Friday, September 28, 2012

Guest Reviewer Week! Brianna Soloski (@girlseeksplace) reviews Town of Shadows. #FridayReads

Town of Shadows by Lindsay Stern 
96 pages (PDF version) ~ 5/5 stars

“Enter the Town of Shadows, where noise is ‘the color of rain,’ and the self is a ‘hidden crowd.’ Indeed like shadows, the town's inhabitants are elusive—slipping in and out of mirrors, wandering down secret corridors of the mind, hiding in the spines of houses—and perpetually at risk of disappearing or being ‘deleted.’ Lindsay Stern's brilliant, urgent vignettes depict a people struggling to make sense of the limits of language and time. A dark and fascinating debut." — Hanna Andrews, American Poet

(Goodreads description)

I get a fair number of books to review, although it’s tapered off recently, which is fine by me. I have plenty to read and plenty to write. That being said, when Lindsay contacted me and said that J.A. Tyler from Mud Luscious Press had recommended me to review her book, I jumped on it, and I’m so glad I did.

In the vein of Matt Bell’s Cataclysm Baby comes Town of Shadows, a series of short stories all tied together with a bow. The main characters are Pierre and SelmaSelma is a writer and Pierre is doing a series of experiments. The other characters in the town of shadows are just that…shadows. We never fully get to know anyone, but we are still drawn into their stories. The mayor of the town likes to make up rules for the town, like not using vowels. Every time there’s a new rule, there is someone who goes around and fixes up the gravestones.

I am fast becoming a fan of dystopian, seemingly post-apocalyptic fiction. Perhaps that isn’t an accurate description of Town of Shadows, but it’s my gut instinct when trying to come up with something to describe this book. The stories are lyrical, different but all fitting together neatly into a puzzle of this nameless town.

My favorite story was What Will Happen in which Pierre asks Selma what will happen if he writes a novel:

“Suppose I try it,” said Pierre.
“Try what?’ Selma blinked.
“Writing a book.”
”Suppose you do.”
“What will happen?”

As a writer, I especially liked this because that’s exactly what happens when you write a book. Words appear and string themselves together into a coherent story for people to enjoy. It’s a process that is not easily understood, in my opinion. There’s not some magical thing that happens.

Town of Shadows isn’t available for purchase yet at major retailers, but can be found on GoodReads.

Disclaimer: I received this book directly from the author. I was not compensated in any way and all opinions are my own.

About the Reviewer

Brianna Soloski is an avid reader and writer. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities from Sierra Nevada College. She also obtained her teaching credential from the college. Although she’s not currently teaching, she enjoys spending time with her friends’ kids. In her spare time, she loves to travel and would love to book a world cruise – imagine the memoir that could come from an adventure like that! Girl Seeks Place is her first full length novel and will be released October 26, 2012. She can be found blogging at She can also be found on Facebook at, and @girlseeksplace on Twitter.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for guest reviewing on my blog! I don't read many short stories, but this seems like something I could get into.