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Reviewed by Katelyn Hensel for Readers' Favorite
Somewhere Night Falls: Stories of Childhood Yesterday and Today is the debut book from Neil Stanners. It depicts the life and childhood of a young boy along the northern coast of Australia, and the bonds of three young children as they brave a magnificent quest together. It's also a devastating tale of a family who lose themselves in a tragic flood. Overall, these are stories of people. Realistic, yes...but true? Maybe. It certainly seems that way when crafted by the skilled pen of Mr. Stanners.
The author's intention of evoking nostalgia is very clear from the memorable and descriptive stories here. I'm sure that everyone can relate to having a crush on the beautiful boy or girl next door when they were little. I most definitely had many bonding adventures with my twin brother in our own backyard as we battled childhood demons and myths. I have a hard time trying to pick my favorite, so I won't. I liked how each story moved progressively forward throughout history, though changing POV the entire way.
Neil Stanners is clearly very invested in these stories. Whether from personal experience or simply just a knack for good writing, these flow with an imagination and heart that is rarely found. There is a simple, yet stark realism about the pieces that seems to both dismay and encourage all at once, if that makes any sense. Somewhere Night Falls is a beautiful and relevant title, as you can feel night quietly falling on the story that Neil writes all the way to the end. Bravo! A great showing in the somewhat transitional genre of historical combo realistic fiction.