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Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite
For readers who don't like to get into long novels, "Paraskavedekatriaphobia" (fear of Friday the 13th) may be the ideal read. Author James Driscoll takes the reader on many journeys and most of them are dark journeys, journeys that most of us hope we will never encounter. In 'A Rainy Night', a man has car trouble and stumbles upon an out of the way gas station in which the unexpected occurs. In '714', two old men compete for knowledge and when the perpetually "one down" in intellect is finally correct, he seeks to set his always correct friend straight. 'Hoodlums' has a gambler experiencing a good luck streak and 'The Railing' has a man trying out new prescribed medication while having a paranormal experience. We then have a bank robber and a woman afraid to leave her house on Friday the 13th. And then, there is 16 year old Sally who appears to be a borderline personality punishing herself because of a boyfriend who jilted her. In 'Interference', a subway rider mistakenly attempts to assist someone who is threatened by an escaped psychopath, and lastly, we have a story about dead birds.
I liked the variation in the stories, even though some were predictable. The author does allow the reader a fascinating glimpse into the psyche of the main character, although most of the characters appear to be rather dark creatures. These stories will stay with you for a while as they do force human knowledge upon the reader in a predominantly non-obtrusive manner.