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Review Round-Up: Shorts Season

With the three most recent titles from our 2021 Shorts Season getting reviews online, we thought we would do a review round-up to see what people have been saying! Without further ado, here are the latest reviews...

Manchester Review of Books: Joe Darlington reviews Pigskin by David Hartley and Hassan’s Zoo by Ruth Brandt:

Of Pigskin, Joe says:

"Pigskin is eerie at first, then disgusting, then outright horrifying...To compare it to its clearest predecessor, Animal Farm; Orwell’s novel is at its best, I believe, when we read it as a universal tale of revolutionary hopes betrayed...It’s a truly innovative work."

Of Hassan's Zoo, Joe says:

"Hassan’s Zoo, is more realist (than Pigskin)...Brandt’s animals, confused and terrified, embody for us both innocence and victimhood...Brandt’s story is shorter than Hartley’s, and is followed by another short, “A Village in Winter”. A childhood tale about “Matt the Frost”, it’s a perfect little snowflake at only four pages long; unique and glimmering."

Juliette Writes: Juliette van der Molen (Ann van der Giessen) reviews Muscle and Mouth by Louise Finnigan:

"Muscle and Mouth by Louise Finnigan is an absolute gem of a story...Finnigan snares

me before I even realise I’m in the trap. I’m turning pages and the book I meant to put down so I could have some lunch has now become my lunch. I’m devouring it...This story should be required reading in our schools. But more than a story meant to be read, it feels like an invitation for change."


Are you wanting to make a name for yourself as a writer? Our 2022 Shorts Season anthology is open for manuscript submissions, and we would love to read your work if you think it fits with our socially conscious and accessible mission! We're particularly keen to read any short stories that delve into the inherent politics that comes with gothic fairytale and folklore retellings...

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