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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Teeth & Crumpets: A Florilegium is a work of fiction in the anthology, literary, and slice-of-life subgenres. It is best suited to the general adult reading audience and was penned by author Joel Shoemaker. In this collection of interesting and original short stories, the author takes the concept of the teeth in the human mouth in order to categorize his stories, producing a quirky and insightful collection that can be read in any order. From missing people to heartache, loss, fear, the little things in life, and, of course, teeth, the varied subject matter builds a picture of different attitudes, experiences, and ideas that cover a wide cross-section of humanity.
Author Joel Shoemaker has produced a collection that shows the literary side of fiction at its absolute best. There is both simplicity and complexity within Shoemaker’s storytelling that makes it instantly readable and compelling, taking you on what feels like a conversational narrative journey much of the time, but suddenly has moments of poetic beauty in its wordplay. There are jolts of humor and sadness, and interview format style stories that will have you biting your nails and following the dialogue as tensely as if you were watching it play out right in front of you. The author may claim that this book is devoid of wisdom, but I found that there was much poignancy to it and a lot to be said about human nature, emotion, and decision-making in this dark reflection of our own world. Overall, fans of the likes of Raymond Carver are sure to adore Teeth & Crumpets: I know I’ll be reading these stories again and again.