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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Anopheles, and Other Fables is a concise collection of tales in the mythological and nature-themed sub-genres and was penned by author John C. West. Set in the time of ancient Greece and its classical period, this collection of plant and animal-themed works is written in the form of original fables that can be accessed and enjoyed by readers of all ages. The titular story is a particular highlight, which tells of a fabled beauty from a wealthy family, and the adventures which ensue as she learns to sing and communicate with the powers in her melodies. What results is a delightful collection of well-penned stories that spark the imagination and explain where some of our current beliefs may come from.
Author John C. West writes with what seems to be a simplistic and effortless charm, though I’ve no doubt that much thought and delicacy has gone into the construction of every tale in this highly accessible collection. Proving that one does not need to be overly complex in order to tell a story and tell it well, West develops a Kipling-esque narrative charm as he recounts the tale of Anopheles, which was by far my favorite of the collection and deserves its pride of place at the opening. I enjoyed the ways in which classical culture and belief were delivered in an understandable way to a modern audience, and the language choice and smooth grammar would make it easy to share these tales with the whole family. Overall, I would highly recommend Anopheles, and Other Fables to short story and fable fans everywhere.