4 out of 4 stars
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Illustrated Short Fiction of William H. Coles: 2000-2016 is a collection of short stories, a novella and two graphically illustrated books. The book is written by William H. Coles. The settings of the stories are spread out, both in time and locations. The themes too vary with the stories, though there are themes that have been been repeated in a number of stories. They range from child trafficking to infidelity.
The book opens with a story called 'The Gift'. It's a story about teenage pregnancy and abortion. Agnes was distraught because of her teenage daughter's pregnancy. She resorted to making her have an abortion. Therefore, she took her to the family's gynecologist to have him perform an abortion on Catherine. The doctor refuses, as he held the opinion that all life is precious. But Agnes is stubborn, and is determined to maintain the family's image by all costs. Will she succeed?
'Speaking of the dead' is a story of one man John Hampton, who had to undergo the harrowing experience of burrying a wife who had left him for her boss. This is a story that is classical of William H. Coles, as he loves writing on matters love and betrayal. 'Homunculus' is a story set in medieval Europe. It is a tale that tells of a female dwarf known as Didi, who fell hard in love with a famous actor called Lazlo. I held my breath reading this story, because I smelled disaster especially when she expressed her feelings to him. Will Lazlo put her off kindly or, will he take advantage of her and later make fun of her? 'Dr. Greiner's Day in Court' is a story about a man who has been accused of killing his wife, leaving behind two children. On this particular day, his sister-in-law and his two children, head to the court optimistic that he will be released on bail. Will their wish come true? The novella in the book is called 'Sister Carrie'. It tells the story of a seventeen-year-old girl who falls for a stranger on the internet. Carrie claims that she and Zamel love each other so much, yet they barely know each other. Zamel is a male student who is in the USA on student visa. But that is not all there is to him. He is from Iran and the FBI are investigating him, as he is believed to be connected with people who are planning to bomb the USA. These and other many short stories fill up the pages of the book.
The book has a total of thirty four short stories, two graphic novel illustrations and one novella. The themes that arise from the book include: teenage pregnancy, child trafficking, love and romance, betrayal and infidelity, flawed justice systems as well as rogue religious leaders. The beauty of short stories is that they are pithy, thus the themes are very much out there.
The language used to narrate the stories is simple, but beautified with a vast vocabulary. The choice of words plus the phrasing of sentences, made the stories a delight to read. I loved how the author was very relatable in the stories, as the issues tackled were very much contemporary. That is very much like William H. Coles. There is no aspect of the book I disliked. I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars. The editing was top notch. The typesetting too was impeccable. I recommend the book to lovers of short stories and graphically illustrated stories.
Illustrated Short Fiction of William H. Coles: 2000-2016
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