Lindsey Goddard's Reviews > The Box: Uncanny Stories

The Box by Richard Matheson
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it was amazing

This is one of the best short story collections I’ve ever read. That’s not to say that every story is a home run. There were a few misses. But even the stories that failed to strike a chord with me did not fall completely flat. Each had its own charm and intrigue.

I don’t have much negative feedback to offer, so I’ll elaborate on the stories I really enjoyed. My favorites were:

“Button, Button”: A couple is offered an opportunity to earn fifty thousand dollars, and all they have to do is press a button. The catch? The button, once pushed, will cause the death of a random person. This idea really pulled me in, and the main character’s struggle with her own morality held me captive. A great story.

“Girl of My Dreams”: A criminal uses his girlfriend’s psychic abilities for bad instead of good. This story is told from the viewpoint of a violent psychopath who only looks out for “number one”, as they say. A truly chilling piece.

“Dying Room Only”: What struck me about this story is that it could happen to any of us, any time, on any average day. What would you do if a loved one suddenly disappeared? How far would you go to find them? Emotionally charged storytelling here.

“A Flourish of Strumpets”: Oh wow. This story “goes there”, exploring the idea of door-to-door sex workers. An unsettling plot with a hidden dose of humor. Loved it.

“Mute”: This is the longest story in the book. I couldn’t tell you if it was closer to novelette or novella length. I was too busy enjoying it. An orphaned little boy has never spoken a word and is thrust into a society desperate to make him speak. But what if his lack of verbal language is a rare treasure, more beautiful than anyone can ever imagine? What will happen when they finally break him into breaking his silence? Lovely bit of fiction, this one.

“Clothes Make The Man”: I thought this was so peculiar and interesting. A man cannot function without his magical suit. The ending will make you gasp!

“‘Tis the Season To Be Jelly”: In post-apocalyptic America, radioactivity is destroying the human race. People lose body parts left and right, but their hearts can still fall in love. I liked this one simply because it was so unusual.

Overall, a nice collection of stories from a world-renowned author. And I must add… If you are a writer in need of story ideas, this collection will get your brain wheels spinning. Richard Matheson is truly a master at thinking outside “The Box”.

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Reading Progress

January 8, 2017 – Started Reading
January 8, 2017 – Shelved
January 13, 2017 – Finished Reading

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