The Lost Librarian’s Grave—coming October 1, 2021.
Kurt Newton’s short story, “The Little People,” drops us into the middle of a dangerous situation with a young woman named Becca as she flees into a twilight wood of mystery, magic and misdirection. (From the proverbial frying pan into the fire?) The episode turns out to be the journey of Becca’s life in more ways than one.
I enjoyed how Kurt’s story reads like a fairy story, and how he judiciously uses repetition of certain words and phrases, which to my eye and ear enhances this effect. Despite being set in modern times rather than “Once Upon a Time,” I do think our author has penned a tale that is both fun and fulfills Professor Tolkien’s working definition of a fairy story.*
Kurt has authored two novels, The Wishnik and Powerlines, as well as over 400 poems and 250 short stories, published all over North America, Europe, and Australia. His work is usually set in the rural landscapes of New England, which isn’t surprising since he lives in the northeast corner of Connecticut.
Newton has received sixteen honorable mentions from the editors of The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and has been nominated four times for the Rhysling Award for his poetry.
Look for his third collection of short stories, Bruises, which will appear later in 2021 from Lycan Valley Press, as well as, The Music of Murder, a collection of crime fiction from Unnerving Books.
A busy fellow indeed! You can find much of Kurt’s work on his Amazon author page, and of course, this October, ensconced in the profane pages of The Lost Librarian’s Grave.
* “A ‘fairy-story’ is one which touches on or uses Faerie, whatever its own main purpose may be: satire, adventure, morality, fantasy. Faerie itself may perhaps most nearly be translated by Magic—but it is magic of a peculiar mood and power, at the furthest pole from the vulgar devices of the laborious, scientific, magician. There is one proviso: if there is any satire present in the tale, one thing must not be made fun of, the magic itself. That must in that story be taken seriously, neither laughed at nor explained away.”
— Tolkien On Fairy-stories, edited by Flieger & Anderson, pp. 32-33.