Hair Side, Flesh Side

Hair Side, Flesh Side - Helen Marshall The summary of this book seemed to promise a collection of disturbing or bizarre short horror stories that were all unique and rather unusual from others I may have read. These weren't horror stories at all, to say the least, nor were they that disturbing or bizarre or unusual.

If I had to tell a friend about this book and retell one of the short stories, the first one would be the only one that'd come to mind, the one about the girl who received a stuffed saint for her birthday. It was a strange story and something about it appealed to me, although it was rather confusing and I didn't understand the entire point of the story. It was memorable for me, and after reading it I hoped the rest would continue in the same manner; I was, alas, disappointed.

In many of these I enjoyed the details themselves, such as the one where people who imitated statues would become frozen in that position forever, and it was such a serious situation that fountains and statues all over had to be destroyed. The one about the woman's insides being the unfinished manuscript was another one I found to be interesting conceptually. It was the execution that let me down. Many, almost all the stories in fact, made me feel like there was something I missed after I finished them, like there was a hidden punch line or meaning that I failed to notice. I loved some of the ideas and details in this book, really, but even then I cannot recount all of them, or even a majority. The fell flat for me and the last story I even skimmed through, finding it difficult to get into the situation and character that was constructed.

I guess the problem is also that ingot my hopes up too high for this one. Maybe I'll give this one a chance in the near future, perhaps there really is something I missed and will be able to pick up again. I wouldn't say it's the author's fault in this case, merely a matter of personal taste. This wasn't what I expected and not as lively or terrifying as the synopsis promised me.