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63 Short stories and 7 poems. 345 pages.
Bittersweet Revenge is a collection of Bob Brown’s writings. His distinctive voice resonates throughout the stories, yet each tale is unique. They encompass contemporary and historical fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.
The stories are intended for light reading and a few may be too farfetched for real life—or are they? In Queen for a Day Swindell didn’t say, “I’m here to steal your wife,” but that is what he meant. Mission in Trouble is a nonfiction mystery about Captain Hall, a North Pole explorer who died and was buried in Greenland in 1871 after claiming the ship’s doctor had poisoned him. Sinister humor dominates A Murder Misery when Don murders his business partner with ironic consequences. But humor is absent in Moon Shadows, a bleak tragedy about Molly, a nineteenth century prairie woman, who must bury her best friend in the middle of a cheerless moonlit night.
Each story in Bittersweet Revenge is a quick read with a beginning, middle, and end, ideal for a coffee break, a wait at a doctor’s office, or a lazy afternoon in a hammock.
QUEEN FOR A DAY
Swindell didn’t tell Mealy, “I’m here to steal your wife.” What he said was more evasive and shrewdly phrased, but still, what he meant was, “I’m here to steal your wife.”
Call me Hoss. I’ll hate you for it, but no man has a say in picking his nickname. Mamma named me Bernard, but fat lot of good that does.
I never thought of myself as ugly until I entered the first grade. At recess Vernon Stone jerked away my cap and taunted me to get it back. In full view of all my classmates; I was embarrassed, angry, and humiliated. I chased him, but he was too quick and my embarrassment grew unbearable. They were laughing; everyone was laughing. Becky Patton was laughing. Tony Simmons was laughing.