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The Weight of Deeds – “Short Stories That Are Long on Meaning”

October 29, 2012

The Weight of Deeds

by Eli Thorpe

Outskirts Press

265 pages, paperback $16.95

I like short stories. I think they are a deceptively difficult literary form because they often suggest a beginning and an ending beyond the words on the page. The ones I write involve scenes with interaction between characters that each have a different objective. Those of Eli Thorpe start out more like monologues that involve other characters but depend upon the narrator’s going through some transition for their action.

If you identify with the narrator this works. If you don’t… But I did and through the content of the different pieces was allowed to relive my own experiences and draw conclusions from them.

Emily explores “being carried away by love” or I should say the “disappointment of not being carried away by love.” The Tree is life as seen by a boy whose father has died and The Magician explores our dreams versus day-by-day reality. But a standout is Moonlight . It uses the real and imagined in a way that will haunt you for months after finishing the book, and you see the conflicts of other stories that seem second-hand, mirror-like images, directly.

Thorpe’s advice is to only read one story a day. And there is enough to think about that this is a good idea, because not only are short stories challenging for writers, they are demanding of readers. The payoff is they become ours as well as belonging to the storyteller.

Order this directly from Amazon. Click: The Weight of Deeds: A Collection of 14 Short Stories

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