Thursday, November 11, 2010

Review - "Old Wives' Tale"

Old Wives' Tale by Sommer Marsden

I don’t think I’ll surprise anyone when I say I loved this little tale. I’m partial to a bit of werewolf action, more than any other paranorm, and the only possible disappointment here is the length (that’s what she said). At under 4,000 words, I found I flew through this story, thanks in no small part to Ms. Marsden’s crackling prose (which I’m also unashamedly partial to).

Gloria, our “stubborn, mouthy” heroine, is almost ADHD in her behaviour. She needles our Lycan hero, Gavin, for almost the entire story, first angrily, then far more saucily. Throughout the encounter Gavin seems to struggle with the twin desires to mate and maul. He finds a middle ground which works very well for both characters.

In my usual overthinking way, I found “Old Wives’ Tale” to be an allegory for the ongoing parry-and-thrust of the heterosexual relationship. Gloria’s all words and tease, and she perplexes the Lycan man at every turn. Gavin is all intensity and strength, and when his patience evaporates, he’s all action.

As I’ve found in all Ms. Marsden’s work, there are unusual word choices which control the imagery and flow of the story far more than a common word would: the way Gloria “slung” her torso, the “surprises” that course through her body, even down to her wicked descriptions of the wedgie she’s given herself.

As I said earlier, my only disappointment is that I finished so quickly (again, that’s what she said). On the other hand, what else would a werewolf story be, but…snappy!


Sommer Marsden said...

oh, thanks for this! glad you liked it. and have to say loved seeing the tags:

Sex, Sommer Marsden, tease...


Willsin Rowe said...

Thanks for writing it. I do like a bit of were on the side...

And the's almost Freudian...