A Modern Life is a collection of thirteen short stories for time-pressed readers. A reflection on the challenges of living in the twenty-first century, A Modern Life covers a multitude of contemporary themes and styles and are categorised as “sweet” for the lighter stories, “salty” for the serious ones and “sweet and salty” for those with a mixture of humour and pathos. The collection opens with five humorous stories all featuring strong elements of slapstick comedy. The introductory story “Pork Chops and Promiscuity,” a tale of lesbian lust, sets the precedent for the remaining four comedic tales of office life, male striptease, amateur sleuthing and graveyard frolics. The following “salty” stories include tales of marriage, murder, suicide, child abduction, war, corruption and death. The collection ends with the "sweet and salty" story "Fantasia", set in the near future when Walt Disney awakes from cryogenic suspension to discover the world is not quite as he expected.
A Modern Life is a diverse compilation of stories for readers who like to be thoroughly entertained with original comedy and thought-provoking contemporary drama.
This book packs a lot into every story. Unique, quirky and original, I enjoyed every one. I don't usually read short stories, generally I prefer novels as I can get absorbed into the plot and the characters. There was plenty here to keep me entertained however, in fact I might have even snorted out loud once or twice.
The author has a humour that shines through, and this also can be evident in the more serious 'salty' stories. She has tackled such a wide range of important topics and condensed them down into these wonderful little nuggets of comedy.
I wished that some of the stories went on a little bit longer, but I liken it to being a fly on the wall and getting a brief glimpse into another persons life. I am always left with wanting to find out more. The diversity of the stories shows what a wonderful imagination the author has.
If I had to choose a favourite of all the stories it would be Fantasia. Which is a story about Walt Disney and what happens when he wakes up from Cryogenic Suspension. This one is a perfect example of how this author can blend the Sweet and the Salty and produce a story that I found quite funny but also moving.
I would also like to mention The Princess and the Thief, which I also thought was really excellent and an example of how it is possible to write heartbreak and tension in approximately three pages.
Thoroughly entertaining and even if you didn't want to read all the stories in one go, you could dip in and out of them.
About the Author:
Jane Turley doesn't take herself too seriously and believes laughter is the best medicine for life's ills. She attributes her sense of humour to her childhood spent gazing out of a Silver Cross pram in the seaside resort of Weston-super-Mare. Her excessive exposure to salty air and seagull poop left Jane with an unfortunate desire to inflict her dubious wit on everyone, including passing strangers, scarecrows and stray dogs. Unsurprisingly. sometimes people think she's odd.
Jane now lives in a village in central England where folks are very kind and give her sympathetic looks when she talks too much.
You can find her at The Witty Ways of a Wayward Wife. A place where she talks. A lot.
Jane Turley is also the author of The Changing Room.