After figuring out that Reinheit by Thomas Flowers is a novel which has descriptions of German (Einzatsgruppen) wartime atrocities, it was interesting for me to know where the name came from. A translation of Reinheit is “purity.” That may have been stated in the novel somewhere but if so, I missed it. It makes a lot of sense on at least two levels after reading this fascinating tale told from the perspectives of two time periods. There is no time travel although there is a bit of fantasy involved. There may be some readers that believe the protagonist is a chair.
Here is something to start out your day with a jolt (but painlessly). Flash fiction. It is quick to read and almost by definition authors create it to surprise you either by the content or innovative organization of ideas. Five Free Flash Fiction Pieces by Paul D. Dail does that. The only thing unsurprising about it is the price. Refer to the title. It is for sale on Amazon at the price indicated by the title.
I received One Night by Deanna Cabinian from the author. At first a bit reluctant to read something described as a “coming of age” novel, I am glad I did. I have a category I like to call a “comfort read.” Nothing in it should give offense to anyone (IMHO). It borders on fantasy in that the characters are almost too perfect and, in several cases, too mature in behavior and opinion for their chronological age. In the first few pages, I worried the story would spiral down into sappy, syrupy, sentimental storytelling in a nostalgic search for an imagined perfect past. That did not happen. The tightly controlled crisp writing moved the story along at almost page-turner speed. There are nicely woven reflections on quality of life, the inevitability of death, different perceptions of love (requited and unrequited) and the values of a strong family life. What could have been sappy was rescued by the writers skill into something really good. On an Amazon scale, I gave this a five-star rating, something I have never done with a “comfort read.” I highly recommend this for the YA crowd and will nag my son until he reads at least parts of it.