Sunday, December 23, 2018
Devil's Island, by Mensje van Keulen
To get the Full Disclosure bit out of the way: Akashic Press sent me this book for free, for which I am grateful. One of the editors, Josh Pachter, is a friend of mine. Now on to the main course.
And what a treat it is. The narrator is trying to be helpful to his friend, Jacob, who is becoming a real pain. Jacob's girlfriend has left him and he can't seem to get over it. On one bad night he even says "I'd sell [the devil] my soul if he'd make Martha come back to me."
Later that evening they are standing among the cigarette puffers outside a pub when a stranger comes out of the smoke and asks Jacob for a light. He says that he prefers the old-fashioned wooden matches called lucifers. "I like the smell of them, though, that momentary blast of sulfur..."
This is a story built on details, cleverly used.