Sunday, January 13, 2013

{Review} This Jealous Earth by Scott Dominic Carpenter

ISBN #: 978-1480172777
Page Count: 206
Copyright: October 23, 2012
Publisher: MG Press

Book Summary:
(Taken from Goodreads)

A man puts his beloved pets to the knife; a family prepares for the Rapture; a woman in a department store slips a necklace into her purse. Whatever the situation, the characters in This Jealous Earth find themselves faced with moments of decision that will forever alter the course of their lives.

Always moving and often touched with humor, Carpenter's stories examine the tension between the everyday and the transcendent - our struggle to grasp what lies beyond our reach. Whether hawking body parts in a Midwestern city, orbiting through the galleries of a Paris museum or plotting sibling tortures in an Arizona desert, his characters lead us through a series of dilemmas of universal appeal.

Kathy's Review:

I have a hard time writing reviews for short story collections. I try to consider each story on an individual basis, but also review the collection as a whole. In general, I feel the form makes it difficult to have any sort of deep connection. However, this collection of short stories has been the exception rather than the rule!

There's no doubt that the writing itself is excellent. This is a writer who is skilled at his craft. Some of the subject matter made me uncomfortable - ESPECIALLY the first story, "The Tender Knife." I almost had to skip it entirely because of the gruesome nature of what the main character had to do.

I'll make mention of a few that really struck a chord with me ... "Foundering" is one of the shortest in this collection, but clearly illustrates how quickly time moves while comparing a long-term relationship to a long voyage by sea. "Field Notes" recalls a family trip told from a child's perspective, observing the tension between his parents while gaining self-confidence as an explorer. I liked the humor of "Sincerely Yours," where a lonely man writes scathing correspondence to a billing collector, but looks forward to receiving the replies, hoping for a human connection.

Each has its own exceptional qualities but overall this is an outstanding and well written collection of short stories. I would enjoy seeing the author's other work.

*An ecopy of this book was provided by the publicist, MG Press, in exchange for an honest review.


  1. Hi Kathy,
    I was wondering if you are currently accepting ebooks for review. If so, I would like to ask if you would be interested in reviewing my latest Y/A Sci-Fi Mystery "The Flash Point Project,"
    It is a story about Tom our protagonist, who survives a cataclysmic event after which he discovers that he is all alone and struggles to survive. After an out of this world storm he discovers a 200 level underground city. While it provides for all his necessities to live it also holds a dark secret. We follow Tom as he explores the many testing labs and the adventures it allows him to travel. Eventually he discovers Rose and together they discover the secrets of "The Flash Point project" as it begins to unravel. This is the first of a series. My website for more info. on this ebook as well as others I have written.

  2. I realize you don’t usually review humor, but given your love for “snarky,” my book might be of interest to you:
    And I Have To Pay For The F*cking Flowers? A heads up for the Father of the Bride on how you are about to get really screwed. (And a few things you can do about it.)
    This is a short, humorous guide, poking fun at the weird and wonderful world of wedding rituals and customs.
    The Father of the Bride will discover why the simple process of two people exchanging vows can make a college graduate’s student loan debt seem like pocket change.
    Sample chapters are:
    • No matter what your favorite flowers are, they will be out of season
    • Your computer has over 90 different fonts. So of course you will pay someone else to create the invitations.
    • When your guests can’t eat another bite, it’s time to serve them dinner
    If you truly enjoy offbeat humor, then I hope you will consider for it a review.
    I would be glad to provide the paperback or e-Book.


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