Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Review: “Writing on the Wall” by Vaughan Stanger

June 22nd, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica Inglett
Vaughan Stranger’s Writing on the Wall is a short read that focuses on just two characters and their daily routines. The story is entirely dialogue but still easily shows that the setting is in the future with advanced technology. In fact, the technology is all the two characters talk about, which shows the flaws with society making everything “bigger and better.”

I enjoyed the story. It confirms my belief that we should take some time to see the forest from the trees when creating something new.

Four Stars for “Eavesdropper” by Tim McDaniel

June 21st, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica Inglett
Tim McDaniel’s Eavesdropper was an inspiring story to read. It reminded me of the times when I used to sit on benches and “people watch” for a few minutes. It’s intriguing to hear the few bits of conversation someone beside you having. What is their life like when they go home? Who are they talking to on the phone, and why didn’t they wait until another time to have it?

This story is based around that idea. If we knew the entire lives of the people we saw in passing they wouldn’t be interesting at all. However, when only given select bits of information about them, the possibilities of who they could be are endless, which makes you want to be more like them. It happens to the best of us, which is why I enjoyed the story so much.

Five Stars for “Throwing Birds at the Sky”

June 5th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica Inglett
Throwing Birds at the Sky by Leon J. West is a truly captivating story. The plot is centered around the concept of interoperation as well as human nature. Throwing Birds at the Sky isn’t a happy story, or even one filled with a hopeful ending but its message sat with me after I finished reading it. The story shows the ugly truth of just how much humanity is based on the blind leading the blind.

I would recommend it in a heartbeat to anyone considering it, and I know it will be in the next anthology I create.

5 Stars for “Scales” by Samantha Henderson

April 26th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica Lianne Inglett
Scales, by Samantha Henderson is one of the best told stories I’ve read on Anthology Builder. The concept itself didn’t intrigue me so much, but the delivery was beautiful. The plot had a very “backwoods” ambiance where the people had to deal with monsters every day near the river.

I like that the main character’s voice is very direct, more like a thought process than a narration. While the ending was unexpected, I loved it too, so I would recommend this to anyone in a heartbeat.

Four Stars for “A Hot Cup at the Last Station” by Michael Merriam

April 26th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica Inglett
A Hot Cup At the Last Station by Michael Merriam is simply about hope. The main character has lost all of it, but an older man near him refuses to give it up. Hope defines how happy we are in life by how long we choose to keep our own expectations alive. This story proves that living isn’t always dependant on what happens, but the anticipation of what’s going to happen, and for that, I loved it.

It’s a simple story, but a great one. I enjoyed it very much.

New Review: “Lucifer Falling” by Julian Flood

April 26th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Erica Lianne Inglett
Lucifer Falling by Julian Flood starts with a shady ambiance. Every character in the story has their demons- more than most people- but I found it very easy to relate to all of them. The well-known main character’s luck is increased when he wins big at a casino early one morning, which was the last thing he needed.

The author doesn’t give all the information upfront, so when it’s explained it changes story’s mood entirely, and by the end everything feels different. I found that Lucifer Falling was a very unique story with an ironically casual perspective and I would recommend it to my friends anytime.

New Review: Silent Blade by Leah Cypress

February 6th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica L. Davis
“Silent Blade” by Leah Cypess is a perfect example of an inner turmoil story. The main character-a young girl- has more courage than someone at her age should have. She thinks and acts like an adult, and when it comes to her older brother, makes adult decisions as well. The situation becomes tense when she sees him stranding over their parents’ bed as they sleep, contemplating what to do with them.

The story surprised me. It took an unexpected turn at the end that I really liked. It’s hard to fit much detail into such a short story, but it was a great way to keep mystery in the plot.

Four Stars for “Making Up with Betty Crocker” by Jacinta Butterworth

January 18th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Stephen Cashmore

Making up with Betty Crocker is a sharply observed little story. Its style is to use short sentences fused together by a growing pattern of what it is like to be a mother in the United Sates, a mother obsessed with looking good and constantly under peer pressure. Some of the observations are spot on, and the author is good at pinpointing where people skirt around issues, talking trivia instead of about the more important underlying situation.

I quite enjoyed the story, though in a sense I feel it is a victim of its own message, in that I wanted to know a bit more about the main characters and what drove them to do the things they do or say the things they say, but the whole point of the story is that none of that information is available. The deliberate staccato style and slightly offbeat conversations work well, and a surprisingly vivid picture of the main character forms as we see how she thinks and how she reacts to the pressures in her life.

Perhaps the only criticism I would make is that the story is clearly set in America, and uses several American phrases and even mentions Oprah (which might not mean much to a worldwide audience, and also might eventually date the story). But overall I recommend it, and if you are compiling a fairly generalist anthology, you won’t go far wrong with Making up with Betty Crocker.

New Review: “Making Up with Betty Crocker” by Jacinta Butterworth

January 16th, 2012 by Nancy Fulda

reviewed by Erica L. Davis
Making Up With Betty Crocker is written by Jacinta Butterworth. As I was reading her story about the life of a typical American family, I interoperated it as being about priorities. I felt like it was trying to convey that people control their lives according to what they value the most. Some people focus on day-to-day tasks, while others like to look at the larger picture.

This is more of a day-to-day story. It’s told through short sentences that easily flow together, a bare bones way to read a story that I thought was very refreshing. I’m glad I read it, and would recommend it for a short read.

Four Stars for “City of Games” by Daniel Ausema

December 29th, 2011 by Nancy Fulda

Reviewed by Erica L. Davis
City of Games, by Daniel Ausema has a beautiful voice to it. The story is based around the double meaning of the word “games” that focuses on the difference between truth and lies. The question I got from reading it was “At what point does it stop mattering whether something is fact or fiction?”

The main character doesn’t have a name, but neither do any of the other characters, which I believe adds to the great ambiance of the story. It’s a very poetic piece that has a lot mystery to the plot, and I would recommend it to everyone.