Book Review: “Delightfully Twisted Tales: Fire, Fangs and Brimstone (Volume Two)” by Nicky Drayden

Twisted Tales 2These stories are ideal for when you just want something quick and light. After reading some long, emotionally-charged novels, I find it’s a perfect change of pace to read one of Drayden’s weird tales. My mother told me once that in ancient Greek drama, after the heavy tragedies were over, they would close the evening out with a slapstick comedy.* That’s kind of what this is, and it works beautifully as a break after reading a serious novel.

If you read my review of Volume One in this series, all you need to know is that this is more of the same. If there’s a difference, it’s that the first volume was more sci-fi in tone, and this one is more fantasy/horror. But that’s the only difference–otherwise, these stories exhibit the same twisted sense of humor and the same bite-sized length.

Again, these stories are very short, so I won’t review them in-depth. Half the fun is realizing what the concept of the story is, as they each usually involve combining some mundane, familiar concept with something from the world of mythology or fantasy. The stylistic parallel to the comic strip The Far Side that I noted in my review of Volume One still holds.

If you read the Amazon reviews, you’ll notice some people complain about the brevity of these tales. This, in my opinion, just speaks to how tough the book market is. It may not seem like much to readers, but it takes a non-trivial amount of effort to come up with four funny stories, write them all down, proofread them, and get them published. The thing only costs 99 cents, for heaven’s sakes! 99 cents for a few good chuckles is a bargain, in my opinion.

With that said, you can get a set containing Volumes One through Six of this series, also for 99 cents, if you’re really serious about maximizing the quantity of stories you get for your money. Drayden’s stories are the perfect little treat for when you want to read something to tickle your imagination, but don’t want to commit to a whole novel.

(*My mom is a classicist. I didn’t want you thinking she was actually around in Ancient Greece. 🙂 )


    1. Just looked it up, and yeah, I’m not sure I could take reading a pandemic book right now. Even though “The Seneca Scourge” by Carrie Rubin is one of my favorites.

      Thanks for the comment! 🙂

  1. Glad to know your mother was a very classy lady. I got the books. I need some comic relief right now. I’ve done my final proof of Stephanus and getting it ready for e-publishing.

  2. I am happy to announce that Stephanus is now available on Amazon for .99. Rent for free with unlimited.

  3. This sounds like a fun book. I don’t mind short fiction at all, so may pick it up for that nice break between heavier reads. Thanks for the recommendation. 🙂

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