Sunday, 4 August 2013

The Liar and other stories- Matthew W. McFarland

I am not always the biggest fan of short story collections.  Personally, I find they can be frustrating, particularly when they have little purpose, plot or an unsatisfactory ending.

However, there was none of that with The Liar and other stories.  Each individual plotline is unique, intriguing and well developed, predominantly studying the way one moment or decision can change the course of life.  As such, when reading Matthew W. McFarland's work there is an unsettling feeling that the 'normal' can quickly twist into a dark, threatening or nerve-wracking moment where the unexpected is always a possible.

'The Savant' and 'Toxic Love' were the two stand out tales for me, yet this collection of six short stories has no 'fillers'.  The topics covered are diverse, including a hospital visit from the perspective of a four-year-old, a one-night-stand that becomes a frightening experience and a fame-hungry woman who ends up making the front pages for reasons she would never have expected.

McFarland writes in a straight-forward, accessible way which makes this collection very readable.  Perfect for those who have no time to commit to reading a novel, as well as fans of fast-paced short stories,  The Liar and other stories was a fascinating compilation that piqued my interest in this author.  The only downside for me was that I felt the collection could have been longer, which is a testament to how much I enjoyed the inventive stories Matthew W. McFarland has constructed.

With thanks to Matthew W. McFarland for providing me with a review copy of this collection.  All views expressed are my own.

You can find out more about Matthew W. McFarland by following him on twitter @mcfarlandwriter or by visiting his website.

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