Mephisto Disco - by Simon Paul Wilson
This collection is the first writing I have read from Simon, which is hard to believe because both Baggage and See you when the world ends are on my kindle, patiently waiting for me to read them. What can I say? It’s my own fault. My bad, Simon.
Mephisto Disco has 13 (? I think) short stories comprising its whole, each story differing enough from the others that one gets a feel of the breadth of storytelling available here.
Starting off with probably my second favorite of the shorts, “The Nothing Tree”, Wilson lures the reader in with a fantastic premise, a hint of oriental culture, a nasty turnaround, and a messy ending. Messy as in – not a nice ending. You aren’t going to be going home with a feel-good about the world flush at the end of the book. Nope. Wilson lets you know right up front that here, there are probably no nice endings. Only pain. I think the summary at the end of this was down to nerves, not required, but perhaps for some the closure that was needed.
The short “Watching” was probably my favorite, I got the “twist” fairly early on, just probably the way my mind works or that I write a lot about that genre, but the wording was sublime. It felt more like a piece of poetry than a short, something Shane Douglas Keene (for whom I have the deepest admiration, a poet that made me want to try to read poetry) might have penned. Poetically beautiful enough to stand out as a gem, and the fact it was my highlight of this collection speaks volumes.
As with all collections, some stories resounded with me more than others, the humor of “Chaos Division” didn’t land as planned, but that is down to having grown up with an ADHD order-obsessed mother, spoons in the fork draw was just too close to home for me to see the humor – nothing the author could have done about that one. Again, I get it, I think other people will have a blast.
I have to give credit to the excellent cover art, this time from Matt Wildasin, (link to Twitter here) it made me want to bump this up on my TBR list, really good work. Like – phenomenal work, I do love me some comic-art styled covers.
This is a collection that is going to satisfy. It’s short – it feels like it was over before it really got going, but the stories would make me want to get more from Simon, so I guess I’ll be bumping the two other books higher up my TBR mountain.
I’m giving this a 4 out of 5 ⭐ ‘s, this served as a great intro to Simon’s work. Simon, I will be reading you again, soon.
My Thanks to the author for an ARC copy of this book, for review purposes.
You can buy Mephisto Disco, by clicking on the appropriate Amazon link, below:
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