“The glory of a nation could endure through the ages. What his comrades failed to fully comprehend was that it must be oiled with human blood.”
“French Quarter Fiction: The Newest Stories of America’s Oldest Bohemia” edited by Joshua Clark
I am a huge fan of anthologies, so much so that I’m attempting to start my own and Joshua Clark’s offerings in French Quarter Fiction are good examples of why. With an anthology, you can get such a rich variety of different tales from so many different voices; a good anthology can make you marvel over how many diversely talent people there are in the world. Match up that with one of my favorite literary topics, New Orleans, and you’ve got yourself an excellent compilation that sticks to your memory like glue.
There was not a single story in French Quarter Fiction that didn’t captivate me in some way, though some were more effective than others. Some of the bright shining stars were tales of mystery and wonder with deep, heady prose that just seemed to ooze with the atmosphere of their inspiration. Maker Clark’s enigmatic ghost story “Tide of the Sun” still clings with me like his ghosts clinging to this earth. Joe Longo’s “S.I.N.ners” hit a raw nerve of appreciation from someone whose work experience has been firmly rooted in the service industry for over a decade. Meanwhile, Marda Burton’s “Making Groceries” hit me so hard with a left hook that I nearly broke down in the middle of a mall courtyard while on my lunch break. These examples are just three of my favorites; there’s a plethora more of stories I would recommend as my highlights, out of 37 fantastic tales.
Atmospheric, moving, decadent, and beautiful, I would highly recommend French Quarter Fiction even to those without the same long-distance love affair with New Orleans that I have. These are some beautifully crafted, wonderfully transporting tales perfect for hot, stormy nights. Even better, I picked up this book during a sale and it cost me about three bucks. BONUS!
Books read: 016/100.