So here I am with another round of my Flash Clash reading challenge. And I’ll begin by conveniently brushing over the fact that there has been a slight delay to the proceedings once more. I wouldn’t mind if I had a valid excuse but I’m racking my brains here trying to think of one. I can’t. So I guess I’m just going to have to put it down to being swept up in the hustle and bustle of everyday, non-bookish life, and we’ll leave it at that. Let’s move on then as I present Day #26 of my fab (to me) flash reading challenge.
Firstly, if you didn’t know already, the reading for this challenge has now dropped down to only three collections. I’ve finished reading the collections of Nik Perring and Etgar Keret and they await in the wings for the others to be read through. They’re gone for now certainly, but they are far from forgotten.
So emerging as today’s victor from the three authors that I’m still reading for this challenge is Alex Burrett once again, with his story, Feeling Myself Part II. As its title would suggest this story is Part II of an earlier story I read back at the start of June. At the time I proclaimed ‘Part I’ to be ‘compelling’. I awarded it a rating of 4 out 5 stars. Part II had a tough act to follow. Guess what? Part II stood up to the challenge magnificently, and it’s emerged as a story that’s even better than it’s ‘partner’.
Feeling Myself Part II takes off from where ‘Part I’ ended, but if I’m being honest then I would say that either story could be read independently. And that’s because Feeling Myself Part II has a plot that very quickly turns into something else, offering a reading experience that’s very much Kafka-esque in its quality. It’s a very, very memorable story and one part in particular is so remarkably profound (it’s the part in the story when Burrett explains and illustrates just how easily a butterfly’s wings can be damaged), that it’s going to stick with me forever. That to me is the mark of a very competent and powerful storyteller.
Anyway, on to the rundown of all of the flash fiction tackled today:
*Keeping in the spirit of flash I’m limiting myself to only giving single-word comments for each story.
**As they are incredibly short in length, David Gaffney’s stories are being ‘ticked off’ two at a time.
*** Dan Rhode’s stories are even shorter than Gaffney’s and to ensure that I finish his collection in time, I have to cover three per day.
Inspired by the publication of Nik Perring’s debut flash fiction collection, the Flash Clash Challenge is a fun contest in which
threefour other experts in the field are compared alongside Nik. You can find out more about it HERE.