MIDNIGHT STREET #4
Reviewed by Chris Cartwright
We open with Return of the Pikart Posse, a story by Rosanne Rabinowitz, which is about a tutor in medieval dissent, Evelyn, who is on a trip to Czechoslovakia to do research on the Adamites and meets a man who accompanies her on her tours to various places. Rabinowitz travels deep into the mind of Evelyn, describing her thoughts and emotions in depth.
I felt that there was too much about Evelyn's thoughts and not enough action. I found myself losing interest at times, but then again, Evelyn's imagination was entertaining enough to bring me back on track. The story is very well written with imagination, emotions and what few events there are, all falling into place. What I especially liked about this story is the little history lesson it contains about the Adamites, who were a very interesting group of people!
Interview with Rosanne Rabinowitz by Trevor Denyer
Denyer touches on Rabinowitz's writing technique and why she goes into a character's head so deeply. It is very interesting how she describes the reasons behind her writings. Denyer also asks about her views on how the world embraces women writers.
The Colour of Water by Rosanne Rabinowitz
A woman who, ridiculed as a child because of her pale skin, finds comfort in the woods as a child and as an adult. One day during her lunch break at work, comfort is not the only thing she finds in the woods. Her newfound treasure causes her to reminisce about her childhood, and leaves her in a dilemma of what to do with her discovery. This story really held my interest, and touched a soft place in my heart.
Estate of the Nation by Gary McMahon
Randall, a typical life insurance salesman, finds himself in quite a predicament. While trying to make a sale in an undesirable part of town, the lower low class section, he becomes intimidated by the “natives” and with good reason. The story eases you into the main scenario, and intensifies with each sentence. The author really pulls you into the story and you can't help but sympathize with the main character. A real “chair edge gripper”.
The October Girls by Scott Nicholson
I can remember when I was but a wee child, having an imaginary friend. Ellen has an imaginary friend too...or does she? Ellen and Margaret spend lots of time playing games and having fun together, running and playing hide and go seek. Ellen has to be careful though, or she will get in trouble with her Mother, playing with invisible people. Only crazy people do that. Nicholson does a spectacular job describing the notions of children, their fears and desires. The relationship of these two girls is that of best friends, through thick and thin. I felt like the author put us at the heart of the characters and made us really care for them, and that is what makes a story a success in my opinion.
Bleeding Heart by Jane Fell
People interpret religion in many different ways, and children must have the toughest time understanding the meaning behind all of it. In this story, the author writes about a young girl of 10 years, and her desires and how she goes about getting them. A very powerful tale, but some could have a little trouble with understanding the meaning, with the almost riddle like way in which the words were written. All in all it was a great story.
Coon Hunting In the Carolina Mountains Blindfolded – Michael Lohr Interviews Eric S. Brown
I am not familiar with Eric Brown's work, but after reading this interview you can be assured I will change that. Lohr questions Brown on his passion for the horror and SF genres and what motivates him. Also, Lohr asks about Brown's religious faith and how that affects his writings. A very enlightening interview!
The Machine of a Religious Man by Ralph Robert Moore
This is a very strong tale, which will take a hold of you at the beginning and grip until the end. It tells of a farmer and his family and the tragedies which fall upon them, and of the dedicated employee who does anything the farmer asks of him. I found this tale to be very emotional, yet creepy and violent. Moore puts us, the reader, right into the story as if we are driving it, and we are.
Highways by Paul Edwards
A tale about a man and woman and how their needs and desires affect their relationship. But there is also something more dramatic going on in the city, something that will make a significant change in everyone's life...in the world. This story put me in the mind of past segments of The Twilight Zone. The story had an interesting beginning which leads up to a disappointing ending, one that was rather vague in my opinion. I would liked to have had a better description of what was happening and why.
Lie-Down-Johnny by Andrew Roberts
A tale about the so called “village idiot”, you know the kind I speak of. Roberts tells a story of human cruelty. He tells of how people get the twisted truth or falsehood of what lies deep in a person's soul. He tells of how even friends can be cruel, and try to make it right. This is a story about childhood friendships, and one boy who is very different from the rest. This story is well worth the read, and will make you think twice about your judgments on others.
The Mad Hitchcock Escape by Ronald Jones
Jones writes a story about a writer's romantic woes with his girlfriend and how to escape them...and then he also has the problem of dealing with grandma, who has her own romantic woes, or thinks she does. This is a very well written tale with an unexpected outcome. I think you will enjoy this story. I did!
Midnight Street also contains a story by Lauren Halkon and poetry by Jill Morris. On the non-fiction side of things, there are some Small Press reviews, a Soapbox article by Robert Dando on The Prisoner TV series and a, possibly, spoof interview with Jim Morrison.
I really enjoyed reading this magazine, with plenty of fantastic tales and a couple of interesting interviews. Being an artist myself, I was especially intrigued to see what type of illustrations other artists, Russell Dickerson and A. C. Evans, were composing for the stories and liked their work very much. In conclusion, I think you will have a good time with this magazine and am looking forward to the next issue!
Midnight Street edited by Trevor Denyer, 7 Mount View, Church Lane West, Aldershot, Hampshire, GU11 3LN, England. A4, 52pp, £3.50/$8US/£6(9Euros)Europe/£6.50RoW or £9.50 for 3 issues/ $22US/£16(23Euros)Europe/£18RoW. All cheques etc payable to “T. DENYER” (online purchase details at website).
Website: - www.midnightstreet.co.uk
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