Treading the Uneven Road
by L. M. Brown

"We felt sorry for them then, children whose dreams had gone to ruin."

Nine stories make up this collection. While each one stands on its own, collectively they beguilingly intertwine to take readers through a number of years in multiple lives. The individuals chronicled here are all connected in one way or another to an Irish village. As their lives unfold, readers are given access to hidden intimacies, unbridled aspirations, acknowledged regrets, and more—virtually all the emotions that make life infinitely interesting yet ultimately impenetrable.

A wife finds her husband is having an affair. Neither the husband nor his lover is who she thought they were. Two brothers who start life doing everything together grow up and apart. One man’s pal dies much too young. One woman’s emotional abandonment by her husband drives her toward promiscuity and away from her daughter. A friend trying to help another misunderstands why her friend needs help and from whom. A man bent on revenge is unable to carry it out. Tragedy estranges a couple; time reunites them. A son visits a dying father and relives the shame they share. A man who feels life has passed him by finds hope.

The writing of these stories is as sharp as their content. Brown is an author who understands that what is implied is often more impactful than what is detailed. The white space between her words and lines speak volumes. They ignite the reader's imagination and create involvement that additional words would not. She has a red-hot feel for the characters she explores and lays bare their flesh and blood by the restrained power of her prose. Authentic, insightful, and compelling, this is a collection and an author to be noted.

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