David-Michael Harding is known mostly as a writer of historical fiction but in “The Cats of Savone” he gives readers a variety of stories to choose from. Subtitled “8 Short Novels for Busy People” this collection of short stories serves as an introduction to his work.
Even though they are short stories the action is fast paced and the characters are deep and well developed. Each of these stories read like a full length novel and take the reader on a roller coaster of emotions and showcases Mr Harding’s versatility in storytelling. There is something for everyone regardless of their taste in literature.
Standouts include ‘Black Men in Bright Blue’ because of the details regarding slavery and the Civil War and ‘The History of Texas According to Henry Bass’ for those familiar with Texas history. ‘St Alden’s’ will appeal to fans of science fiction and fantasy. It is highly recommended.
- The Cats of Savone – a pregnant cat makes her way into the exercise yard of the Savone Correctional Facility and affects the lives of hardened criminals.
- My Boo Radley – there is an old man who everyone in the neighborhood sees as a monster but a high school baseball pitcher takes the time to get to know him.
- Black Men in Bright Blue – this story takes place in South Carolina in 1864 as ten year old Rachel Justice learns about slavery amid the Civil War.
- The Jazz Bridge – an ordinary bridge becomes the location of a parade and celebration of jazz.
- St Alden’s - A classic battle between good and evil takes place in a university campus in a fantasy world far away as the old Guardian of the campus passes the torch to his grandson.
- The Junket – an old man is on a road trip to Las Vegas looking for “painted girls” but finds a friend in an old prostitute.
- Forever Beneath the Celtic Sea – A German submarine crosses paths with the Lusitania during World War I with disastrous results.
- The History of West Texas According to Henry Bass – Henry Bass is a patient dying in a tent hospital for tuberculosis patients in El Paso. He recounts stories ranging from the Alamo to the massacre at Goliad and gives him the ultimate gift after he passes away.
*A copy of this book was given for an honest review. The opinions expressed in this article are solely the author’s.