[ENG] "Selected Short Stories" by Ann Somerville

★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

Selected Short Stories
Ann Somerville
Ebook, aprox. 90 pages

A collection of gay themed short stories ranging from the sad to the whimsical, serving as a wonderful introduction to Ann Somerville's writing. Erotic, naughty, or sweet, there will be something here to delight and amuse almost any reader who loves Somerville's work, or who enjoys good prose, strong characters, and stories just a little out of the ordinary.

Contains two stories with BDSM themes.

I know I keep telling this story, but earlier this year I got addicted to this Android game, Nun Attack: Run & Gun, and I needed diamonds to upgrade my Nuns. Fortunately, I noticed I could get a whole bunch of diamonds if only I spent 3€ in the Kobo Store... and this happened.

“This” is a book composed of six gay-themed short stories by Ann Somerville, one of them impossibly longer than the others – but that’s kind of the rule for collections, isn’t? Anyway. Having read The Surrogate, I kind of knew what to expect from Somerville, and I wasn’t disappointed (though I can’t say I was surprised, either). The autor’s writing style is simple and adequate to the stories she’s telling – straightforward in the more traditional stories (the first two and the last, where boy meets boy and physical contact ensues), and a little more elaborate in the others (Autumn Rains is very conceptual, Fire, Fire is almost a character study, and Going Away has a little something whimsical to it, as well).

The first two stories, Time Out and the shockingly named Tom and Sean (really? character names as title? and they’re not even special names or anything? I don’t know why but it’s kind of jarring), include BDSM, and I like how the author took the time to deal with safewords and aftercare and sub space. I mean, I read Fifty Shades Of Grey, it’s good to know there are writers out there doing it a little bit better than E.L. James.

The final story, The Gift of Giving is probably the one I remember the best, though I considered it a little... too convenient? It’s hard to explain. Conveniently reassuring, maybe. I've seen reviewers say it's an important story because it understands that love and sex are different things, and that may be true... but how much is that worth if you just know there's going to be sex eventually? It's like saying "hey I know the cookie and the cream and different things, but take the cookie now and stick around, I'll add the rest later". You're still getting both, with the added implication that you're just buying time with the first until you get the second. I don't know how I feel about that.

Conclusion: I didn’t realy have any favorites, mostly because none of the stories really struck me as special. It’s a small book, I read it in one swift session, and that’s all there is to it – there’s something to be said for somewhat well-written BDSM, but besides that, hey, take it or leave it.

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