by Rana Asfour
A big YAY! for the weird and wonderful world of the World Wide Web. It is there where one can find innovative solutions to irritating every day issues. One example is the email inbox with its flood of frustrating, stressful, and anger inducing messages that are enough to make one go mad. Step in the brainy and brilliant people at 'The Season of Stories'; their mission is to make your email inbox a better - and happier - place, one story at a time.
Starting October 11 (yesterday) for a limited time they'll be emailing eleven fiction tales directly to readers, all written in the first person. Every week, a different Penguin Random House author will take over the newsletter, including award-winning and bestselling authors like Anthony Marra, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Adam Johnson. Seriously, how awesome is that?
You’ll receive a piece of a story one day at a time until the full narrative wraps up just in time for the weekend.The stories are FREE and will only be in the emails (you won’t be able to get them anywhere else!).
Yesterday, yours truly received her first instalment of these stories called 'Juliet' by Elizabeth McCracken, author of 'Thunderstruck & Other Stories'. It is so good that I cannot wait for today's part II.
The story so far is about a weird library in which the children's room houses a bunny called 'Kaspar Hauser', who the narrator figures probably 'prayed nightly to become a ghost' to escape the taunting of the children who came to see it; three finches happy in their communal cage, and fish who 'maybe wept in the terrible privacy of their tank'.
This library is a place where people seek 'not just books but attention and advice and, in case of one widower, the occasional rear end to pat affectionately'. There are all sorts of people coming in and going out, inquiring about one thing or other. Old people, two transgendered patrons one of whom is a radical lesbian, teenagers who want to nap and a man who just wanted to punch someone. That's just to name a few.
However, it is the mysterious Juliet, a young woman in her late twenties, with long loose dark hair, who visits the library for the first time on a Monday who captures the attention and imagination of the library dwellers. It seems something terrible might be about to happen to Juliet, but I'm not quite sure what it is yet but the fact that she 'clutched a book in her hand in such a way that it looked like a knife she was prepared to use on herself' gives me a creepy feeling. Other clues? She is described as having 'something forsaken and hopeful about her' and she's wearing white. That always reads as this woman might be facing a gory, violent and miserable end, Right? Or is it just me? hmm.
Intrigued? All you have to do to is sign up with your email after clicking HERE.