Bed Time Stories for Grown Ups by Cearúil Swords
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Bed Time Stories for Grown Ups is such an interesting collection of short stories. From a woman who gets a day off from her job in the dungeon with an ogre and a troll, to a man whose fears of the impossible consume his life, these stories range from downright hilarious (in that wacky, absurdist style reminiscent of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) to meaningful and touching.
My favorite story was definitely The Woman Who Needed to Sit. It’s told using all of about 3 sentences, though one runs on so long, it quite accurately conveys the hectic life of a busy mom, while still remaining perfectly readable.
Each story begins with “Once upon a time,” and ends with “And they all lived happily ever after,” lending a fairytale feel. I love how the author takes the most mundane of ideas (a man who is running late and needs to tie his shoes, a woman whose parent’s fear she doesn’t have a good head on her shoulders), and gives it a fantasy twist (the shoes refuse to let him move, the woman takes her head off and tries on some others).
I’m not sure about the sample in the back, though. It rambled on in the most curious way, and I couldn’t tell you what that story will be about. Don’t blink. You might miss something. Though in his defense, the author did say that “Its process of construction resembled sending vowels and consonants downstream towards a waterfall and making a story out of the words formed by the letters that cling desperately to one another and to the driftwood as they fast approach the drop.”
So I can’t vouch for the end excerpt, but the rest of Bed Time Stories for Grown Ups is fantastic. And you don’t even have to be a grown up to enjoy it.
And don’t you just love the author’s name?
*I’m happy to say, this imaginative collection is quite clean.