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The Little Dog and Other Stories (The Red Grouse Tales)
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Leslie Garland | 91 comments Dear Reviewers,
I am wondering if you, would like to review a book of mine?
"The Red Grouse Tales" is comprised of four intriguing novella length contemporary stories, which contain mystery, a hint of the supernatural or paranormal, together with a passing nod towards philosophy and religion – something like; C S Lewis meets Jostein Gaarder and Henry James? - though comparisons are hard to make.
Whereas these tales contain fantastic elements, they are not what are generally regarded as main-stream fantasy - in these stories the fantastic happens in relatively ordinary, everyday circumstances! - and likewise, although they contain philosophy and religion they are not purely about these either. And most importantly, all have an element of mystery to keep the reader wanting to turn the page and think about what they are reading! Yes, they are speculative fiction, but ….?
To date I have had some very nice reviews, both for the individual stories and the collection ("The Red Grouse Tales"), all of which can be found on, and
The blurb:-
The four tales are:-
The Little Dog - a story of good and evil, and retribution.
The Little Dog
Is told by Bill, a retired forester, and takes the form of most of the stories in our lives, namely, that we have no idea that we are living a story until later when previous events suddenly seem to fall into place and make some kind of sense. Bill recounts a week in his early working life when, paired with an older, unsavoury and unpopular colleague, they find a little dog sitting beside the forest haul-road way out in a remote part of the forest. What is the little dog doing there? As the week progresses Bill finds himself becoming emotionally attached to it while also becoming increasingly concerned about just who is his objectionable workmate, and when he notices that the little dog is no longer present at its usual spot his concerns heighten, as he cannot help but feel that his workmate has something to do with the dog's disappearance. Although a troubled Bill has a conversation with his local priest and learns of the nature of sin and evil, he remains blind to that which is right in front of him. However the very next day events suddenly take an unexpected turn and the young naive Bill starts to learn some awful truths.
The Crow - a poignant tale of misunderstanding, dying, blame and bitterness.
The Crow
This story, which centres on our almost desperate desire to leave something to mark our lives upon this earth, is told as a history recounted by Dave, of the time when he, as a child, was taken by his mother to a hospice where he met a dying and embittered old Irish priest known as Mad Father Patrick, who told him about the school days and subsequent rise of a local councillor, Reginald Monday, and of his (Monday's) involvement in the construction of a dam which flooded a valley. Father Patrick's increasingly mad tale is told with a blend of biblical quotations, philosophical musings and wild fantasy, but how does it end and just why is he so bitter?
The Golden Tup - a dreadful tale of paradise being cruelly taken by latent evil.
The Golden Tup
Can evil be in a place? The tale opens with Verity, a farmer's wife, recalling how a young couple were arrested a few years previously for killing their new born baby. How could such a nice young couple have done such a dreadful thing? Through a series of flashbacks we learn how they had created their rural idyll, how an enigmatic man had come into their lives and how their idyll and relationship had gradually fallen apart - how, with references to Milton's Paradise Lost, their paradise was lost. Gradually the young wife reveals a dreadful past, but Verity realises that she is holding something back, but what? What is the terrible truth that caused her and her husband to kill their baby?
The White Hart - a happy ghost story, if there can be such a thing!
The White Hart
Told by a likeable male chauvinist, bachelor and keen fell-runner, Pete Montague recalls three strange incidents which he initially thought were unconnected. The first is his encounter with a little albino deer which he found in the forest when he was out for a jog. The second is that of a chance meeting with a beautiful, young but somewhat enigmatic girl in a remote chapel, and of their conversation in which she told him of the tragic story of the daughter of the family which built it. And the third incident …...
I usually say my stories are for adult readers because they do contain occasional references to sex, sometimes a tiny bit of bad language, are not “all action” from page 1 and are for those who like to think about what they are reading. However, they ought to be suitable for NA and quite possibly YA as well.
“The Red Grouse Tales” can be found on:- link is:- link is:-
You can find me on:-
The tales are written in UK English
Page count 358.
I strongly recommend you have a little dig round my website where you can find:- a) the opening chapter to each tale and b) background info which I hope might add some colour to the read. I also strongly suggest that you have a look at some of the reviews on both goodreads , and so as to get a flavour of the tales.
Timetable; I am guessing you have a TBR list, so would,say, two and half months be long enough? I am wanting to get some advertising organised and would like to get your review in before then.
If “The Red Grouse Tales” sound interesting to you, please get back to me and I'll arrange a PDF or mobi file for you.
Yours sincerely,
Leslie Garland

message 2: by Brian (new)

Brian Gates | 17 comments I'm interested in reading it. Send me an email at and we can talk more.

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