Last weeks novel was Vampires in the Lemon Grove: And Other Stories by Karen Russell.
This collection of eight short stories is my first experience with Karen Russell and overall it was a good introduction. The characters are interesting and complex, while the stories are imaginative and surprising.
The stories are wonderfully weird, and Russell’s prose build the fascinating ideas into intriguing and wonderful worlds. They should be as satisfying as they are unique, but there’s one big problem – she doesn’t end the stories. Almost all of them fall into ambiguity, and it is eternally frustrating. It seems to be a problem of short stories collections of late. Ambiguity as intellect.
My favorite story of the collection was Reeling for the Empire, a creepy tale of young girls enslaved in a silk spinning factory where they begin to turn into human silkworms, spinning threads from their own bellies. The only story I really didn’t care for was The Seagull Army Descends on Strong Beach, 1979, I just couldn’t connect with the characters or the premise.
4 out of 5. Entertaining and well written, but a bit frustrating.
What short story collection should I read next? Comment below if you have a suggestion, and follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram via the icons in the sidebar for updates!
That’s all for this Novel Monday! See you Friday for some sweets!