Book Review: Reading 5X5 (x2)

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Book Review: Reading 5X5 (x2) Editor B. Morris Allen
(Metaphorosis Publishing)
Publication date: 01 Aug 2020
Genre: SFF Anthology of Short Stories (I got an e-ARC from Netgalley)

I reviewed the eARC of the previous book Reading 5×5 (Writer’s Edition). The one under review is like Book 2, or perhaps reflects the tagline of “Duets.” This is a new innovative configuration with iconography et al, in which five authors are teamed up with each other to write stories based on given prompts/theme, and also to write a solo story. The creativity of the Editor never ceases!

In this anthology, there are fifteen stories, of which ten are duets and the rest are by individual authors. The stories range from science fiction to fantasy.

While all the stories are great, for me a few stories prominently stood out. These include

The Relic by J. Tynan Burke and L’Erin Ogle
Sudden Oak Death by J. Tynan Burke
The Firmament by Douglas Anstruther
Memories Written in Scars by L’Erin Ogle
Titanotheosis by David Gallay and Evan Marcroft

Though, by the Kindle file, it is difficult to judge the size of the book, but it is clear that the authors were given the necessary spread and were not hampered by word limits. So, in some stories we find some wonderful exposition, which is often missing in the short story segment.

Also, the Writing Process segment gives an insight to the way the authors approached not just the story, but also the team work. It is equally fascinating to see that in the duet stories, while some authors found that there vision about the story was similar, in other cases, the visions were different, and despite of that, they were able to create a wonderful story.

Overall excellent.

Copyright © Anup Mukherjee

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