I received this book for free from Publisher for review consideration, opinions expressed are 100% my own. This post contains affiliate links as indicated by an asterisk. Purchases from these links provides a small commission to me at no extra cost to you.Legacy: An Anthology Publication Date: Apr. 17, 2015
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Synopsis from Goodreads:
“What will you leave behind?
Long after we’ve left this world, our legacy remains. Or doesn’t. Or remains only in the minds of those who knew us, those whose lives we’ve touched. Those we’ve written to, or about.
If you had a choice, what mark would you leave? How should people remember you? Should they remember you?
Fourteen authors sat down during the month of January 2015, shut out distractions of the outside world and wrote about the subject. The resulting fiction and nonfiction stories fill the pages of Legacy: An Anthology. The book includes stories from Kristopher Jansma, winner of the 2014 Sherwood Anderson Award for Fiction, New York Times best-selling author Regina Calcaterra and Canadian best-selling author Marissa Stapley among others.
Within these pages, there is laughter, pride and hope. There is romance and rock and roll. Certain messages are eerie, while others bestow a sense of peace. The collection, through the discerning lens of each writer, runs the gamut of the human experience.”
How do you define legacy? What kind of legacy do hope to leave? If I had to write about “legacy” what kind of story would I tell? My legacy is so firmly rooted in my family that the legacy I think I leave would surely involve an abundance of love, kisses, tickles and good food! What else would you expect from a literal, planner-obsessed, list-making, numbers kind of person? Nothing too creative.
What I found so interesting about this anthology is how each author interpreted the concept of Legacy so differently. Each author spun their creative web into each story, reminding me how the seemingly small moments in our lives is what adds up to the legacy we leave behind. I particularly loved the nonfiction stories which were so powerful in such a short space.
Each book I read teaches me something whether it’s about a new place, a time or a little more about myself. I am an empathetic reader who loves character-driven novels, it is my emotional connection to the characters and their story that usually drives me to a 4 or 5 star rating. It is often hard for me to achieve that level of connection from short story anthologies. However, I was pleasantly surprised that several stories were stellar and fulfilled my needs as a reader.
It’s really hard to talk about short stories without giving spoilers away! I’ve gushed about Adria Cimino’s novel Paris Rue des Martyrs, and found her short story “Hope” compelling. I also love that these short stories give me a glimpse into the writing style of new-to-me authors so I can read their full novels too. In no particular order, some of my favorites were:
Sonny’s Wall by Paula Young Lee
How well do you know your neighbors? A quirky story surrounding a community and it’s somewhat eccentric characters. Eighty-year old Sonny insistent on building the wall for The Jerk, cranky and snoopy Maggie and the couple that lives next door that Maggie likes to spy on for reasons that become quite clear.
Apfelstrudel by Vicki Lesage
Can you find the truth about the past? A story involving an older sister and her younger twin siblings. Their connection is like any other typical siblings, the younger ones getting on the older one’s nerves. Their story is predictable but unfolds slowly and skillfully as older sister Edith discovers the truth.
Four Days Forever by J.J. Hensley
Can you change someone’s fate? This story starts with a bang and we travel backwards through time and the 4 days leading up to the beginning. The oldest son narrates, we learn about his life and how he’s trying to prevent his youngest brother from falling into the family business. Intriguing and suspensful, I enjoyed the way this story unfolded.
Forget Me Not by Stephanie Carroll
Can you avoid your own fate? Four sisters struggle with coming to terms with a family legend. Superstition and a little mystery surround this story about sisterhood, soul-searching and forgiveness, I found this story very unique and touching.
2 Kinds of Legacy by Jenny Milchman
What kind of legacy do your actions leave? One of my favorite stories in the book and I presume a nonfiction story. Jenny tells us about a single experience in 6th grade shaped the girl she was, the woman she becomes and impacted her path from therapist to writer. I could relate to Jenny’s experiences and loved her storytelling.
Forever Home by Regina Calcaterra
Can you make your legacy more meaningful? Another nonfiction read and another favorite of mine in this anthology. Regina gives us a glimpse into her experiences in the foster care system and the harsh reality for the older kids who age out of foster care without ever being adopted. This one made me want to cry. At 18 or 21 years old, these foster kids are technically old enough to live on their own but without that support from a loving parent that in whom they can confide their hopes and fears as they transition to adulthood. Regina’s story opened my eyes to these kids who need forever homes, because every person is someone’s child and deserves a loving parent. Where would I be without my loving family? Could I imagine my teenage son completely on his own with no one to turn to? I don’t even want to think about it. Regina’s work with the You Gotta Believe program to get forever parents for these foster kids and the messages from the kids themselves are inspiring.
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Blog Tour Schedule:
Be sure to stop by the blog tour schedule for more blogger reviews and an interview with each of the authors. I’ll be hosting interviews with authors Paula Young Lee and Jenny Milchman during the course of this tour so you’ll be hearing more from me and these talented ladies!
What legacy do you hope to leave? If you had to write a story about “legacy”, what would you write?
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