Sunday, November 17, 2013

Othello Revised, by Denise Middlebrooks

"Othello Revised," by Denise Middlebrooks, in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, December 2013.

One big problem with little stories is they don't leave much room for us critics to pontificate and display our wisdom.  Last week I talked about my philosophy concerning flash fiction.  This week we aren't dealing with a flash, but definitely a short tale.

And it is one I like a lot.  In fact, I probably care for it more than most people would, for two reasons.  First, I find myself in a circumstance not too far removed from the protagonist, and second, the story, Middlebrooks' first, reminds me of a certain piece by James Thurber, one of my heroes.

The narrator has just written a mystery novel and his wife recommends he takes it to a professional editor.  The editor turns out to be an interesting person, a real estate agent who reinvented herself in the recession, and she has some fascinating suggestions about the book.  Or what she thinks is the book.

And there we have to stop.  Go read the story.  It's November and you deserve a treat.


  1. I remember the Thurber's "MacBeth Murder Mystery." And I liked this one a lot, too.

  2. Terrie Moran here. Thiswas a very entertaining debut. Nice choice.