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Artefacts and Other Stories

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4.27  ·  Rating details ·  15 ratings  ·  9 reviews
That dandelion. A flash of stubborn yellow in a dark box of space. It had promised sunshine but had tasted sour.

Artefacts.

A dandelion. A mayfly. A family, bereft.

Items and mementos of a life, lived hard and with love, or long, empty, bitter.

In these sharply drawn and unflinching short stories, Rebecca Burns unpicks the connection between the lives we live and what we leave
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Paperback, 156 pages
Published September 30th 2017 by Odyssey Books
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4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  15 ratings  ·  9 reviews


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Penny (Literary Hoarders)
A great collection of short stories! “Greatcoat” remains my favourite - it is an excellent and powerful short story.

I read these slowly over the past couple of months. Thank you to the author for sending!
David Harris
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm grateful to the author for a review e-copy of this book.

Having previously enjoyed Burns' collection The Settling Earth I was keen to read more of her stories and wasn't disappointed. The seventeen here are all, in their different ways, treats. There are stories that find hope in bleak times; stories that leap time, joining moments across the decades through the recollection of a dandelion, a display of hats in a museum, or the gathering of a family after a death.

Many of them come at their po
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Deb
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is the third collection of stories by author Rebecca Burns, after Catching the Barramundi and The Settling Earth. Like The Settling Earth, these are short glimpses into interesting characters and situations, each one leaving the reader wanting more. Unlike The Settling Earth, the stories take place across a range of times and locations. A number of the stories are connected in some way to the two World Wars. Some of the stories look at everyday life and others explore serious trauma, and ma ...more
Isobel Blackthorn
Oct 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The short story form is hard to master. There are many strictures and the word length alone demands taut and pointed prose. Few can manage the heights of Alice Munro. The reader waits for that release of breath as the author provides an astute observation or an elegant and original turn of phrase. Which is why, when I read this latest offering from Rebecca Burns, my mind was switched to critical.

Yet from the first, Burns satisfies the aspirations of the short-story reader, with sublime writing a
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Saarah Niña
Short Story Collection

In this collection, Rebecca Burns captures special moments of closeness and intensity. But also the small moments in the dull and silent chaos of the ordinary. These stories hold meaning; some more than others. As mere readers, we will not always fully appreciate the context of some of the short stories included. This is mostly because Burns remarkably pulls you into what seems a brief chapter of a 'greater story'. I suppose, in a sense, just one moment in 'a life lived'.
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Marilyn Boyle-Taylor
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Overall, Artefacts and Other Stories is an uneven but worthwhile read. Artefacts… improves with a second reading, as some of the themes are repeated and underscored. The idea of artefacts leading the themes in the stories is intriguing but sometimes, heavy-handedly done, as in” A Gathering of Relics” and “The Bread Princess.” The title story, “Artefacts,” almost makes it, and “Mayflies of Apollo” works well. The directness of “Tide” rings true., but often the artefacts’ meaning is confusing, as ...more
Mawson Bear
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
With skill and economy, Rebecca Burns allows us to slip into moments in the lives of her characters when the meaning and emotion of their struggles up to that point seems to compress. Memories overwhelm. New choices perhaps appear.

That compression of time can be triggered by an item, an artefact; perhaps a greatcoat, a letter, a bootie. Bits and scraps. Moments. Glimpses.

In The Bread Princess, we discover that an array of bonnets can give us impressions of the changing attitudes in a small com
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Clarissa
Feb 21, 2018 rated it liked it
This short book of short stories was engaging at times - interesting snippets giving your a glance at times past. Some of the stories did leave you curious about what happened after the last page. I would recommend to someone with a free afternoon but at times my attention wandered away.
Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)
I have read only a few short story collections, so I don't have a ton to base these off of, but every time I read a new one it makes me want to challenge myself to read more and more!

This collection didn't seem to have a central theme. After reading the collection I realized that I like collections more when they have a central theme that the stories circle around, they felt disjointed and happenstance.

Don't get me wrong - I loved the stories. Some more than others, but I just like it when they
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Rebecca Burns is an award-winning short story writer and novelist. Her short story collections - Catching the Barramundi and The Settling Earth - were both longlisted for the prestigious Edge Hill Short Story Award, the UK's only prize for short story collections.

She was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2011, winner of the Fowey Festival of Words and Music Short Story Competition in 2013 (and ru
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