Friday, October 31, 2014



Many know David Benioff as one half of the team that created the stellar Game of Thrones HBO series adaptation. And no problem, that show is awesome and it's one of the most impressive film adaptations I've seen of fiction. But I originally was a fan of Benioff's work as an author, with both of his fantastic novels (the New York crime drama The 25th Hour and the WWII coming of age adventure, City of Thieves) on my list of favorites! Now I've finally completed the author's short list of fiction work with this solid collection of short stories.  
Each story is a slice of life tale, not featuring large moments of action, but instead focusing on each character at a critical turning point in their lives or at a time when they have to make the hard decisions. As usual, Benioff writes with a poetic ease and injects each story with a tangible atmosphere. My favorites in the collection were "De Composition," about a man struggling with his sanity after hunkering down in a survival bunker during the end of the world (I love how Benioff is intentionally vague with what is possibly an awesome reveal), "Garden of No," about a young waitress/wannabe actress in Hollywood about to hit her big break, and the heartbreaking final story "Merde for Luck," that follows a gay couple in New York City as they struggle with AIDS during the mid-90's.
"So many die without our caring, decline to silence in rooms beyond hearing. We honor the dead and abhor the dying."
As much as I love Game of Thrones, a hope that Benioff returns to write more awesome books, he's up there on my list with Scott B. Smith as being overdue for another great novel!

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