Get Away by GJ Hart

In the kitchen of a cottage nestled among oak trees they waited – for neighbour, for colleague; for broken doors and strangers with zip-lock bags. Jay was long gone, whipping across fields, toward the blockhouse he’d carved with nails and fire. He crawled into peace and wished he could stay, wished he could curl up on the soft, wet earth and sleep. But if he did they would find him, find him without looking and he wasn’t ready for that medicine, for any medicine – just now his liberty was a sickness he refused to cure. He dug up his plane ticket, kicked things quiet and headed toward the airport.

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Literally Stories – Week 55 – Allergens not in BOLD: strong language, dodgy humour.

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Hurrah!

Santa was back on form this year. He clearly read the message I left him, very carefully unlike last year when some incompetent stand-in or faux Mr. Claus totally f***** up.

Dear Santa I wrote — as you do — I would be most grateful if you could kindly arrange it that your elves assist you in the delivery of a number of…

Now conjure up a long list of ‘literary books’ by the likes of Orwell, Dostoevsky and other suitably heavyweight names including Albert Camus.

NB: To avoid severe embarrassment as once suffered by yours truly, please note that Mr. Camus was born in Algeria (then French Algeria) and his name is pronounced, not unsurprisingly for the French, Al-Bear Ca-Moo.

Not Al-But Ca-Mus.

Any road, as we say round these parts, you can imagine the puzzlement, nay sinking feeling that besieged me, when unwrapping many book-shaped packages I came across The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton and did not subsequently discover The Outsider by said Algerian.

YA fiction is not, as you would no doubt hazard a guess, top of my must-read genre list, but to be fair to S.E.Hinton I read The Outsiders (published 1967), which was written by her when she was still in junior high school, and it is indeed a fine book of its type.

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Mr. Pascal’s Funeral Parlor by Nikki Macahon

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Mrs. Pascal’s first rule, no sweets in the parlor.

My fingers dig into the folds of my gloomy clothes, clawing at the satin that piles under my fingertips. It does not do to indulge yourself in front of the grieving, Genevieve. Her voice scratches against the walls of my head. Not when there is work to be done.

Perhaps not, Mrs. Pascal, but to deny one their sweets in time of such pain does not do as well.

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Peppermint Fresh by Chris Milam

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Living in a mouth is precisely what you’d think living in a mouth would be: wet, aromatic, and exhilarating. It’s cozy and rent-free in here. She’s not a big talker, so it stays as dark as Anchorage, Alaska during a typical winter. I sleep well. I bathe in her saliva. I nibble on specks of food that dangle from the roof like edible stalactites. When she’s wrecked and raging on a Friday night, getting blitzed on gas station wine, blaring Linda Ronstadt, we both stumble into el diablo’s embrace. When she peeks at the mirror while applying lipstick, or washing her face, I pop out and wave hello.

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