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  • Writer's pictureNZ Booklovers

Kaleidoscopes in the Dark by B G Rogers

A child carefully crawls through a world of plastic waste in search of water but knows she won't make it if the blood-drinking gulls catch a glimpse of her.

A young woman plots her way onto the latest reality TV programme, where murderers are publicly executed in a manner that mirrors their crimes.

Mice conspire with a seamstress to bring her dead fiancé back to life using an old English tradition.

The stories in Kaleidoscopes in the Dark paint the more sinister elements of the psyche in technicolour.

These eleven short stories are full of black humour, remnants of fairytales and dark gothic themes. They are short, easy to read, and deeply absorbing.

Author B G Rogers takes reality and flips it, stretching and manipulating the every day into the extraordinary. Great Grandmother's Stories for example, takes human's impact on Earth, plastic and pollution, and takes readers to a time not too far away. While the horror that the little girl experiences is not going to happen, surely, it's not unbelievable.

Tiger Food is a nostalgic, but terrifying, romp through childhood books that will delight those of us who love literature.

Anyone with children will know too well how little ones love to be magpies - collecting little bits and pieces that captivate them throughout the day. Often I'll end the day with my pockets full of random rocks, feathers and sparkly things that I've been handed by an inquisitive child. The Artefact Project takes that phenomenon and pushes it into a haunted but brilliant space.

Rogers' black humour is perfectly pitched and while the stories are certainly dark, they're not scary in the traditional sense.

Grounded in reality, this is a short, succinct, quirky collection with a dark, emotive edge and intriguing twists.

Reviewer: Rebekah Lyell

B Press, RRP $19.99


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