Saturday, November 15, 2014

Gifts Not Yet Given / Kergan Edwards-Stout

Reviewed by: BigAl

Genre: Short Story Collection

Approximate word count: 55-60,000 words

Kindle  US: YES  UK: YES  Nook: YES  Smashwords: NO Paper: YES
Click on a YES above to go to appropriate page in Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords store


“Kergan Edwards-Stout is an award-winning author, whose debut novel, Songs for the New Depression, won the 2012 Next Generation Indie Book Award in the LGBTQ category, was shortlisted for the Independent Literary Awards, and placed on four "Best Books of 2012" lists.”

For more, visit Edwards-Stout’s website.


“In Gifts Not Yet Given, a warm and nuanced collection of short stories, dreams are realized, hope is found, memories are made, and life is treasured. Each is set around a holiday, from Halloween to Memorial Day, Thanksgiving to Christmas, and the tales illuminate the small, surprising, and pivotal moments in which personal awakenings occur and hearts expand.”


There isn’t a lot to say about this collection that isn’t in the description other than to say it lives up to its promise. Excellent, well written stories that evoke a wide range of emotions from the reader. An example, and one of my favorites, is the story call Festive Beaver, the story of an elementary school boy who discovers talents and inclinations that he doesn’t yet understand while helping put together a Mardi Gras celebration.

In many of the stories, I found that I figured things out before they were fully revealed or the story’s focal character discovered things on their own. This set the stories up in such a way that I was pulling for the character, not only to discover or learn what they needed to, but also to do so in the least painful possible way. The ability to pull me into a short story as quickly and deeply as these did is a talent I don’t see often in shorter works.


Adult language.

A few of the stories have gay characters. If that makes you uncomfortable, this might not be the book for you.

Format/Typo Issues:

No significant issues

Rating: **** Five Stars

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