Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day, by Ben Loory

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Author’s website
Publication date – July 26, 2011

Summary: (Taken from GoodReads) Loory’s collection of wry and witty, dark and perilous contemporary fables is populated by people–and monsters and trees and jocular octopi–who are united by twin motivations: fear and desire. In his singular universe, televisions talk (and sometimes sing), animals live in small apartments where their nephews visit from the sea, and men and women and boys and girls fall down wells and fly through space and find love on Ferris wheels. In a voice full of fable, myth, and dream, Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day draws us into a world of delightfully wicked recognitions, and introduces us to a writer of uncommon talent and imagination.

Thoughts: I was thrilled to have won a copy of this book, since it was one that I’d wanted since, oh, around the time it was published. Lack of cash always seems to be my downfall in acquiring the new books that I want… But that’s neither here nor there. What is here, there, and all the spaces in between, in Loory’s Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day.

This book, written in the style of fables that call to mind the numerous tales of Aesop, is hard to categorize. Horror, science fiction, speculative, just plain weird, it’s all of these things together, and yet reducing it to just one category doesn’t quite express what’s contained within the pages. One particular story put me in the mind of a Japanese horror film, even (and I wonder if that’s where Loory drew some of his inspiration from, in some cases).

The fables are modern, and aren’t entirely morality plays, though there is a lesson to be taken from each of them. The theme behind most of the stories seems to be along the lines of the world not being what it appears to be and yet at the same time shaped by our perceptions of it, which is a line of thought that I can really get into. The characters are not always human, instead sometimes becoming sentient plants or animals, which is not uncommon for fables, and always a fun change of perspective which can serve to underscore the message that the author or the tale is trying to convey.

Loory shows a great amount of creativity with the stories he wrote for this one, and quite frankly, I think it’s a worthy addition to the bookshelves of anybody who enjoys tales that are just on the other side of the “weird” line.

One comment on “Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day, by Ben Loory

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