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Reviewed by Sarah Stuart for Readers' Favorite
Amidst the Chilling Storm, at 246 pages, is one of the longest poetry books I have come across in many years of enjoying the art. The subject matter of the verses is manifold, ranging from the personal heartbreak of “Tears That We Hide” to an assessment of “Zen”, but the arrangement of them is divertingly simple. They occur in alphabetical order. Together, the collection comprises freestyle, rhyme, and occasionally a clever mixture of both. Neither does Mr. Karan shy away from using deliberately complicated language: indeed, made-up words. “Retaliatory Ruthlessness” contains such phrases as “waftly frogmarching hyperbolic” amongst others. Illustrations, sketches drawn in bold black lines, appear intermittently throughout. Amidst the Chilling Storm by Frank Karan is a book for lovers of poetry to treasure.
I was intrigued by the first poem, “Abyss Atlas” and totally hooked when I reached “Amidst the Chilling Storm”. I absolutely loved the illustrations, but it was only on the second reading that I stopped to study and truly appreciate them. Frank Karan’s poetry drew me on until I reached the end. Do I know the man behind the verses? Perhaps – perhaps not. He’s questioning, often cynically right, religious… He must be to have written “Peace on Earth” which ends with the prayer for peace to “reign n‘stay”. I like him for his gift of poetry to a thoughtless, often unkind, world. Amidst the Chilling Storm by Frank Karan is a book that deserves a place in everyone’s heart, and is safe on their bedside cabinet. Buy a second copy for the coffee table.