WELCOME TO DECEMBER PROJECT!
this explanation/intro will be posted before each day’s short story. scroll down to get to the story-review.
this is the FOURTH year of me doing a short story advent calendar as my december project. for those of you new to me or this endeavor, here’s the skinny: every day in december, i will be reading a short story that is 1) available free somewhere on internet, and 2) listed on goodreads as its own discrete entity. there will be links provided for those of you who like to read (or listen to) short stories for free, and also for those of you who have wildly overestimated how many books you can read in a year and are freaking out about not meeting your 2019 reading-challenge goals. i have been gathering links all year when tasty little tales have popped into my feed, but i will also accept additional suggestions, as long as they meet my aforementioned 1), 2) standards.
if you scroll to the end of the reviews linked here, you will find links to all the previous years’ stories, which means NINETY-THREE FREEBIES FOR YOU!
reviews of these will vary in length/quality depending on my available time/brain power.
so, let’s begin
The hotel was expensive and looked out over a park, and it occurred to him for the thousandth time that if he hadn’t spent time on Earth, he might not know the difference.
someone needs to give emily st. john mandel a Black Mirror episode. hers might be light on the tech side of things, but she would handle the human complexities brilliantly—so many wrinkles to create and explore!
i just read her upcoming The Glass Hotel, and this feels like it could have been a little off-tendril of that. i have never read a short story by her before (that i remember), but what’s wonderful about her novels are their breadth and scope and connectivity; how little bits of their separate storylines trickle into each other, and how characters and situations cross books to snake their way into entirely different narratives.
this is too short for any of that to occur, of course, but her writing has such lovely flow and beautiful lines, and she manages to make you care about and know character in such a short space of time, which is rare and wonderful gift, and the fact that it could easily be slipped into another of her books points to a consistency of quality and tone that is an asset, not a hobgoblin.
it may not be the most unpredictable story of all time, but that doesn’t make it any less entertaining, and i am excited to just now be learning about the project for which this story was commissioned—Future Tense Fiction, because it seems it will be a wonderful hunting ground come next december short story advent calendar time, and can be supported until then by buying this anthology Future Tense Fiction: Stories of Tomorrow; which had already caught my eye without knowing anything about it! so, BOOM!
THAT WAS DAY THIRTEEN IT IS FRIDAY THE THIRTEENTH!
read it for yourself here: