Blue Summer Moon

An Anthology of Short Stories, Plays, and Poetry

Fiction - Anthology
216 Pages
Reviewed on 07/11/2014
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

E. L. Henry was born in Baltimore, Maryland. She has studied acting, dance, and voice while pursuing a career as an actress and singer in Boston, Massachusetts and New York, New York. She also studied art history and performed with a chorus when touring and traveling throughout Europe. She received her bachelor of arts (B.A.) in literature from Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio, and completed her master's while attending Goucher College Teacher's Institute in Maryland. She has taught English, creative writing, dance, and drama and has produced, directed, and staged numerous productions of her original plays found inside this anthology. Ms. Henry continues to teach and plans to soon release her first novel.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite

Blue Summer Moon: An Anthology of Short Stories, Plays, and Poetry by E. L. Henry is an exquisite collection that will stimulate readers with its whimsical, magical, and urban themes. The lyrical and musical quality of the poems, the urban and contemporary feel of the stories and plays all set the tone for dreaming and reiterate the fact that one can dream at any phase in life, irrespective of age. It covers the universal themes of love and hope, redemption and healing. The words, images, and scenes that run seamlessly throughout the collection make this book an amazing and exciting read.

I like the idea of a book with short stories, plays and poetry together because that, itself, offers variety to readers. The poems are metaphorical and rich in imagery. The short stories and plays are original, and the formal handling of the language makes them beautiful. The book will interest high school children, young adults, and adults alike because the style of writing is progressive, and the themes are universal. The characters in the plays, as well as the characters in the short stories, have been sketched with a clear level of expertise, including the author's different interpretations about life in general are evident in her work. The explosion of words and imagery in this book make it a worthwhile read. Life, the routines and the desires that come with it, have been captured well in this collection.

Faridah Nassozi

Blue Summer Moon by E.L. Henry is a collection of short stories, plays and poems about everyday life. E.L. Henry used these writings to bring to life different messages about day-to-day life, including love, God, family, work and everything in between. The book portrays different lives as seen through the author's eyes, and each new story/poem/play brings to life a different lifestyle or a different take on life. From talking about sweet love, inspiration through praising God, the fruits of investing in yourself though education and hard work, struggling to find inspiration, and surviving against the odds, you will find it all in this book.

Blue Summer Moon by E.L. Henry is a collection of the author's inspirational works about life with all its flaws and triumphs. Reading the book was both soothing and inspiring; it is beautifully written and the message is not exaggerated and yet so touching. The plays, poems and stories are full of drama, inspiration and humor, and deliver messages about everyday life, finding opportunities, taking chances, seizing the moment and survival in a fun way. I was especially touched by the play about young April and her fight to survive against the odds.

Each of the short stories, just like the plays and poems, touches on fresh topics, with a fresh plot and a fresh set of characters, giving you a unique look at a different lifestyle, keeping your reading experience interesting throughout the book. E.L. Henry's amazingly versatile writing skills come out clearly in the way she was able to comfortably switch between the writing styles and also keep the reader interested at all times. She did an amazing job of covering life from every angle,making Blue Summer Moon a book that celebrates life in totality - with all its beauty, challenges, struggles and triumphs.

Joy Hannabass

E.L. Henry’s Blue Summer Moon is more than I expected when I read the description of the book. I really enjoyed the anthology of short stories, plays and poems that Ms. Henry has given readers in her new book. In each section, there is a wide range of genres and topics that will make this book a great read for many people. Each selection will draw you into the story because of the unique and really nice writing style of the author. And the same theme of love, hope, transformation and the ongoing quest to understand the meaning of our existence can be seen throughout the book.

One of my favorites was the play, “Who’s at the Door.” The characters were fun and interesting, and I would love to see the old house with the ‘blue elephant’ picture on the wall and the other interesting scenes. It is a play that I would love to see acted out. But all of the plays would be really nice seen live. The poems were an interesting selection, again a good mixture of topics and genres. As I read the short stories I found the same writing style, development and themes. If I had to pick a favorite section I would say the plays, because I don’t read a lot of plays. As I read each of these, I could close my eyes and imagine the scene and even what the characters would look like and be wearing. And this is because of the vivid descriptions of each scene and the amazing details. If you are looking for an interesting and different book to read, you will find it in Blue Summer Moon by E.L. Henry, and I think you will enjoy it very much.

Guy Lucas

Excellent anthology! The stories and voice of E.L. Henry come shining through with really authentic detail and experiences! Her talent for writing short stories and poetry is undeniable! An excellent summer time read at the beach, or anytime! I can't wait for her next book!

Janice Bakari

Blue Summer Moon is a well developed anthology of short stories, plays, and poetry. The author, E. L. Henry, who appears to be new to the literary world, has crafted some intriguing stories that keep the reader glued to the page. She is a teacher of English and drama which shows in her writing. Her style of writing is very captivating! She provides the reader with vivid adjectives and descriptions which help the reader visualize the action of the story.

The title of the book is rather interesting. I checked the dictionary for the phrase blue moon and I found two definitions: 1) a very long period of time and 2) a rare occurrence of two full moons in a single month. I think the first definition is appropriate for E.L. Henry's anthology. The cover of the book matches the title. It is daylight but the moon is still visible. It has extended its stay. This title can be used to start interesting discussions. The structure of the book is quite appropriate. I like the way it is divided according to genres. I also like the challenging vocabulary and sentence structure. I especially enjoyed reading the short story, " For the Love of Harlan" and the play, "There's No Way Out." The characters remind me of people that I know and the themes are realistic.

I think Blue Summer Moon is an excellent anthology for individuals who are sixteen and older. I think it can be used as a supplementary textbook for grades ten through twelve. It can also be used with college students especially freshmen who need remediation lessons in reading and writing. Teachers can use this book to teach vocabulary and sentence structure. For the readers who are not in school, this book can be used for leisure reading.

This is an excellent book, E.L. Henry! On a scale of 1-5, I give it a 5. I look forward to reading your second book.