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Ironwood Poacher: Almost there…

The cover is complete. Compliments to the software and design people at CreateSpace for a setup that allows a novice to make such an appropriate cover layout. Waiting for final page proofs before releasing it for publication. In the meantime, here’s a copy of the blurb that will accompany the book on the Amazon page. Too long at 150 words? I agree. Only the first 6 lines will show on the sales page, with an option to expand to the entire description. All comments and feedback welcome.

The old adage says: if you stand at New York’s Times Square long enough, the whole world will walk by. A short story deals with a tiny slice of life on a local scale but can, like a hologram, contain the big picture or illustrate universal themes. These ten stories have backgrounds that range from India to small-town America to Italy and even, in the case of Enigma, to outer space.
In December 2012, a violent incident on the outskirts of Delhi traumatized a nation and triggered an outpouring of soul searching. A young woman and her male companion were attacked in a bus. The man was beaten with a metal bar and left incapacitated while the girl was brutally raped and then seriously injured in a frenzy of bloodlust as an aftermath of lust. The case attracted wide media attention and struck a chord in the hearts of millions of urban middle class who were shocked that such a thing could happen to one of their own kind. When the girl died of her injuries thirteen days later, there was an outpouring of grief and violence nation-wide. The mass protests and agitation in urban centers throughout the country were an expression of anger and disbelief that the nation that nurtured Gandhi and non-violence could harbor individuals like these. Far more egregious is the petty tyranny of low-level officials in rural areas and the title story in this collection is a reflection of that.
The European Union is an unprecedented, brave and bold experiment by thirty-odd countries venturing into uncharted territory. Many economists have predicted that the experiment is doomed, and there is no shortage of possible reasons for failure. The Flood is a parable on the need for common myths to weld communities together.
Cassie is a child’s memory of adult marital stress in small-town America, while the two following stories Maestro Ladrini’s Villa and Heavy Duty are simple love stories, set in Italy and India respectively. In addition to India having an Italian-born queen (Sonia Gandhi), both countries have this in common. They are populated by hot-blooded, voluble and demonstrative peoples.
The Orbs of Celeris is the story of a dreamer, a Don Quixote who tilts, not at windmills, but at established mores. Ironically, the lance in this tale is a windmill.
There is some magic in the story of the eccentric Mrs. Macawley. It’s an author’s privilege to dissemble the truth that is stranger than fiction, and it is for the reader to decide what is truth and what is fiction in the story.
What if history repeats itself? Conception is a story of events leading to the second coming, or parousia, in the 21st century.
The Voyager I space probe apparently left the solar system sometime in August 2012, the first man-made object to do so. Around 150,000 people worldwide have reportedly volunteered to take a one-way trip to Mars, the theme of Enigma.
In A Night at the Taj Mahal a sixteen year old boy tries to find a shortcut to a University education and the secure employment that presumably comes with it.


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