Review | Eclectic: Ten Very Different Tales | Jonathan Hill

I downloaded Eclectic as a freebie some time ago. I was looking on a Kindle free listing site this morning and saw that this title was on offer for free again today. I remembered that I'd already downloaded it and as I haven't read any short stories for a while thought I would give Eclectic a go. 

In the forward to Eclectic, author Jonathan Hill says: "At times you may laugh or cry, or be moved, shocked, surprised or stimulated to think. Mostly, though, I hope you enjoy the variety in this collection". I thought the first part of this was a bit on the ambitious side. However, from what I'd read of the book-page sample I thought it was likely I would enjoy reading it and I did. What surprised me was that the remainder of the author's intentions came about too.

Made me laugh:
Modern Art
Meet Maureen on a visit to a popular exhibition of Modern Art. Or maybe not. Laugh aloud.
The Ornithologist
You could really imagine this happening - very funny.
Doctor, Doctor
This is the poem in the collection - hahaha.
Almost made me cry:
Thomas Turner's Talk
I hope the hint of kindness at the end marks a turning point for Thomas but I don't think it will. So real - the best story in the collection I thought.
Shocked:
The Last Laugh
Not what I was expecting at the end at all and it made me read the whole story all over again.
Surprised:
Black and White
A neat twist at the end.
Stimulated to think:
Till Death Us Do Part
Sensitive and poignant and leaves you wondering what you would be like in the same circumstances.
Game Over
I could see the ending coming and when it did it left me wondering if it was right or just a stereotype….and I'm still wondering.

This is a collection of short stories (and a poem) that lives up to its title. Most are well written and demonstrate an ability by the author to construct a neat and well rounded little tale. I didn't like The Hotel and House Full so much. The Hotel because it wasn't as sharp and precise in the writing as the others in the collection; House Full because there wasn't enough in the story to explain the ending. But the other 8 stories in the collection are really good.

Jonathan Hill says that this is his first book and it was published in June this year. It is certainly a good start to his writing career. There is another book about Maureen the star of Modern Art published a few weeks ago. I've just downloaded Maureen Goes to Venice and if it's only half as funny as her trip to the Art Exhibition it should be hilarious.