Saturday, May 17, 2014
Short Story Saturday: Mother Darkness from SCREAM QUEEN AND OTHER STORIES, Ed Gorman
"Mother Darkness" is the third story in Ed Gorman's new collection, SCREAM QUEEN and other STORIES. These are dark stories, maybe the darkest stories I have read by Ed. And each one takes you by surprise because his writing makes things feel ordinary right up until the moment they're not. The fluid writing and perfect amount of detail help to catapult you right into the action.
This one concerns a woman who checks out families getting government assistance. She is not a social worker--just there to monitor potential cases of fraud. But she hears a lot of sad stories, sees a lot of scary stuff and teeters between loathing the government who tries to deny the poor relief and the occasional cheating she sees going on.
But, unmarried and childless herself, she feels bad for the kids. And does something about it. Great story, great collection.