves a mystery in MoHaving recently found a stack of children's books in my laundry room, I decided to give these a whirl. Oddly enough, Nancy Drew solves a mystery in Montreal, my old stomping grounds! Naturally, I had to see what she thought of the "Paris of North America." Apparently she has some big obsession with the Big O's track - or at least her friend does.
This mystery was much easier to solve than I remember Nancy's mysteries being, at least back when I was a kid. But then again, maybe they were always that easy to see through, and I was just not as advanced a reader?
Anyway, 3 stars for trying to capture a bit of Montreal's je ne sais quoi, but if you're looking for a crazy caper and you're just a tad older than 13, you may want to check into an adult cozy mystery instead. Good for nostalgia's sake, though not for the hard-nosed armchair detective....more
Pavarti K. Tyler’s latest novella, Sugar & Salt, introduces us to the hidden world of the Sugar House. Commanded by Janice Cane, aka Miss Necia, tPavarti K. Tyler’s latest novella, Sugar & Salt, introduces us to the hidden world of the Sugar House. Commanded by Janice Cane, aka Miss Necia, the Sugar House attends to the carnal pleasures of New York City’s elite with the utmost discretion. Whatever you desire, Miss Necia’s stable of attractive, exotic and sexually skilled women can provide. But make even one mistake and you’re banned for life.
Rules are rules, and they keep the clients from getting out of line with Miss Necia as well as her “brood.”
Of course, underneath her tough-gal mistress persona, Janice longs for love and even romance. She’s been speed-dating her way through the usual crowd of losers and leftovers when she meets Salt – a man who intrigues her with his insight into both her footwear and her professional power. Has Janice finally met her match?
Sugar & Salt sets up the world in which Janice lives and works as a full-time mistress in charge of about a dozen sex workers. What could come off as a never-ending lingerie party is much more about business than pleasure, with an in-house bodyguard lurking just below the stairs and watching clients’ every move. The girls themselves are kept at a remove from prying eyes, both in terms of the clients that seek them out and as far as readers who want a peek behind those velvet curtains. We only meet Portia, Janice’s assistant (and not a working girl herself), and Caitrin, a friend who runs the neighboring burlesque club, for a taste of what happens behind closed doors.
Meanwhile, Janice runs her business more like an executive in a bustier than the dominatrix I originally pictured, based on the book’s description. Everything is ledgers and scheduling, leafing through background info on potentially dangerous clients and arranging dates for the rest. Not quite the sexy underworld one imagines when thinking of prostitution – legal or otherwise.
On the personal side, however, Janice’s romantic streak runs wide, and her desire to connect with a man she considers her equal is natural. When you’ve already got it all, at least in the material realm, who doesn’t want to find someone with whom to share it? Her connection with Salt is both humorous and sexy; she is first drawn in by his admission that he refuses to recycle, nicknaming him “Greenpeace,” until she finally discovers his true moniker.
Without giving away too much of the plot, I really liked the fact that Janice, a woman living a decidedly off-the-books life, met her match in someone so completely her opposite. The element of personal and professional danger that Tyler sets up when Salt’s employer is revealed sets off quite the chain reaction of guilt, fear and the simple insistence that love cannot, in fact, conquer all. Salt, for all his commanding presence and high-minded ideals, is a bit naïve about the very thing he does for a living. And Janice, though a much more hard-nosed realist about the danger he presents, still can’t deny her emotions or her libido.
One element of Sugar & Salt that still had me puzzled by the novella’s end was the repeated reference to Janice’s failed personal life. Was this doomed relationship the motivation for her to open the Sugar House, or was it an unrelated affair? Who was this mystery man that broke her heart, and what exactly happened there? How long has Janice been running her underground business, anyway, and what prompted her to set it up in the first place? As this is just the first novella in a planned series, perhaps these questions will be addressed in future installments, though I did find them nagging at me with their shadowy insinuations – particularly in reference to Janice’s conservative Congressman father.
Overall, I enjoyed reading this short and sexy novella, and wanted more when I reached the end. Sugar and Salt are certainly not a perfect match, and their relationship does have that star-crossed, ill-fated lovers element that suggests it can’t possibly last, but perhaps this pair will surprise us in the end. After all, who knows what might happen between the bedroom and the bordello?
(Originally posted at Black Heart Magazine)...more
I was excited to read Aloha, Mozart, a historical literary title that follows aspiring opera singer Maile Manoa from her hometown in Hawaii to the busI was excited to read Aloha, Mozart, a historical literary title that follows aspiring opera singer Maile Manoa from her hometown in Hawaii to the bustling musical city of Salzburg, Austria. Starting in the 1960s, the book traces both Maile's growth as a singer and a variety of global historic events that shape both her career and her personal life.
Dedicated to becoming a famous soprano, Maile enters the entertainment industry as an uncredited singer on a Hawaiian radio show broadcast to the mainland. When a beautiful diva comes to down, she takes a chance and sings for her, gaining access to the diva's first private instructor in New York. After training for a year with this teacher, Maile realizes she needs more in order to make it big, and asks her tutor to help her. To ascend the ladder of fame and fortune, she is told she must move to Mozart's hometown, Salzburg, for further training in classical music.
Studying with Professor Aleksander Jann in the heart of old Europe, Maile's technique vastly improves, and she is eventually asked to join the Salzburg Music Festival as a soloist - chosen personally by the famous director Werner von Wehlen. But will she be able to put aside his ties to the former Nazi regime in order to chase her own dreams of stardom?
Aloha, Mozart is a well-written tale, with plenty of unique characters in its supporting cast. Although I naturally sided with Maile in her quest to become an established soprano, even the antagonists (major and minor) were well developed and sympathetic, from Maile's grandmother - who sends her back to live with the rest of her family after she causes too much mischief chasing her musical dreams - to the imperious von Wehlen.
Starting in exotic Hawaii, it might seem odd for a girl to long for an escape from such a tropical paradise, yet author Waimea Williams spins out a convincing back story that helps readers understand Maile's desire for so much more. From her impoverished beginnings to her rebellion against the Hawaiian cultural demands that all family members share and share alike, Maile at times wants nothing more than a room of her own. Yet her ultimate goal cannot be denied; she has a talent and a passion for the opera, and she commits herself to the craft with the single-minded devotion of a novitiate.
Even when thrust into the confusing culture of Austria, with her basic German language skills and meager savings, Maile remains true to herself and her desire to succeed. And this, ultimately, is what makes Williams' book so engaging. Maile is a strong character with clear goals and a fiery personality. Without resorting to stereotypes about volcanic goddesses, Williams highlights Maile's Hawaiian influences and past with a graceful touch, contrasting them deftly with the Austrian culture and norms of the period.
Though it's a work of historic fiction, this not-so-distant past seems all too familiar, with Austria's struggles to maintain neutrality in the face of Nazism as well as the Cold War. Williams poses questions that continue to haunt readers in the 21st century, such as "What would you do for the sake of art?" and "How far would you go to follow your dreams?" Can lovers of classical music ignore the sometimes vile inspirations for their beloved musical masterpieces, or must we cast them into the dustbin of history because of their flawed creators? Is, indeed, mankind merely the manure out of which brilliant works of art are grown?
Aloha, Mozart is a beautifully crafted homage to the classical music scene, even as it reveals the true character of the men and women behind its velvet curtains.
It may not be cool or fashionable, especially amongst noir aficionados, but I’ll admit it: I love a good cozy mystAs reviewed at Black Heart Magazine:
It may not be cool or fashionable, especially amongst noir aficionados, but I’ll admit it: I love a good cozy mystery. I grew up on copies of Lillian Jackson Braun’s The Cat Who… mysteries, passed along to me after my cat-loving aunt read the latest installment. I devoured all the lady heroines I could find at the public library, whether they were sexy redhead PIs or knitting grannies who just happened to solve crimes. And lately I’ve been into the Tattoo Shop mysteries by Karen E. Olson, as well as the Dead-End Job series by Elaine Viets.
In short, I am a fan of crimes solved by armchair detectives and amateurs.
Who knows why this genre particularly appeals, but it’s probably something to do with being the type who likes to kick back and psychoanalyze people and their motives, particularly in relation to all their misdeeds. I may not always be right, but I do love to spin my theories about whodunnit and why.
So when I got the chance to take a look at Buzzkill, the latest in the Pecan Bayou series by Teresa Trent, I snatched it up like a bloodhound on the scent.
Having recently fled the state of Texas in search of balmier climes (i.e. California), I was hesitant to be drawn back into Texan fiction. But since Pecan Bayou doesn’t really exist, I decided to throw caution to the sea breezes and give it a chance.
Even if you haven’t read A Dash of Murder and Overdue for Murder (books one and two in the series), you’ll be able to hop right in. Betsy Livingston, aka “The Happy Hinter,” is about to be married to her meteorologist fiancé, Leo, and nothing is going smoothly. Despite her role as a professional household hints columnist for the local paper, Betsy is totally disorganized about her “simple” wedding – scheduled for February 14 – until a resourceful aunt steps in and hooks her up with a professional wedding planner. The day is saved! Except, not really. Betsy begins to feel even more discombobulated as her wedding planner, Mr. Andre, sends her scurrying from one meeting to another, tasting cakes, selecting reception venues, and even nailing down the minister at the church about a time slot for the big date. She’s scatterbrained, all right, but is she capable of… murder?
When Betsy’s original wedding florist turns up dead after she rejects him in favor of Mr. Andre’s preferred vendor, townsfolk start to buzz about his death by bee-sting. In fact, the florist was using one of Betsy’s own homemade potions (calamine lotion, to be exact), and all signs point to a happy housewife gone mad. But was it Betsy’s recipe that did him in, or the florist’s wife who made it with a group of fellow church ladies?
Could a church-going woman really resort to murder? Or is something more nefarious afoot in little ol’ Pecan Bayou?
With a large cast of characters for such a small town, Buzzkill pokes gentle fun at bridezillas, small town life, and grumpy old men. Toss in a little family drama (Betsy’s long-estranged mother makes her first appearance a month before the wedding, attempting to shanghai it), dueling weddings (Prissy Olin is set to marry the mayor’s son on the same day), some about-to-be-newlywed strife (will Betsy have to leave her beloved Pecan Bayou for big-city Dallas?), and you’ve got one potboiler of a mystery a-bubbling.
While at first I thought I had spotted the murderer on her original appearance, by the end of the book I realized I had fallen prey to a red herring. Well played, Ms. Trent! All of the characters were fun and well-drawn, even as they played on some typical stereotypes like the rampaging bride, gay wedding planner, and nosey newspaperman. The story itself is engaging (who doesn’t love weddings?), and generally well written, despite a couple of small continuity issues (when did Betsy acquire a dog?). I enjoyed the concept of a small-town columnist getting tangled up in mysteries, especially with her father as the head of the town’s police force, and the possibility that this small-town girl would be uprooted for a bigger city with more chances to solve crimes in another location.
And, I have to admit that while I’m still not the biggest fan of Texas, this book does have that southern charm that reeled me into making my home in Austin in the first place. Wildflowers, German food and drink, and a relaxed pace of life? Check.
So who’s behind the dirty deed, and will Betsy’s wedding day be foiled by the prissy Prissy? You’ll have to read Buzzkill yourself to find out....more
Carol Tice is a great writer and, even better, a great researcher. Her book includes tons of case studies that illustrate her tips for building a succCarol Tice is a great writer and, even better, a great researcher. Her book includes tons of case studies that illustrate her tips for building a successful business, which in turn offer aspiring entrepreneurs more ideas on how to bring that success into their own ventures. Whether you're a small business owner in need of some low-cost assistance, or a wannabe bootstrapper, this is an excellent book to help get you started on the road to a well-built business - without all the debt.
Additionally, this is a very 21st century guide, with talk of food trucks, coworking spaces, and other options that have sprung up in the past few years for the enterprising but thrifty "solopreneur" or single-person business owner. Covering a wide variety of industries, the book is geared more towards the beginner searching for a niche, but it's also perfect for those who have figured out their market and need ideas about how to tweak their revenue streams, advertising budgets, or overhead costs in the first few years of business.
Highly recommended for anyone looking to start their own business and achieve their own success....more
Rounding up the wisdom of philosophers, psychologists, students of human nature, and even theoretical physicists, this book offers a brief introductioRounding up the wisdom of philosophers, psychologists, students of human nature, and even theoretical physicists, this book offers a brief introduction to the value of being able to change your own perceptions of the world around you. While I am not the typical target for a self-help book, I found this book to be an interesting and valuable take on the concept that perception is reality.
One of the most important points that the author makes is that no matter what happens in life, you always have the power to choose how you feel about a given situation. It is not words that hurt us, but the way we feel about them - and CHOOSE to feel about them - that gives them that power. Additionally, we have the ability to choose between being right and being happy. Put together, these two premises allow human beings to achieve great things, if only we'll get out of our own way!
I was surprised to learn that most people, including those who are considered successful in life, engage in such a huge amount of negative self-talk on a daily basis. But when you stop to consider it, this makes sense. We are, indeed, bombarded with negative messages from friends, family, coworkers, and society at large. No wonder we are stuck in these negative cycles! But all is not lost, as we can interrupt this feedback and reinterpret it positively. Not to get too hippie-dippy, but that sounds like a great idea. Who wants to deal with a world of cynics when they could instead opt for a world of peace and love?
The best thing about this book is that it's not just a bunch of theories or self-help guru-style mumbo-jumbo. Instead, it offers realistic ways to explore day-to-day situations in which you might find yourself feeling stuck, frustrated or even hopeless. It offers specific exercises and ideas to try, in order to turn those situations around so that you can move forward and succeed in your goals.
Theories are fun, but putting ideas into practice is even better. Schäfer has succeeded in creating a practical self-help book that everyone in need of a positive boost can use. ...more
Ever been to a boring wedding, wishing you could escape the dull chitchat and cut straight to the icing on top of that layer cake? D.C. McMillen's shoEver been to a boring wedding, wishing you could escape the dull chitchat and cut straight to the icing on top of that layer cake? D.C. McMillen's short erotic piece, "The Wedding," skips all the filler and takes you right to the creamy center, with a sex scene that makes both Allan's ex-wife and readers jealous. Enjoy this quick romp on a lazy Sunday, or skip a real wedding for a bit of frothy fun....more
Set in Manchester, England in 1991, The Sound of Loneliness follows desolate narrator Daniel Crabtree from his dreary apartment, to drearier pubs, andSet in Manchester, England in 1991, The Sound of Loneliness follows desolate narrator Daniel Crabtree from his dreary apartment, to drearier pubs, and back again. Although Daniel is ostensibly a writer, he has only completed a single short story thus far, and has dreams of making it big, though little ambition beyond charging his friend “in publishing” with getting someone interested in the story.
Living off his monthly unemployment checks, Daniel begs or borrows (and occasionally steals) everything, from food and drink to the shabby furnishings in his apartment. Too proud to admit to his family that he is a starving artist, he makes up grandiose tales of his success for both his mother and uncle’s benefit. Is he kidding himself, or does he really think that this one story will one day make a name for him?
It’s hard to tell, as Daniel often comes off as delusional, thanks to his overinflated ego. Despite the fact that he occasionally realizes how awful his writing is, he continues to rage against the publishing industry that rejects him, do the bare minimum to receive his monthly welfare checks, and otherwise continue his sad existence.
If this sounds like a tale you’ve heard before, you’re right. The UK apparently has thousands – perhaps millions – of these aspiring author types, living off the government, avoiding an honest day’s work, and seemingly in thrall to the falsehood that suffering and poverty make Great Art. What makes Craig Wallwork’s book different than the dime-a-dozen plot is that the author himself sees through this ruse, and shows his audience what suffering and poverty really bring. To wit: bitterness, hatred, a growling belly, growing insanity, debt, and the inability to change one’s position in life.
Oh, and let’s not forget the alcoholism, for it wouldn’t be a tale of soul-crushing poverty in the UK without the omnipresent pub!
Oddly enough, though I thoroughly detested Daniel Crabtree as a character, I found Wallwork’s book quite engaging. Perhaps it was the dreary day that lent an English air to my reading, requiring a hot cup of tea and a purring cat for accompaniment, but I found myself curious to see where this sad sack (Daniel, that is) would take me. Though Daniel is, indeed, a terrible writer (and would be a terrible human being, were he real), readers might take pleasure in seeing him so thoroughly thwarted by his sorry attempts at publishing. After all, if the cream rises to the top, there will always be the chunks of whey and assorted detritus to sink to the bottom. What of these would-be writers?
They are the Daniel Crabtrees of the world, persistently beating their own heads against the wall, perpetuating the sorry stereotype of the starving artist, who suffers humiliations for his art. And yet here we see that this humiliations are not really for art’s sake at all. They are merely the pride that goeth before the character’s fall. Is it still a tragedy when one’s tragic flaw is the belief that one is actually better than all of the fools he reads about in books?
Though The Sound of Loneliness is truly a portrait of a young man desperate to become an artist who will likely never succeed, and thus a rather dismal view for aspiring authors, it is perhaps a more realistic take on artistic dreams. After all, we cannot all go from rags to riches, à la J.K. Rowling. Some of us will fail. And what then?
To find out what happens to this dream deferred, you’ll have to read The Sound of Loneliness....more