Strange Stories by Dave Terruso
Thank you so much to author Dave Terruso for providing me with a copy of his book in exchange for this honest review. I was also a beta reader for most of these stories and had a wee bit of influence on the outcome. Whichever one you like the most, that was because of me 😉
I’ve been singing the praises of author Terruso since the beginning of my blog. Book 1 in the Alter Ego series was one of the first books I accepted for review and it showed me the kind of gold that I could find when taking a risk on self published books. Since then I have demonstrated such an enthusiasm for his works that he’s trusted me to be a beta reader for 4 (and hopefully counting) new releases.
Clearly, I have a bit of bias writing his reviews now. I’ll admit that. But I always strive for honesty and transparency here, so please believe me when I say read all of Dave Terruso’s books already!
Strange Stories contains 6 short stories ranging from just a couple of pages to over 40 pages long. I’m a fan of longer short stories because you’re able to get a full plot in. Too many short stories are just snapshots of larger ideas. These stories actually contain whole ideas, character development, conflicts, resolutions, all those things that make a book worth reading.
Most of the stories have a science fiction element to them but all of the stories contain an irony or surprise that would feel at home in a Twilight Zone episode.
The interesting part about short story collections is that different stories may resonate stronger with different audiences. The story that I most connect to may be the one that you find most forgettable.
Personally, Rachel Rachel Rachel was by far my favorite of the bunch. When I read the beta version I had such a powerful reaction to it that it made me cry. But I also just happen to have a personal experience that made me think of something intimately unique to my history, something melancholy that triggered an intense response.
But on the flip side, I just couldn’t get into the story titled Maptown. It’s hard to articulate why, it just didn’t do it for me. I think it’s interesting enough, the concept is clear, and I like the characters. It just didn’t make anything in my brain light up with excitement.
However, judging by other reviews for this book, Maptown is many readers’ favorite story in Strange Stories. I strongly believe that great stories will not be great to every reader. If something pleases the masses it is probably bland, inoffensive, and timid. Terruso takes chances and pours as much of his own soul and experience into his books as his imagination. Strange Stories is equal parts humble confession and out of this world “what ifs.”
I would love to hear which stories in Strange Stories are your favorites. Please treat yourself to this collection, use it as a jumping off point for the rest of Terruso’s work, and comment at me when you’ve completed this enjoyable homework assignment.
4/5 powerfully ironic playing cards 🃏🃏🃏🃏
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Buy it here: Strange Stories