Mini Review: Enchantment by Thaisa Frank

This book was sent to me by Heidenkind/Tasha from Truth Beauty Freedom and Books blog – thank you very much!

My impressions

It is a collection of short stories. Their common themes seem to oscillate around alternate reality, magic, death, love in its many variations and a sense of belonging (or not belonging.) It would be really difficult to summarize all the stories here: some of them are very short (like two-three pages) some of them a bit longer and more substantial. Among the characters you can meet a vampire who tries to belong where he lives (“The Loneliness of the Midwestern Vampire”) a circus performer with feet that can “see” (“The Girl With Feet That Could See”) and the physicist Erwin Schrodinger (“Schrödinger in Exile”). These extraordinary characters often deal with quite ordinary problems, encountering profound mysteries where ordinary people see just daily drudgery.

My favourite stories were “Poland” about a poem which could change reality around you, “The Cat Lover” about cats and skin-changing abilities and the title story, “Enchantment” in which a lonely (but not living alone) woman orders a tiny enchanted man called Lars from the Wondrous Traveler website, falls in love with him, and then she has to choose between him and her husband.

Overall it was a nice collection – I liked the writing style of Ms Frank and the fact that her stories were enchanted without sounding spurious and humorous without being silly.

Reading short novellas seems to be similar to traveling by train – the landscape outside changes very quickly and even if you see something really interesting you can hardly stop and admire it for a longer period of time – there is a schedule to be followed and the next picture is waiting right at the corner. Alternatively if you see something not interesting it passes in no time. Still I prefer something more substantial like novels and I don’t like trains very much.

Final verdict:

If you like short stories with supernatural elements and magical reality permeating ordinary life this book might fit your bill. I liked most of them but still some seemed too short to me. Which is a compliment of a kind.

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