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Reviewed by Sarah Stuart for Readers' Favorite
Broken Shadows (Shadow Stories Book 2) is a collection of twelve short stories of varying lengths. The author, Radhika Mukherjee, recommends reading each with a break in between to allow time for assimilation of the meaning; they have a central thread - isolation and discovery - but each presents a very different aspect of her chosen theme. It encompasses isolation as a result of being alone, of a mind deprived, and of the soul, discovery of self, of pain, of loneliness, and the solitary, shadowy essence of one’s own identity. The stories go beyond gender and ethnicity, giving the whole collection a remarkable and rare universal appeal.
Broken Shadows (Shadow Stories Book 2) is like no other anthology I have ever read. Radhika Mukherjee has a very distinct voice that challenges the reader to think, to feel, to be. Intrigued by “Translucent,” I read on, slowly: it is necessary to pause between each narrative. Without contact with the internet, the world, even a rose is enviable; it has all that it needs, whilst “Pain” is more than agony. Suffering debilitating, disabling, pain hurts most in what it takes away from life: independence, the ability to survive alone. Each of these poetic tales has merit and readers will have their own favourites. Mine is “Cold”, the story of a daughter, wife, and mother no longer needed, abandoned to live on the streets. Appalling, frightening, and yet lit with the colour of autumn by sparks leaping from the flames of a blazing fire. I recommend Broken Shadows unreservedly.