Dreaming in Quantum and Other Stories
by Lynda Clark
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Pub Date 01 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 20 May 2021
A Note From the Publisher
Contains ‘Ghillie’s Mum’ – shortlisted for the 2019 BBC National Short Story Award, 2020 ALCS Tom-Gallon Trust Award and regional winner of the Commonwealth Short Story Prize for Europe and Canada.
'In Lynda Clark’s high-concept horrors, even the strangest perversions of science and biology can feel sadly familiar, hinting at the fantasies we tell ourselves to explain, or run away from, the darkest moments of our lives.' —Nick Mulgrew, author of A Hibiscus Coast
'Lynda Clark's stories are thought-provoking, very funny, sometimes poignant, and always entertaining, with a whole Buffyverse-worth of plotlines and nice, fat, satisfying endings.' —Jo Lloyd, winner of the BBC National Short Story Award 2019
Average rating from 7 members
I really enjoyed this collection of short stories! The author's voice is distinct and visceral. A lot of the stories are very open ended and built for discussion. There's absolutely something here for everyone, regardless of your typical genres.
These stories are quirky, filled with dark humor and unique world building, all while including important messaging and themes that give you a ton of food for thought. Some of the standouts to me were 'The Whisky Situation', 'Total Transparency', and 'This Time, Forever'.
Sidhe Wood - 5 stars
Ghillie's Mum - 4 stars
Dreaming in Quantum - 3 stars
Frozen - 5 stars
Shorty - 2 stars
Dead Men Don't Count - 3 stars
Grandma's Feast Day - 3 stars
Blanks - 5 stars
Mrs Sutherland's Arms - 3 stars
A Winter Crossing - 2 stars
Something or Nothing - 3 stars
Clockwork Men and Clockwork Dogs and Frogs - 4 stars
The Whisky Situation - 5 stars
Total Transparency - 5 stars
This Time, Forever - 5 stars
Phoenix - 5 stars
Overall: 4 stars
Extremely cool and superbly written collection of short stories that range from horror, mythology, speculative fiction, folklore and fantasy. Lynda Clark is an extremely versatile writer, able to create poignant moments as in ‘Ghillie’s Mum’, ‘Mrs Sunderland’s Arms’ and ‘Total Transparency’, perverse and darkly humorous tales such as ‘Shorty’ and ‘Grandma’s Feast Day’, and more philosophical stories like ‘Dreaming in Quantum’ and ‘Blanks’. With intriguing and provocative premises, unexpected twists, destabilising points of view, dark humour, sensibility, and a touch of weirdness, Dreaming in Quantum keeps you hooked and makes you lean in for more.
Ah. Perfect. Quantum Dreams are made of this and who are we to disagree. This was an absolutely excellent collection of genre hopping short fiction. From science fiction to literary scares and more to just plain oddness…this relatively slender collection provides a terrific span of speculative fiction done in the finest literary style.
Mostly I suppose it can all go under an umbrella of magic realism. And magic realism is tough to do, because it seems like an oxymoron of a genre, each of the components seemingly too contradictory for each other to amount to a cohesive total and yet, in a kismet style of attracting opposites, when it works it is magic indeed, a real, realistic kind. And the author seems to excel at level and balanced depiction of strikingly bizarre scenarios.
Clark plays with familiar genre concepts, but be it zombies, vampires, ghosts, shapeshifters, clones or something completely other, each take is completely original, singular and fresh. It’s all so imaginative, so clever, so fun…you won’t want to put the book down and since it clocks in at just under 200 pages you won’t have to. Just dive right in. The water is…welcomingly strange or strangely welcoming. And sure there may be fins, but with this book you’ll never know who they might belong to.
I loved this collection with a passion I normally reserve for fresh fruit and baked goods. Such an awesome, enormously enjoyable read. Recommended. Thanks Netgalley.
**A huge thank you to NetGalley and Fairlight Books for an eARC of this book in exchange for honest feedback!**
I have never read anything by Lynda Clark but was intrigued by the synopsis of this collection. The first two stories had me immediately thinking that this book wasn't my cup of tea. VERY short short stories that leaned more towards folklore/fae vibes than anything else.
Things turned around quickly as the stories took a more sci-fi turn. I found myself really enjoying the majority of the stories, and am pretty impressed with what felt like a lot of genre crossing in a short amount of time. It was a little bit jarring to go from story to story as they were all VERY different, but by picking this up and reading a tale or two at a time I didn't feel that it took anything away from my reading experience.
All in all, I was really impressed with a lot of the stories in this collection and will definitely check out more of Lynda Clark to see what else she has to say! This collection definitely gave some insight into her range and I can imagine that she has some other really interesting ideas. I recommend this book if you like quick reads, short story collections, stories that lean towards the ~weird~ and science fiction. Definitely interested to see what other people had to say about this one!
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Edited by Taylor Randolph
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