Fifty-Five: City Edition by Tearra Rhodes

Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me.

Fifty-Five: City Edition: A Collection of 55-Word Stories by Tearra Rhodes

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

A server at a city mission, with the chance to redeem something after a failed attempt at culinary school. A young man with no taste for coffee, working up the courage to talk to a cheery barista at an uptown bistro. The mother of a small child, facing the possibility of again living in her car. These stories and more are found in Fifty-Five: City Edition by author Tearra Rhodes.

Contemporary stories each composed of fifty-five words. I believe this is only my second time reading a flash fiction collection, and while I wouldn’t say I’m an expert on this particular form of storytelling, I’m no newbie to the art of storytelling in general. So I’m comfortable saying this collection is quite a credit to the art of flash fiction.

So much can be wrapped up in just a few words when a writer knows how to wield them, and page after page in this short book takes a close and compelling look at life, with faith woven in. Some of the stories are connected to pack a bonus punch, while others get the job done on their own. I found myself smiling, “hm”-ing, or shaking my head (in a good way) after many of them, and one of the stories brought tears to my eyes.

Just that fast. In fifty-five words.

Whether you’re new to the world of microfiction or not, if you believe that effective messages aren’t shackled to wordiness and that great storytelling comes in various forms—or even if you’re a little skeptical about short works of fiction—I’d encourage you to give this inspirational collection a go.


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