Old advertisements were created to be eye-catching when they were released, but when one sees them today, they may be even more noticeable. And downright weird.
Brigids Gate Press opened a submission call for short stories inspired by that weird, with all proceeds going to support the International Rescue Committee, a nonprofit organization devoted to helping refugee families in need around the globe, a crisis whose numbers continue grow exponentially every day.
Amazing Offer! features 24 short stories and poems inspired by a range of old advertisements. In some stories, the ad was more blatant, and others were more subtle, but all of them showed an incredible breadth of imagination, intrigue, and introspection. I came away from reading this collection awed by the amazing talent I had just read and still immersed in the emotional high I shared with these characters who, if they didn’t live in a supernatural world, could very well have been me in every sense.
These stories are fiction, but each one seemed to highlight a very human struggle within ourselves and the world around us, and I can honestly say that this is the first anthology I’ve read where every single story inside was an absolute delight.
Beautifully edited by S.D. Vassallo and Elle Turpitt, the cover design by Ellen Avigliano is also eye-catching and highlights the myriad of stories within.
This is my favorite anthology from Brigids Gate Press so far, and I will be purchasing a physical copy once it becomes available. The Kindle edition can now be purchased and read immediately from Amazon.
As mentioned previously, all proceeds go to support the International Rescue Committee. It is the best and most impactful $4.99 you will spend this year!
Ancient Greek tales are dominated by males: male heroes, male motives, male accomplishments and desires. In 2021, the founders of Brigids Gate Press set out to change things up and opened a submission call for new perspectives on these beloved tales: the untold perspectives, the hidden truths of the myths, the silenced voices of time immemorial. The other side of the story.
Musings of the Muses is an anthology of Ancient Greek mythology stories retold from her perspective: The women who were always present but never allowed to speak to history, never allowed to defend their name against the male hero; sentenced to be judged for eternity through the eyes of the patriarchy. Brigids Gate set out to give them their voice.
Disclaimer: I have a vested interest in this anthology, as my short story “Before Gods” is included in its publication. However, I know a great story (or collection of stories) when I read it and I’m confident that you will find my honest ARC review of Musings of the Muses to be trustworthy and accurate.
There are 65 stories included in Musings. Some are more in the classical style, and some have been reimagined in a modern setting with modern concepts and technology. There is a healthy dose of poetry as well, and a wide range of Greek cast members, from Medusa, to Titans, to Olympians, to Monsters. Charybdis and Scylla even featured in the story “Lover’s Quarrel,” by Georgia Cook, which I found fascinating. I was also delighted to read a clever Hera story in “Respectfully Yours, Bridezilla,” by T.L. Beeding. I’ve always felt Hera’s reasons for hunting down Zeus’ illegitimate children were presented a bit poorly, so I found her story in Musings to be exceptionally creative and satisfying. Another one of my favorites was “Thinking Outside the Box,” by Dominick Cancilla, a parody of the horrors inside Pandora’s box that was delightful and crafty.
As with all anthologies, there were some stories that didn’t connect with me as well as others, but every story delivers compelling characters, well-developed arcs, and a fresh female perspective that is sometimes warm, and sometimes chilling. Heather and Steve at Brigids Gate Press have an eye for great stories, and there are so many assembled here. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with this purchase.
My one critique is that it isn’t long enough. Which is odd considering there are 65 stories and 422 pages, but there are some personal favorite heroines in Greek mythology which did not have a retelling in this anthology, and that was a bit disappointing. My hope for the future is that Brigids Gate will open a submissions call for a Vol. 2 sometime in the future.
A Quaint and Curious Volume of Gothic Tales is a short story anthology published by Brigid’s Gate Press and includes 24 delightful stories embodying the gothic themes of mystery, horror, and gloom with plenty of magic, mythology, and otherworldly elements mixed in.
This collection is professionally compiled and organized, with cover art by Elizabeth Leggett that is a perfect swirl of enchanting and creepy, an excellent Foreward by Alex Woodroe, and a charming Introduction by Stephanie Ellis.
The stories are written by both new and established authors, and there is a story (or two, or three, or more) that everyone will enjoy and will want to read again. As with all anthologies, some stories moved me more deeply than others, but all of them had their own unique touch of intrigue and dread that kept me engrossed in the narrative and furiously turning the pages.
I will be acquiring a physical copy once it is available for purchase on Amazon. These stories are perfect to squeeze into that 5-15 minute window where escape from the real world of doom and gloom is a must just to make it through the day.
I’ll be keeping up with Brigid’s Gate Press, this anthology shows that they have an eye for quality and creativity that promises more great stories in their future publications.