Tales of Eve edited by Mhairi Simpson

This book has a deceptive cover by Daniele Serra. At first glance it looks like a simple impressionist image of a woman. It isn’t until you look at it a bit longer you start to notice things. Minor things like the head of a man swinging from her hand. I then spent a while wondering exactly why her other hand was up where it was.  I could go on but I’d rather you looked yourself. Is it a defensive posture? Is she trying to hide her face. From something that at first glance did not impress me at all this has become a cover that I want to position on my bookshelf with more than just the spine showing.

The introduction of this book is quite interesting. It talks about turning the weird science perfect woman creation being turned upside down and being about women. This got me thinking. This whole idea goes back to Mary Shelley and although Frankenstein was a male character it isn’t too much of a stretch to imagine that it was at least partly the author’s idea of creating the ideal man. It makes you wonder why there haven’t been more stories like these.

Every story in this anthology is completely different from the one before and after it, and yet somehow they link together nicely across the styles. I do have some clear favourites. Ellie Danger, Girl Daredevil by Alisdair Stuart is hard to describe. Ellie seems to be some kind of strange mix of Black Widow from the Avengers, a female Dr Who and Buffy. You need to go read it. Father’s Day by Francesca Terminello is so subtle and thought provoking that it makes you stop at the end and just think about life and how different things can be. My favourite story in this anthology was described by the editor as making her weep. Unravel by Ren Warom is a downward spiral that really does provoke an emotional response in the reader. I’d buy this book just for this story. It has a level of anguish and level of pain that is not very common.

I really enjoyed this book and at under £4 for the ebook it is worth missing a coffee and cake for.




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