Have I mentioned how much I love Bold Strokes Books lately? As you know, I'm in love with audiobooks, and more and more of their titles are being made available in audio (you should absolutely listen to Retirement Plan by Martha Miller, and I've just today begun The Affair of the Porcelain Dog by Jess Faraday and am loving it). A list of titles available in audio from Bold Strokes is right on the home page above, and is growing.
Second, as a publisher they do something incredibly wonderful for the authors - y'know, beyond being an awesome publisher, editor, cover-artist, and on and on - they make the all the new release e-books available to the authors pre-release by a week or two. This means that I often get to read the books before they hit the shelves (such as Crack Shot by Dale Chase, which I've mentioned here a short while ago). Being able to read all these other authors means I can also support all these other authors, and often before the book is getting out of the gate. I love it.
Specifically, today I loved it even more because the May releases included the Saints + Sinners: New Fiction from the Festival 2013 anthology. I'm not going to post about it until the actual release, but suffice it to say I've already gobbled a few stories and I'm loving them, and the introduction is wonderful.
In honor of that I'm going to revisit last year's collection...
"Mis'ry Loves Comp'ny," by Jeff Lindemann
At the 2012 launch party for the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival, I got to speak with Jeff Lindemann post-reading, and I have to say this is one of the most animated writers I've ever met. He's a battery of energy, and his prose - with the perfect cadence and tone of his beloved character accents - shine with that same amount of frenetic zeal. Religious intolerance often clashes with an everyday sort in his tales, and "Mis'ry" begins on a similar note.
Hitchhikers, judges, drivers - a lovely tangle of trust and the untrustworthy spins this vignette into something grin-worthy. I love the characters that Lindemann brings to life, and there's a real deft self-deprecating humour involved that charms. It's company worth keeping, even if there is a bit of misery.