More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers


Fiction - Anthology
94 Pages
Reviewed on 07/28/2021
Buy on Amazon

Author Biography

Theodore Jerome (Ted) Cohen is an award-winning author who has published more than ten novels--all but one of them mystery/thrillers--two books of short stories, and eight flash-fiction anthologies. He also writes illustrated storybooks for children (K-3) in the series Stories for the Early Years as well as Young Adult (YA) novels under the pen name "Alyssa Devine." During the course of his 45-year career he worked as an engineer, scientist, CBS Radio Station News Service (RSNS) commentator, private investigator, and Antarctic explorer. What he's been able to do with his background is mix fiction with reality in ways that even his family and friends have been unable to unravel!

Dr. Cohen's writings (he holds three degrees in the physical sciences) have received the highest reviews from Feathered Quill, Hollywood Book Reviews, Kirkus Discoveries, Pacific Book Review, Reader Views, and Readers' Favorite, among others, with many of his books recognized for their excellence through medals awarded by several of these same organizations following their annual book competitions. In 2017, for example, Readers' Favorite awarded Dr. Cohen's first short story anthology, The Road Less Taken: A Collection of Unusual Short Stories - Book 1, a Silver Medal while the National Association of Book Entrepreneurs (NABE) awarded the same book its Pinnacle Book Achievement Award for Best in Category: Short Stories. The NABE also awarded Dr. Cohen's collection, Creative Ink, Flashy Fiction: Flash Fiction Anthology - Book 3, its Pinnacle Book Achievement Award for Best in Category: Anthology - Winter, 2018.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Shrabastee Chakraborty for Readers' Favorite

Who knew that a seal or a deer could possess ample knowledge of photography? They might have a few suggestions if you are willing to listen. Or that grumpy, hairy person you are checking out might surprise you with their identity! To know more about them, you have to read More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers. It is a collection of twenty-four short stories by Theodore Jerome Cohen, some of which are written under his pen name, Alyssa Devine. Based on the pictorial prompts provided by Indies Unlimited for their Flash Fiction Challenges, Cohen has penned these stories, featuring all kinds of animals from a mighty elephant to an almost unnoticeable fly, from a wild cougar to a beloved pet dog.

Cohen described unique human-animal interactions that helped the book reach a whole new dimension. It was an unprecedented experience to view our familiar world through the eyes of these animals. While most of the prompt pictures made me feel warm and fuzzy, Cohen’s ability to spin unpredictable tales from those prompts was even more amazing. I devoured the page-long stories quickly, laughing out loud at times and feeling bemused at others. Stories like “Stefan” and “Ashes to Ashes” touched my heart, while “Look Alikes,” “Plain Sight,” or “Yo” took me by surprise with their quirks. I would recommend More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers not only to those who love animals but also to anyone appreciating a set of bite-sized, mind-blowing tales. If you are looking for pointers to write flash fiction yourself, this book can serve as an invaluable guide.

Asher Syed

More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers by Theodore Jerome Cohen and Alyssa Devine is a collection of original flash fiction and the nineteenth book in the series written by its prolific author, who uses his second name for YA writing. Flash fiction is a form of micro-story that can be fully consumed usually in under a minute or two. Cohen's bite-sized work in this specific anthology revolves around the central theme of animals, from mammals of the human persuasion in the tongue-in-cheek Sam the Ram, where the titular character bucks a photographer's assumptions of his subjects, to a woman with a short rope on a bad hair day in Plain Sight. Others, such as Fox, shift through three different points of view. This one, in particular, begins with the actual fox, moving to the huntsman on the hunt for it, and lastly to the ingenuity of two interlopers bent on redirecting the entire party.

Whether it's under Theodore Jerome Cohen or Alyssa Devine, the work is presented with a couple of accompanying components in More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers. The prompt employed from a photograph is included at the beginning of each piece, alongside the photo credit, a quote, and the title itself. This is followed by the tale and, where relevant, additional credits and/or endnotes when a tale is based on something true, which really informs readers about the writing process. The quality of writing is above average and as with most anthologies, it's a bit of a mixed bag with the ones a reader will like and others that are less engaging. As a man with family living on Lake Tahoe's California North Shore, I really loved the story Devil's Horns, where a family is out searching for their beloved companion following a devastating fire. Overall, this is a good little book for escapism when brevity is all a reader has the time or patience for.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

Can an elephant be a little girl’s best friend? Can it talk to her? Is it possible that Sam the Ram knows more about the camera and film, photography at its best, than the human taking the picture? Is there a deeper, more profound meaning to the phrase, “fly on the wall?” Well, ask a fly. Perhaps Günter should have asked the fly on the wall, the one he tried to swat and kill multiple times. Perhaps had he asked the fly, he would still be alive. Animals, and, yes, insects, have their own unique and very surprising tales to tell. And, contrary to some opinions, these living creatures are smart, perhaps smarter than humans.

More Flash Fiction Stories for Animal Lovers by Theodore Jerome Cohen is Book 19 in his Flash Fiction Anthology Series. This collection of 24 stories explores a wide range of connections humans share with other living creatures on this planet. We often think of the human-animal connection as relating to humans and their dog, or cat, or horse, but there are many other connections that we tend to overlook. Using photographs as prompts (the photograph accompanies the story it inspired), the author creates viable and interesting (sometimes funny, other times sad) stories of what possibly could be going on in the creature’s mind – like the fly on the wall who makes a much better psychic than any human. Some of the stories are brief: flash stories that provide a punch and a compelling tale in a very short passage. These shorter pieces are what the author describes as “tiny, bite-sized morsels.” Other stories are longer, some based on real-life scenarios. Overall, a great read.