Holding Fire: Short Stories of Self-Destruction by Scott Hughes

Holding Fire: Short Stories of Self-Destruction by Scott Hughes

"Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned." 

"Holding Fire" contains 10 short stories within the theme of the self-destructiveness of vengeance and hate. The stories were each carefully selected by a team of judges from nearly a thousand entries. The amazing stories in this book are completely exclusive to this book! You won't find them anywhere else. 

This book contains stories written by extremely talented up-and-coming writers. When you read this book, you are supporting these authors and helping make their well-deserved dreams come true. 

This book is the result of an exciting creative project. The 10 different authors featured in this powerful book are real people eager to have you read their work. The book comes with an invitation to discuss the short stories with the writers. 

Not only will you love the page-turning stories, but you will be helping support these talented, deserving independent writers! 

Stories by Maggie Stancu, Joy Meehan, Chris Chan, Isobel Sheene, Jessica Phillips, Tayah Reed, John Mallon, J.B. Rice, Kristi Hudecek-Ashwill, and Julieanne Swiatczak.

Hey! Here's my review.

Each of the ten short stories were written by a different author and were very different in their styles, but were all linked by the common theme of self destruction.  There were diary and letter styled first person narratives as well as many third person narratives. Most of the stories were contemporary, but there was one that had a medieval feel to it and another with a touch of the paranormal. One of the stories was reminiscent of a classic Agatha Christie tale and on reading the author bio at the end, I saw that he was an International Goodwill Ambassador for Agatha Christie Ltd.  I loved how each author interpreted the theme in their own way. Many of the stories ended with a character being consumed by their self destructive obsession, but some left you with a feeling of hope and the joy of seeing a character grow and heal. 

Some of the themes explored were revenge & vengeance, murder & suicide, trust & manipulation, workplace bullying & familial jealousy, child abuse & mental illness. The varied characters included highschool students, stay at home mothers, mother in laws, retired investigators, psychopaths and everyday people like you and me.

I've often read short stories that left me wondering what they were even about. Not these ones. Some stories I connected with more than others, but I felt like I understood the point of each of them. I was impressed with the standard of writing as many of the authors are still in highschool. 

I received this book free from Online Book Club in exchange for an honest review.


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