The Speed of Sadness

      Sam Sparks
The Speed of Sadness

Ex lovers meet to explore the depths of the Tango. Mark and Fran find that they are unable to ignore their illicit love, whatever the consequences may be.Nankichi Niimi & Kenji Miyazawa are undoubtedly two of Japan's most highly regarded writers of fantasy fiction. Book 2 of Tales From Japan contains four stories by Kenji Miyazawa and one story by Nankichi Niimi. In addition to the title story Gauche the Cellist, this book also includes Kenji's much loved The Restaurant of Many Orders.Gauche is a hopeless musician and he's always being yelled at by the conductor. It's not because he doesn't try, it's just that there is something lacking in his music. And now the orchestra is preparing for a big concert so if Gauche doesn't improve in a real hurry he's going to be in big trouble. One day a strange cat turns up holding a tomato in his mouth and then all sorts of strange things start to happen to Gauche.A Story with a MessageThe underlying theme in Gauche the Cellist is admitting our weaknesses and recognizing our strengths. It is not easy to admit when we are doing something wrong, especially when we are putting in so much effort. But if that effort is being applied in the wrong place, then it is almost impossible to achieve the goals that we have set ourselves. Admitting to ourselves that we've been doing something the wrong way is the first step to achieving our dreams. And in the same way, it is also important to recognize the things that we've been doing right, and take pride in what you have achieved up until now.The Nighthawk StarThe nighthawk has a hard time of it. He's got a face like a mud pie, he gets teased by all the other birds and he has to put up with bullies. Hans Christian Andersen was a great inspiration to Kenji and you will recognize something of the Ugly Duckling in this story, but the setting and the finale is classical Kenji, making this story a standout favorite amongst many Japanese readers.Wild Pear (Yamanashi)A surreal tale about a family of crabs on the bottom of the river. The amazing descriptions of life under the water will leave you with a truly new perspective on the world. An extremely well-crafted fable, with a profound underlying message.The Restaurant of Many OrdersThis is perhaps the most famous of Kenji's short stories and one of his personal favorites, as it was the title story of his one and only self-published collection of short stories. Two hunters go on a hunting trip in the country and end up completely lost. Luckily they come across what appears to be an extremely popular restaurant…but everything is not as it seems.Buying Mittens by Nankichi Niimi Mama fox only wants the best for her little one, so when the cold winter arrives and her precious boy needs some mittens, then she knows what she must do. The only problem is that she is afraid and her legs won't take her any further. So her son must go on his own. The highlight of this delightful children's story is the beautiful description of the foxes' journey through the snow covered woods during the middle of the night.
Read online

    The Viewing

      Sam Sparks
The Viewing

James Lister needs to escape his troubles. To take the edge of his malaise he indulges in a nostalgia visit to his hometown to relive happier times. On arrival, he finds his old home is up for sale. James wants to take a look around and poses as a buyer. Once inside the property he experiences a flashback memory of his father furtively hiding something in a loft wall. He dupes the agent inThe dangers of the plains draw even closer as Kaela and Wade near the promised refuge of Sanctuary. In the meantime, Kaela is forced to reassess just who she can and cannot trust.The Outcast and the Survivor is a chapter-series that follows Kaela, a princess of the mythical kingdom of Kalepo. After her father's sudden death, Kaela is exiled from the kingdom by her older sister Mariam, who claims their father's throne within moments of his passing. By being made an outcast, Kaela is forced not only to say goodbye to her homeland, but also to all of civilization. Kalepo is known only to itself, meaning that Kaela should expect to find a world devoid of humanity beyond the kingdom's borders, but because of something her father whispered to her on his deathbed, she knows that there is more out there, a world of dark secrets for her to discover. The Outcast and the Survivor is released one chapter at a time at the start of each month. There were times in the past when writers would release stories as a series, often for newspapers or magazines. It's not much different from TV series in that each chapter often has its own sort of conclusion, though the larger story is not completed until the end. The series is being written with the intent of ending it at chapter 36, which is scheduled for December of 2017, though this could change as the story develops.
Read online

    The Life and Times of Arnaud Morin

      Sam Sparks
The Life and Times of Arnaud Morin

Set in a provincial French town , Arnaud Morin is the unwanted result of a Mayoral daliance with a young local girl. The situation sparks a chain of events that could have been orchestrated by the Devil himself. Arnaud grows up unloved, but a talent for Chemistry leads him into a respected profession. However, trouble is on the horizon and more extraordinary familial issues ensue.Ever found out you were adopted? Imagine finding out that your birthmother is an evil sorceress from another realm! That is exactly what happened to Cassandra Smith, also known as Cassie, when she was 16. Before you get to that, you first read the events leading up to her true adventure in Part One. Then the two realms collide in an epic battle between good and evil, love and hate, not only outside, but also inside Cassie's head. Follow in her mother's footsteps to take over the realms, or fight against her to stay with her friends and loved ones here on Earth?
Read online