K. Webster is one of these savants who can capture the nuisance, strength and fragility of the human condition. Who makes writing these multidimensional characters and stories look effortless. She doesn’t just take you out of your comfort zone, she sets fire to it and dances in the ashes with gleeful abandon. And as much as I need the rawness of the dark and twisty I also need these characters to get their Happily Ever After. The Happily Ever After is the slow comedown from my reading high, it’s the payoff for all the pain. So what happens when this addict hears that one of her favourite authors is releasing an anthology of incomplete stories? An entire book of words that never finish with “The End” Well she goes a little bit insane.
Every short story in B-sides and Rarities shows us another facet of K. Webster talent. Love, hate, depression, hope, madness, passion and revenge are all examined. Some vary from a tease of two pages, some to nearer forty. Each is a fantastic read, some are just a little taste of an interesting character, some are the beginnings of stories that will keep me up at night wondering what the hell happens next. Because that can’t be it, it just can’t be. B-sides and Rarities has a mix of characters and genres to satisfy every reader. I devoured this book, turning each page with an intense trepidation because what if that was all I was getting, what if that was where she leaves us hanging. For each new high there is a new low. If extreme reading was a sport then this book is the Olympics because every emotion was heightened with the uncertainty that this may be it for my time with these characters. Every characters and setting all fighting for space in my head and I’m sitting here telling myself that there has to be more because this glorious reading adventure can’t be over. So having finished B-sides and Rarities reminding myself that I knew the deal going in, I knew that I wouldn’t get my Happily Ever Afters, even though I would get my high. Knowing I’d probably go mad from all this endingless awesomeness. I thought I had prepared myself for the rush and then the fall. But you can’t prepare for K. Webster’s crazy genius and you know what? I’m not even going to try, I’m going with the crazy. Leave your sanity at the door and just let the crazy have it’s way with you, you’ll thank me later.
My B-sides and Rarities Playlist:
Beekeeper by Keaton Henson.
The Answer by Blue October.
Schizophrenia by Blue October.
Sour Times by Civil Wars.
This is Your Wilderness by Jozef Van Wissem.
Sqürl Whirlpool by Sea Wolf.
It’s All by Jono McCleery.