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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
A Gathering of Broken Mirrors: Memories of New York Survivors is a work of collected fiction stories by author Anthony E. Shaw. The work is better suited to the mature adult reading audience due to references to violence and death and its complex subject matter. As the subtitle suggests, each of the stories revolves around a different time and place in New York City, featuring a wide variety of characters who undergo many trials. As they learn and grow, philosophical discussions emerge about the nature of fulfillment in life, the balance between good and evil, and the meaning of life, to name but a few.
Author Anthony E. Shaw delivers high-quality fiction in this wonderful collection of stories and showcases famous and anonymous faces with equal validity in the hubbub of one of the greatest cities in the world. I especially enjoyed the way that New York stayed at the heart of every tale: a consistent character in itself with a warm beating heart and all its jagged, shadowy edges at the same time. The dialogue was a big highlight for me, perfectly characterizing different time periods and people and keeping a consistent sense of tone for the city that never sleeps. If I had to pick a favorite from this plethora of remarkable stories, I’d say that Joey Alessandra in ‘Under The Arch’ really stayed with me, and I kept thinking about his decisions and actions long after that story was over. Overall, I would not hesitate to recommend A Gathering of Broken Mirrors to readers seeking acutely human-centered fiction with great literary merit and deep philosophical thinking attached.