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Reviewed by Maria Victoria Beltran for Readers' Favorite
Obituaries & Other Lies by Ron Cooke is a thought-provoking collection of short stories. There are seventeen stories in this collection with titles like Conversations, Baseball Bum, Mississippi ’61, K2, Beebee, Soul Man, Enhanced Interrogation, and Ghost Stories. This absorbing collection brings together intriguing characters and unconventional situations. Conversations, the opening story, sets the tone with its unexpected ending while Baseball Bum and George are noticeable for their positive message. Ron Cooke takes his readers to various settings from Mississippi to Texas, New York, the Akela Flats, and a small town in the Midwest. Mississippi ’61 focuses on a familiar theme but the story is told from a unique perspective. Obituary: John Kenneth Wells is a tale that makes readers laugh and cry at the same time.
Ron Cooke’s Obituaries & Other Lies is a collection of short stories that are all unique in relation to their style, length, or theme. With unexpected twists and turns, his stories cover a wide range of social issues and life circumstances. Each story begins with a foregrounded title page containing writing ranging from a quote from Bob Dylan to what seems like musings from the author himself. This provides an introduction to the story before readers become immersed in the beautifully written and stirring stories Ron Cooke has evidently put his heart and soul into. Ultimately, Obituaries & Other Lies is a tight, spellbinding, witty, and wonderful collection, one of those books that will stay in our minds long after we finish reading the last page.