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Short Story Collection
Jackie Kay, Scottish Makar, playwright and author on story 'Texan Condoms':
"Kevin Crowe's utterly absorbing story moves between the late seventies and today, beginning with 'Yet another World AIDS Day service'."
Brendan Gisby, Editor and Author:
"I’m a strong advocate of the short story as a literary form. Indeed, I’ve penned many of them, I’ve published seven collections of them, and for eight years I ran McStorytellers, a website dedicated to showcasing the work of Scottish-connected short story writers, including the work of the author. When I read these latest tales of his, I truly wished that McStorytellers was still operating so that I could have had the pleasure of publishing them on the site.
As a gay man “of a certain age”, Kevin Crowe knows a lot about the cruelties and injustices that have been and continue to be inflicted by this world. Those cruelties and injustices are reflected in many of the stories. There’s blatant intolerance in No Home In This World (the aptly chosen title of the collection); abject despair in The Roots of Their Raising; a terrible miscarriage of justice in No Smoke Without Fire?; and overwhelming sadness in Texan Condoms. There are no happy endings in these stories.
But it’s not all bleakness. We see the world redeeming itself in Moonlight Sonata and having the last laugh in The Dinner.
All in all, a fine collection that is worthy of your attention."
- No Smoke Without Fire
“Don't worry,” Iain said, “I'm sure it's all a horrible mistake and I'll be home soon.” With all the time in the world, yet no time at all, Ian contemplates the events that followed that disastrous day. As the thread unravels, Ian’s life is changed forever, but is there more to uncover than what there may seem?
- The Roots of Their Raising
This twisted tale of loneliness and bitter irony focuses on the relationship of two people united by broken familial backgrounds. The comfort and salvation they offer each other is ultimately their undoing, as their hopes and vulnerabilities are shattered in a cruel twist.
- No Home in this World
A gay refugee’s failed asylum claim and subsequent persecution forces us to confront the harsh reality of indifferent bureaucracy. Back in his home country he faces oppression, corruption and hypocrisy, whilst in Scotland he is treated as an inconvenience; something to be processed. In the face of such injustice, Seamus Heaney’s expression “no such thing as innocent by-standing” looms large.
- Texan Condoms
The harsh Texan sun beats as one British man’s journey to the US becomes an exploration of sexuality, identity and the vagaries of chance. His reminiscences of times past act as a paean to lost friends and the indiscriminate pain of the 1980s AIDs pandemic. Like the rattlesnake in the Texan hills, beauty, passion and danger lurk side by side.
- Moonlight Sonata
The death of a soldier’s wife in the WW2 bombing of Coventry leaves one man in a state of bitter grief and isolation. His love for music, piano and life is destroyed by the enormous loss that he suffers. Amidst the ashes of his past, a new hope for love and freedom is found.
- The Dinner
A slave narrates his master’s comic inability to adjust to the rapidly changing social mores of 19th century England. The farcical narcissism of the slave owner is contrasted with the quiet intelligence of our protagonist and the profundity of his desire for freedom. The idiocy of injustice is laid bare.