Bite-Sized Reading | SELF-esteem

Sometimes an author can capture an audience in only a few dozen pages. All available through LJ’s SELF-e Select, these novellas manage to pack a big punch with limited word counts.

Keels, Nadine C. The “She” Stands Alone. CreateSpace: Amazon. 2015. 48p. ebk. ISBN 9781311297778. contemporary ROMANCE
Having experienced rejection one too many times, Sheridan Jones laments—in painfully relatable prose—being the lone single in a group of happily coupled friends. Her new plan:  to date herself. Keels offers up a short and sweet take on loving yourself before letting others do the same.

Lourey, Jessica. Seven Daughters. Toadhouse. 2014. 101p. ebk ISBN N/A. FANTASY
Candy shop owner Helena Catalain, whose confections come with a touch of magic, fights to keep her business afloat when an old family rivalry resurfaces. This companion volume to Lourey’s novel Catalain Book of Secrets delivers a fast read that gives deeper history to the enchanting Catalains and their sleepy town.

March, Petra. All the Skies I Will Not See. Petra F. Bagnardi. (Touch of Cinnamon, Bk. 2). 2015. 35p. ebk. ISBN 9781311374721. F
Something terrible has happened to 21-year-old David Medwin, and as he lies dying, he reflects on the scope of his life—in particular, the realization of his sexuality. As the story ticks down David’s final days, hours, and minutes, readers will feel desperate yet helpless to intervene.

Smith, Cherita. Project Snow: A Science Fiction Fairy Tale. Pronoun. 2016. 36p. ebk. ISBN 9781536526332. SF
Amara, a genetically engineered child, is looking forward to the freedom that turning 16 will bring. She’ll finally be released from quarantine and allowed to begin a new life as an immune person. That is, until the queen needs a new heart. A blend of sf and fractured fairy tale, this gorgeous novella begs for an expanded telling of the fascinating world Smith has created.

Snider, Sara C. The Forgotten Web. Double Beast. 2016. 67p. ebk. ISBN 9789187657030. FANTASY
Robin becomes entangled in a strange realm when he meets Fauwen, a mysterious weaver begins to unravel his very existence. Snider’s hauntingly beautiful tale sees Robin doing whatever necessary to reconstruct his life.

St. Clair, Anthony. The Martini of Destiny. Rucksack. (Rucksack Universe). 2013. 84p. ebk. ISBN 9781940119014. FANTASY 
Fans of quirky fantasy will be delighted by the first title in the “Rucksack Universe” canon, which follows jaded bartender Jake, directionless pub patron Declan, and the martini that changes them both. This quick story is filled with the wit, whimsy, and imbibing that define St. Clair’s series.

Kate DiGirolomo About Kate DiGirolomo

Kate DiGirolomo is the SELF-e Community Coordinator at Library Journal. She received her Master's degree in Library and Information Science at Pratt Institute. Follow her on Twitter @KateDiGirolomo.

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