Happy New Year!
I’m finally back in Spain, and while I’m still running well behind on my schedule as I try to get back into my daily rhythm, I’m pleased to say it did not affect the quality of this issue. And so, it is with much pleasure that I present three excellent, quite different, and quite entertaining stories.
First, we have Alice Benson’s sharp, unexpected “Conversations.” There’s a credibility and humanity to this piece that is undeniable. It doesn’t hurt that the author has a fantastic hand at dialogue. And in the end, Benson refuses easy caricature, preferring instead to give us a kind of truth. You’ll remember this one.
Second, we have the entertaining and irresistible “Sober World,” by Mickey J. Corrigan. There’s a hard cynicism in the narrator’s voice, but Corrigan does so well with this voice that you must keep reading. And by the end, you just aren’t sure where you stand. The ending (the actual ending) should divide opinion. I mean, I have two opinions on it myself.
And finally, Jennifer Benningfield gives us the amusing, pitch-perfect “Beach Buddy.” There were a few times when I read this that I laughed out loud. The main character is hilarious, believable, and easy to spend an afternoon with. The author manages to pick just the right details to draw the scenes, and by the end, you’ll probably be in the mood for a trip to the beach.
But it’s too cold outside, I’m guessing. So instead, grab a blanket and a hot tea–I’ve been partial to hibiscus lately–and settle in with this month’s B&C.
Daniel R. Julian