Book Review: Short Stories of Earl Staggs by Earl Staggs

Short Stories of Earl Staggs
Earl Staggs
Ebook, April 2011
Available on Kindle, Nook and other platforms

As part of my effort to show Kindle readers that there are plenty of great reads $.99, I give you the venerable Earl Staggs, whose short story collection is told with wit, pathos and, lucky us, even some humor. This Derringer Award winner has published numerous short stories over the years in a variety of magazines, and this is an anthology of his best crime stories.

In my mind the best authors are those who can whittle a story down to a few pages, giving us just enough background and setting so we know what’s about to happen. Then, our hearts are pounding along with the protagonist, mostly the underappreciated good cop as in “Battered”, and “Brother-In-Law” and sometimes from the perspective of the bad guy as in “Dead Wife Walking.”  So, which were my favorites? I thought, by the end of the collection, I could tell you that… but I don’t think I can. Try “Room Six” for clever twist or “Fig Newtons and Heavy Bags”  for humor, or “Caught on Christmas Eve”  for a heartwarming story that will bring a tear to your eye.

All of these stories are worthy of a complete novel and many of them will live in your head long after you finish the book.

I guarantee that if you like police procedurals  these short stories will leave you wanting more of Earl Staggs books.

Reviewed by guest reviewer RP Dahlke, January 2012.