Saturday, May 11, 2019

Book Review: 'Dolph the Unicorn Killer & Other Stories' by Martin Lastrapes

Dolph the Unicorn Killer & Other Stories by Martin Lastrapes
One powerhouse of fun!

California author Martin Lastrapes earned his degrees in English and in Composition form Cal State San Bernardino and has won many impressive awards for his books – The Vampire and the Hunter Trilogy, Inside The Outside, and Dolph the Unicorn Killer & Other Stories. 

This being the first of Martin’s books this reader has discovered makes the journey into the author’s mind and wit and writing style an unforgettably rewarding experience. The topics of choice for these short stories border on incredible – so in touch with the realm of wild fantasy that the tales feel real! This author is gifted, not only in his selection of wild ideas, but also in the bracing style of his prose. At times naughty, at times even insightful, the short stories in this book are little masterworks of ingenuity. 

A sample: the first story is The Vampire & the Madman – ‘Las Vegas is a desert. And I’m a vampire. We’re a match made in heaven, friend, and until recently I never wanted to be anywhere else in the world. Locals know Las Vegas is a desert, as do a few tourists. But, if everything you know about Las Vegas comes form movies and television, then you probably think the entirety of my city is the Strip. Bright lights, resort hotels, celebrity chefs, gambling, casino, sex, and more. More, more, more.’ And it is this open invitation to enter Martin’s world that draws the reader in and keeps attention glued to the madness of the stories. 

Listing the titles of the stories of this volume does not begin to share the bounty, but a sampling hints at it – Invisible Cosmic Fingers, The Flying Game, The Revenge of City Marlow, Peppermint Breath (one very smart tale related by a kid in this age of iPads etc), and others, including of course the title tale of Dolph the Unicorn Killer. 

Wild fantasies and science fiction type stories can either plunk along to aid ennui, or they can soar – and soaring is what these shorties do. Martin Lastrapes is a first class scribe about whom we will most assuredly hear more. Highly recommended.




Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.






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