“Ox-Tales: Earth”

Only available through Waterstone’s, “Ox-Tales” is a set of four collections of short stories, poems and extracts with each one based around a theme of one of the four elements, Earth, Fire, Water and Air. With contributions from well known authors, the books are being sold in aid of Oxfam to promote the charity’s work in various project areas around the world.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my ventures into short stories over the last few years, and I so wanted to enjoy this book what with some of my favourite authors contributing and it being sold in aid of Oxfam, but unfortunately, I found it rather unsatisfying on the whole. The Earth collection included one poem, eight short stories, and one extract from a work in progress. Of these, I did enjoy the Rose Tremain story, and as she’s an author I’ve only read one book by, I was pleased to find I liked this contribution, as I have another book on my TBR list, and lots of recommendations for her others, so I will definitely be reading more. I also loved the extract called “Telescope” by Jonathan Buckley, although I’ve never actually heard of him, the extract was the most intriguing piece in the collection, and I definitely want to read the book when it’s published!

Despite not being particularly inspired by this one, I think I will probably get the others, as they are only £5 each and some of that goes to Oxfam, plus I want to see what some of the other authors I admire have contributed, but I have lowered my expectations after this instalment and will be on the look out for some other short story collections by individual authors, as these have been more rewarding.

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