Very short stories #41

Thankfully, the oppressively hot weather seems to have left us (for now…) and it’s time to get out the anoraks, rain hats, boots and umbrellas. Not that I use umbrellas after losing my last one within 15 min of buying it 😳 . (Left it in a phone booth, which gives you an idea of how long ago that was.)

Writing-wise, The Sapphire Solution is going through beta reads on Scribophile, where I workshop all my fiction. I’m reasonably pleased with how the draft is looking, although no doubt my beta readers will point out all kinds of problems that will then need to be dealt with. It’s too early to predict a release date. Hopefully this side of Christmas.

Gwen and Iggy

And after that? Rich may get dragged into a third adventure, but we’ll have to see see where the current one ends up 🙂

Book reviews

Here’s my latest bunch of book reviews, all but the first one on Kindle Unlimited. It’s a mix of fantasy, science fiction and cosy mystery this time round.

Best of British Science Fiction 2021, edited by Donna Scott
The Windsor Knot by SJ Bennett
A Lonely Magic by SJ Wynde
The Ruins of Acheron by Lou Schreiber
The Hackney Horror: A Weird Sherlock Holmes Adventure by William Meikle
Verit the Vicious and Other Stories in Aneterra: Volume 1 by Elliott Wink

I’m still on a quest for Golden Age mysteries. I got 30% through The Death Miser by John Creasey (the first of ?28 in the Department Z series, first published in 1933) but bailed out because of the minimal characterisation and illogical plot. If you’ve read any of the later books in the series and think they improve, please let me know and I’ll have a look. Or any other recommendations 🙂

Very short stories

This bunch of stories is from around April this year.


The purser arrives on deck. “What’s up, Captain?”
“Not only do we have a traitor, our motors don’t have enough thrust to escape!”
He glances at the crates. “Jettison some supplies?”
“Sort of.” The captain shoves. “My compliments to your boss.”


The rogue grinned. “A dragon’s no match for my switcheroo.”
“Whaddya get?”
He rolled over a head-sized oval rock, gold veins glistening on its surface. “Doesn’t look like much, but—”
“Uh oh.”
“—he’ll never notice.”
“Yes, she will. That’s her egg.”

go and take

“I’m telling you.” I point at the door. “Take your stuff and go.”
“Or what?” With a smirk, you lean back and put your feet up on the table.
“Fine.” I stomp out of the house, slam the door and yell, “All clear!” to the demolition crew.


The swordsman groaned. “They’re raising the gallows. Why did we surrender? The gang’ll never arrive in time.”
“D’you know why he’s called a pillar of the community?”
“Who cares?”
“Double-check the nails…” came a voice.
“I do. This guy holds everything up.”

4 thoughts on “Very short stories #41

  1. For Golden Age mysteries, have you ever tried Rex Stout (the Nero Wolfe series)? I always enjoyed those. They’re really a blend of Golden Age and hard-boiled fiction, though definitely leaning toward the former in overall tone.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not much of a mystery fan, but if you haven’t read Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe, you should. I enjoyed some J.S, Fletcher mysteries like the Middle Temple Murder, many of which can be found on Gutemburg. Robert van Gulik’s Judge Dee mysteries set in China are really good, And how can I leave out Georges Simeon’s Inspector Maigret, especially the early ones?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Chuck. I read a bit of Chandler a long time ago but had never come across JS Fletcher. Project Gutenberg is a great resource, though you do need some idea what you’re looking for 🙂


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