Short story collections
by David Gardiner

I have two short story collections presently in print, both published by Merilang Press in Wales, and each containing twenty-five of my stories. The first one, The Rainbow Man and Other Stories, was originally published by the small press publisher bluechrome (lower case 'b' intentional) which is no longer trading, but it was kindly re-issued, together with the newer volume The Other End of the Rainbow by Merilang, and both are now available again from Amazon, The Book Depository and all the usual on-line bookstores, or signed copies can be purchased from this website by clicking on the links provided.
        I have also acted as editor for the Gold Dust Magazine 'best of' anthology Solid Gold, which contains twenty-three of the best stories to appear in the literary magazine Gold Dust over a five year period. I think it's one of the best anthologies out there and excellent value at just £4.50 plus postage from Lulu.com
        If you read one of my collections please email me and let me know what you thought of it. All feedback, good or bad, is most welcome and extremely useful to any writer.




The Other End of the Rainbow cover

The Other End of the Rainbow

The second Rainbow Man collection containing 25 of my newest stories is now available from all on-line bookstores, or you can order your copy here and I will be happy to sign it for you. If you live in the UK and have a PayPal account please click on the button below and follow the instructions. I am charging £7 only per copy, which includes inland postage. Don't forget to include your postal address in the 'message' section of the PayPal order form.


If you live outside the UK please e-mail me so that I can determine how much the postage will cost to your particular location. The international purchase price from this website is £6 equivalent in your local currency plus postage (pro rata) to anywhere in the world. Postage within the UK is discounted to £1 only.

Review of The Other End of the Rainbow
by Jason Makansi The Short Review

" Spaces don’t look so big at night. The scale of the world becomes more comfortable.…"

The Rainbow Man, a mythical story-telling gadfly, at once the court jester, town drunk, and muttering old sage, introduces each story in this artful collection, where a sense of dignity seems to permeate the space around the words, and the circus of colorful characters that speak them. We're introduced to a psychological therapist who decides you, dear reader, are his next "chat up," a strange tenant who just seems to start talking to you about how "normal" he isn't, and a man who talks to you about his comatose wife. No, wait. He's talking to his comatose wife!
        A multi-layered, sophisticated story, Sam, one of the longer ones of the collection, deals with recovery from a serious head injury, and the uncovering of two people from the same brain. Through this story, the reader embarks on a journey through the "firings of tiny brain cells and the pattern of their interconnection."
        Gardiner uses the word parable to describe his stories. Indeed, Man the Pumps! which, lo and behold, even begins with "Once upon a time," is a thinly veiled send-up of wayward faith and terrorism perpetrated in the name of religion, mostly pointing at radical Islam. But it works. The Claddagh Brooch features a man regretting late in life not acting on a crush at work. The day he finally gets up the nerve to express his feelings is the day she leaves their place of work to get married. Moral of this parable: Time is short; don't waste it. Again, simple, almost child-like, but it works.
        Even in a rather gruesome story, New Gloves, there's a dignity to the dialogue as one character terrorizes another with the threat of an infectious disease in retaliation for being accosted. You won't believe what the gloves cover up. At the other end of the spectrum is Cambridge, one of those stories where nothing really happens, but the situation keeps you reading along. In this case, a man and a woman, both in other relationships, meet each year at a music festival with the only rule that they must tell each other the truth. Their mutual understanding and care can't be compromised even by the fact that they tell each other about their other affairs and trysts, too. Again, there's a dignity to the story, the way it makes us yearn for mutual respect, though we know this ideal relationship doesn't come close to reflecting the messiness of real life, and rampant infidelity is the norm for this "couple." New Gloves and Cambridge certainly demonstrate Gardiner's range with his material.
        My personal favorite, Light of the World, harkens back to Twain and the traveling hucksters making a buck off that "old time religion". Reverend Fishbone offers salvation and healing, for a price, but the reader gets an insidious message about the relativity of evil.
        "'Folks either help themselves or nobody helps them. Everything just depends on what you've got going on in here.' He tapped his head. 'There ain't nothing out there. Just the dark.'"
        The last line is biblical in modern day proportion: "Artificial light manufactured by mankind to hold the darkness of the world at bay." In the end, Rainbow Man delivers. Dignified, simply told tales, wise beyond their words.

Read The Short Review's Author Interview with yours truly

When you've read the book please e-mail me and let me know what you think of it.

Have a look at the November 2008 launch of the book (at The Big Green Bookshop, Wood Green) on YouTube. There were lots of other readers present and also music sets from local singer/songwriters Rick Hayter and Tim West.







Rainbow Man cover

The Rainbow Man and Other Stories

SECOND EDITION (CONTAINING TWO EXTRA STORIES) PUBLISHED JUNE 2010 BY MERILANG PRESS at £7.99
Can be ordered RIGHT NOW from:

AMAZON UK

AMAZON.COM

THE BOOK DEPOSITORY (free postage worldwide)


or simply buy it now from this website using PayPal for £7.00 only, inclusive of inland postage. Let me know if you would like it signed or any special dedication, and don't forget to include your postal address in the 'message' section of the PayPal order form.



If you live abroad please e-mail me so that I can determine how much the postage will cost to your particular location. The international purchase price from this website is £6 equivalent in your local currency plus postage (pro rata) to anywhere in the world. Postage within the UK is discounted to £1 only.

When you've read the book please e-mail me and let me know what you think of it.


Reviews of The Rainbow Man (first edition, 2003)

The stories themselves are a joy. They are very much that very thing, short stories, which now tend to be disappearing in a welter of "Art". ...Gardiner has the talent to depict character successfully in few words and work that character logically in his given setting. ...He creates scenes and characters which work and which make you think.

Review by Chris Williams
Tregolwyn Book Reviews

You pick up this book with its charming exterior thinking you are going read a collection of equally charming short stories, seasoned perhaps with a little grit to raise it above the tame, but what you actually get are jawdropping vignettes of the sort of lives only a writer of David's calibre could relate with such vivid and at times disturbing realism and all this whilst at the same time managing to avoiding the usual, the jaded and the hackneyed to ensnare your attention. Nothing is as it seems and the more mundane the surface, the more layers there appear to be; we are talking about a true literary onion here, multi-layered and quite able to bring tears to your eyes.

Binnacle Press Book of the Month Review

...without exception all twenty-three of the stories, exploring life both familiar and unfamiliar, leave the reader with something to think about, and linger in the mind long after the final page is turned.

The Irish Emigrant
BookView Ireland :: November, 2003 :: Issue No.100

James Joyce meets Ray Bradbury in David Gardiner’s collection of tales wrapped in the imaginings of children who hear a Cassandra/Wandering Jew-type sage mutter such things as “Ye know the trouble with youse northerners, your memories is too bloody long!”

From the secretly vengeful ex-nun propitiating a religious fraud on a smugly progressive church in “Immaculata” to the lovelorn man and woman in “Blind Date,” each thinking the other is too good for them, Gardiner’s characters face the loneliness of illusion and the loneliness of truth. As the war criminal of “Letting Go” asks, “That’s all you want of me? The truth? A small thing like that?”

MyShelf.com

READ THE FULL TEXT OF ALL REVIEWS HERE


Gold Dust Magazine Solid Gold anthology

Solid Gold Cover

Twenty-three of the best short stories to appear in Gold Dust magazine in the first five years of its existence, edited by and with an introduction from your's truly. This is one of the finest short story anthologies available in the UK, and at the ludicrous price of £4.50 plus postage from Lulu.com. Definitely not to be missed by short story lovers of all tastes and ages. Simply the cream of the cream of the last few years' new short fiction.




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