Saturday, June 16, 2012

Review of "Four Household Tales" by Poor Mojo's Giant Squid

I have been reading Household Tales by the Brother's Grimm, having read several stories from this source only this morning.  So, when I came upon "Four Household Tales" while perusing on-line back issues of Shimmer magazine in my search for a good market for my short story "Jonathan and Margaret," I paused and read.  The four very short stories are told from the POV of a giant squid.  They may be found at:  http://www.shimmerzine.com/four-household-tales/.

The first story, "A Master and Student on the Muddy Road," has the squid and his apprentice, Abraham Lincoln, come upon a damsel in distress.  The author's style is formal, matter-of-fact, and sprinkled with dark humor.  It goes along at first as though a brother Grimm were narrating, then suddenly the POV of the squid hits the reader in the face with inky horror.  Needless to say, I loved the story, so I moved on to the next one...

The second story, "Three Travelers upon the Ship Titanic," again features the squid and two companions--a doctor and a lawyer.  The ship crashes into an ice "burgh."  At first I thought a typo had somehow gotten past the editors.  I was wrong.  Well, Poor Mojo was two for two, so on to the next one...

The third story, "An Actual Occurrence in the City of Las Vegas," has the squid get drunk and hook up with a floozy.  Dark hilarity ensues.  I mean, how does the author come up with this stuff?  OK, three for three--on to the finale...

The fourth and, sadly, final story, "The Babysitter," narrated by the squid, begins in the manner of a cliche B-movie slasher film where the babysitter, alone in the house with her charges, receives increasingly threatening phone calls.  This story, as with all stories of this ilk, always end with, "Run!  The calls are coming from inside the house!"  So, I do not feel bad about giving away the ending.  The manner of speech of the squid, analogous to that of Saphira in The Inheritance Cycle (Eragon) books, makes this take on the old theme unique, memorable, and (above all) entertaining.  I hope to see more by this architeuthic storyteller.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the kind review!

    If you'd like to read more of our giant squid tales, we have ten years worth published at our online literary magazine. Totally free. Often very odd.

    The link is: http://www.poormojo.org/cgi-bin/gennie.pl?Squid

    Thanks again,
    Morgan Johnson

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