Thursday, December 19, 2019

From Sea to Stormy Sea: 17 Paintings by Great American Artists and the Stories They Inspired by Lawrence Block

The paintings are all by American artists.  They include:  Harvey Dunn, John Steuart Curry, Reginald Marsh, Thomas Hart Benton, Helen Frankenthaler, Winslow Homer, Rockwell Kent, Grant Wood, Childe Hassam and Andy Warhol.  Some of the authors included are:  Jerome Charyn, Jane Hamilton, Christa Faust, John Sandford, Sara Paretsky, Walter Mosley, Charles Ardai, Barry Malzberg, and Janice Eidus. 

Mr Block sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  It has been published and you can get a copy now.

Here's a list of the contents:
The Prairie is My Garden, copyright © 2019 Patti Abbott
Mother of Pearl, copyright © 2019 Ardai
Superficial Injuries, copyright © 2019 Jan Burke
Man from Hard Rock Mountain, copyright © 2019 Jerome Charyn
Adrift Off the Diamond Shoals, copyright © 2019 Brendan DuBois
You’re a Walking Time Bomb, copyright © 2019 Janice Eidus
Garnets, copyright © 2019 Christa Faust
He Came In Through the Bathroom Window, copyright © 2019 Scott Frank
On Little Terry Road, copyright © 2019 Tom Franklin
Someday a Revolution, copyright © 2019 Jane Hamilton
River Front, copyright © 2019 Barry N. Malzberg
Silver at Lakeside, copyright © 2019 Warren Moore
Get Him, copyright © 2019 Micah Nathan
Baptism in Kansas, copyright © 2019 Sara Paretsky
A Matter of Options, copyright © 2019 Gary Phillips
Girl With an Ax, copyright © 2019 John Sandford
The Way We See the World, copyright © 2019 Lawrence Block

My favorite of the tales was "Get Him" by Micah Nathan.  "Girl With an Ax" also caught my attention.

Most of these stories were almost horror stories.  They aren't happily ever after stories but they do get your attention and you wonder what the author is going to do to the characters.  I expected a bit lighter stories since this was American art but that's not what the authors saw.

When I was in high school I took a creative writing.  The teacher would put up various pictures.  We could pick which one talked to us and then had to write a short story based on it.  I usually picked one no one else did, but if someone picked the same picture our stories were no way alike.

It's what you see when you look at that picture that makes the story you write.  These authors didn't see encouraging things.  But many of the pictures were not positive either.

All in all, this was an interesting anthology and well worth the read. 

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