‘Lille herself avoided mirrors. They startled her with their frankness: her white froth skin, her too green eyes, sea thrift lips, and hair which shifted and tumbled like the yellow dunes.’ (Runner up in Graffiti Magazine 25th anniversary short story competition 2020)
'Provisioned with nectar of orange cordial, and slices of the softest bread filled with white and gold fragments of egg and carried in elf-made baskets of satiny tupperware, hunger could not call us away for hours at a time.’ (Winner of the Ottery St Mary adult section writing competition 2020)
Cheryl Burman is an award winning writer of short stories, flash fiction and novels. Here she has gathered a collection with fairytale, myth or fairytale-like themes of varying length and gravity. A short read.
Cheryl Burman lives in the Forest of Dean, UK, a place which has inspired the likes of Tolkien and Rowling. She’s the author of three novels for grownups, and a trilogy and its prequel for youngsters (although Mum, Dad and the grans love them too). Her flash fiction and short stories have won various awards and some of these are included in her collection, Dragon Gift. Cheryl is the chair of Dean Writers Circle and a founder of Dean Scribblers, which encourages creative writing among young people in her community.
This book is a treasure. Ten pots of gold. Some of these tales are now a collection of my favorites. I almost want to name my top three, but then a little nudge from another lingers and makes me smile. Such a nice variety of literary and light stories with mythical themes, legendary roots, and fairytale melodies.
Another pleasant collection of short stories, this one tied together with a common symbol and creature of fantasy: dragons.
Each story stands on its own but feels complete and well paced. I enjoyed seeing the different types of situations and circumstances using dragons and it covered a lot of different sub genres which is always a treat to see.
Much like with any short story collection, there are weaker stories to the collection. But I found there were much more strong stories than there were weak. So if you come across one you felt was a bit subpar, keep reading, there are better ones to come.
I’m glad I checked this collection out. Short stories with a theme are always a pleasure and when the author incorporates multiple genres and a wide variety of circumstances, it makes it all the better. Definitely add it to your TBR list. It’s more than worth a little bit of your time.
I found this collection by Cheryl But man to be interesting in its diversity. Although, some of the stories would fit in with The Brothers Grimm, others had a historical flair. I found all to be very enjoyable. I highly recommend them.
From retells of old favorites to the author's own wonderfully written tales, you'll be swept away by the amazing imagery, the surprising plot twists, and the enchanting (yet often wicked) characters. Dragon Gift is a quick read yet a delightful way to spend a bit of time escaping into other worlds while being reminded of a few life lessons along the way. This is a lovely collection of magical, mystical short stories that will enchant you from the first page to the last.
In this series of shorts, Cheryl Burman makes her mark with stories that touch on the whimsical and haunting, the heartwarming and gut-wrenching. Each story has a sense of magic, whether the magic of the mundane or the fantastical.
The prose itself is clever, carefully crafted description that stands out from the normal cliches and turns of phrase. There are familiar references to fairy tales with unique twists and turns; myth and tales re-written for modern sensibilities; contemporary stories with magical flair; and a story about a historical tragedy that made my heart sink. Though DRAGON GIFT covers a large swath of content and genres, each story fits the whole.
My favorites were ORCHARD KINGDOM and A VOICE ROSIE TRUSTS. Both had different flavors, but they left an impression. I won't spoil for either of them, but they made me feel something deep in my soul.
I'm interested to read what other wonders Burman has in store for us in the future.
I’ve just finished reading Dragon Gift: Ten Short Stories. What a delight! Burman embeds a trace of magic into each story. The author’s voice is clearly discernible in all ten, as she brings to us tales of dragons, mermaids, rivers that whisper. Familiar stories from our childhood are turned on their ears as Burman weaves spells, creating stories with new, different, and sometimes dark takes. My favorite three were Sabrina Rising, A voice Rosie trusts, and The Stepmother. Each pulled at my heartstrings. A mother’s love for her child, the love of an owner for her dog, and a surprising twist of unexpected selflessness. Well worth the time spent to read. Can’t wait to see what comes next from this author.
Cheryl Burman captivates with ten short stories reminiscent of the Brothers Grimm’s technique of storytelling. These stories don’t always have happy endings, but the fun is in the reading and anticipation of how the stories will unfold.
With a mix of Grimm and Disney fairy tales, Burman spins modern versions of some familiar stories. Plus she adds her own imaginative stories that rival the tales of old. One story that I loved was about her childhood of playing with her friends inside an almond orchard. With lines like this: “On hot summer mornings we escaped the dullard wizards (I assume fathers) and witches (and mothers) who would confine us to our weatherboard prisons,” you can see the enchantment that Burman casts through the eyes of a child.
I was given a copy of Dragon’s Gift and freely give this review and recommendation to read this unique compilation of short stories.
A collection of past and future award winning short stories from one of my favourite authors (it's a short list). Cheryl Burman is indeed a master storyteller, painting images that transport you into the worlds that exist in her fertile imagination. This is a varied collection with a mix of serious stories which tug at your emotions and light hearted ones. Some have familiar characters but all are presented in the authors unique fashion. If you are a writer you can learn a lot from Cheryl Burman. If you are a reader, just sit back and relax and let her do what she does best - tell you a story - in this case 10. Consider yourself thoroughly spoilt.
I loved this mix of magical, enchanting short stories!
Some are not just a retelling of well-known fairy tales but a retelling with a twist that makes the story fresh and new. The Stepmother has an ending that makes you think. Cindy and the Beastly Prince is a mix of many well-loved fairy tales that managed to surprise me with a satisfying twist-ending.
Then you have the gentle pathos of A Voice that Rosie Trusts and the beauty of The Moon's Silver Path.
All in all a short but well-written set of stories - read one at a time when you have a few minutes to spare or devour them all at once. Enjoy!
Dragon Gift is one book I shall keep on my shelf to be read over and over. Ms. Burman's writing is so detailed I felt the angst, or joy, even the rising waters around my body as I read each individual story. I continued to return to the first story 3 times to reread it, as I was so fascinated by her imagination. As a lover of short stories, I am totally sold on this author and am willing to try a complete novel next. Excellent work.