David Jordan's The Echoing Green and Other Stories was published in October 2019.

About David Jordan:

David Jordan lives in Cork, Ireland, where he was born and bred. He has an MA in English. He loves music, coffee and peace.

Click here to visit his official website.

About The Echoing Green and Other Stories:

From a quest to find the Starbucks mermaid, to a god’s dream of saving the planet, this collection of short stories has an abundance of imagination as well as ingenuity and style. In serene and sparkling prose, David Jordan will introduce you to places and people that you have never encountered before, with a unique voice and vision that will satisfy story lovers everywhere.

REVIEW: THE ECHOING GREEN AND OTHER STORIES BY DAVID JORDAN

David Jordan's The Echoing Green and Other Stories is an intriguing combination of modern fantasy, urban fantasy and mythological elements. I was pleasantly surprised by this collection and found it fascinating, because the stories are imaginative and inventive, not to mention original.

The Echoing Green and Other Stories is a relatively quick and highly enjoyable read. It can easily be read in one sitting, because it's difficult to put it down. I'm sure that many readers will want to visit this collection again after they've finished reading it.

This collection contains stories in which modern settings and mythological elements blend with ease. Although the stories are entertaining and easy to read, it's possible to find traces of psychological depth and underlying wisdom in them. Some of the stories also have a dash of humour.

This collection contains the following stories:

- The River
- The Echoing Green
- Dreamer's Eve
- Silver Machine
- Gods and Monsters
- John Frost and the Angel
- The Middleman
- Home

I was pleased with all of these stories and found them captivating. They are modern fairy tales for adult readers who want to read something out of the ordinary.

It's great that the author uses elements of Irish and Celtic mythology in his stories, because it brings plenty of freshness to them. These elements will appeal to everybody who has ever read mythological stories and has knowledge about mythology, because the author's approach to them is inventive.

There's something about these stories that faintly reminds me of stories written by Neil Gaiman and novels by Tej Turner. These stories also have a touch of the fantastical side of Clive Barker in them. Just like Gaiman, Turner and Barker, the author easily evokes a sense of wonder with his prose and dares to modernise certain things in a stylistic way. He is - of course - totally different kind of a wordsmith than these authors, but his stories are in certain ways reminiscent of these authors.

Here's more information and my thoughts about the stories:

The River:

- This opening story tells about a young man who sits by the river and experiences something strange.
- I liked the author's approach to supernatural elements in this story, because his writing feels effortless and light.
- I also enjoyed reading about what the author wrote about the man's life and feelings.

The Echoing Green:

- A strong story about Jonathan Corbett who who finds himself awake, but dreaming (he's fully awake in a dream). He decides to find coffee in the dream and begins to search for a Starbucks mermaid.
- I found the concept of being awake in a dream fascinating, because the author writes fluently about the protagonist's unusual situation.
- This story has an intriguingly surreal feel to it, because the protagonist wanders in the dream and experiences strange things.

Dreamer's Eve:

- In this story, a man meets a fairy called Bab in the woods and begins to tell her stories.
- I liked what the author wrote about the trees and how they were a gateway between worlds.
- It was interesting to read about Bab, because she loved stories and wanted the man to tell them to her.

Silver Machine:

- In this story, Nuada is asked to deal with a monster who has been coming to the pub.
- I found this story fascinating, because it features Tuatha Dé Danann and the Fomorians, who are supernatural races in Irish mythology. Because I've been fascinated by Irish mythology for a long time, it was interesting for me to read about the characters, because I recognised many of their names.

Gods and Monsters:

- An intriguing story about Cian and Barbara, who is preparing herself for the coming war between "gods" and "monsters".
- This is a fascinating and original story featuring Irish mythology.
- I liked the author's vision of the relationship between Cian and Barbara, because they're both special and different from human beings.

John Frost and the Angel:

- A story about Murph, who hears that an angel is wandering in the city.
- In this story, the author writes fluently about Murph and his life. In my opinion, the author manages to catch of a glimpse of life seen through the eyes of a bum in a mesmerising way.
- This is one of the strongest stories in this collection.

The Middleman:

- In this story, a writer called Martin has moved to a new house and suffers from a bad writer's block. Suddenly, he is asked to become the village's shaman, because the village desperately needs a shaman.
- The author tackles with an interesting dilemma in this story, because certain things have a heavy price.
- This is an excellent and compelling story that will surely stick to the reader's mind.

Home:

- In this compelling story, the horned god Cernunnos makes a public speech concerning environmental things and global warming. Soon, things go wrong and something bad happens...
- I like the author's way of writing about Cernunnos and how he feels about being exposed to the public.
- This is an excellent and fitting finale to this collection.

The characters in these stories are interesting. The author writes well about them and how they are drawn towards strange beings and experience various things. The characters' way of reacting to supernatural things is handled well.

The author's prose is clear and surprisingly elegant. I like his writing style, because he has his own voice and he writes about the happenings in a light and effortless way.

David Jordan's The Echoing Green and Other Stories is a prime example of how good and inventive contemporary fantasy fiction can be at its best, because it is filled with captivating and original stories. I sincerely hope that readers will find this collection and won't hesitate to delve wholeheartedly into its fantastical contents, because it's something different and entertaining.

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