Friday, May 20, 2011
Messages - Short Stories for the Thoughtful by Marshall Frank
With multiple books of non-fiction and fiction to his name, it is a refreshing and delightful surprise to read Marshall Frank's newest book, Messages - Short Stories for the Thoughtful. In it, Frank's verbal storytelling abilities translate beautifully to the page.
At first glance, the stories appear to be charming vignettes meant only to entertain, and then the messages sink in and stick with you. Frank seamlessly conveys insights into human behavior and emotions that deliver, with depth, the intended meaning.
This is not your everyday book of short stories. To enhance them, Frank introduces each story with a famous quote. These nuggets add interest and clarity. Another Frankism is the addition of the Truth-O-Meter at the start of each story. This innovation tells the reader the "degree of truth in the tale." As a reader, I found myself referring back to the Truth-O-Meter while reading many of the stories.
Marshall Frank's eclectic life experiences and his ability to turn those experiences into stories have added a unique flavor to Messages. Topics range from stories drawn from Frank's vast experience in law enforcement to stories enhanced by his background in classical music. This diversity and depth assist him in eliciting the full spectrum of emotions from readers. Joy, sorrow, resignation, regret, anger, desire... they are all portrayed by characters we meet every day in our lives. I found the stories in this volume packed with believable, three-dimensional characters , not the plastic heroes and heroines so often found coming from the pens of many authors.
This is a great collection for those who love short stories. Through them, Frank has provided that perfect combination of entertainment and something to ponder.
Autographed copies of the book can be ordered at http://www.marshallfrank.com/