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8 Sep 2008

Sheep and Wolves

Sheep and Wolves by Jeremy Shipp and published by Raw Dog Screaming Press is a collection of bizarre dark fiction at around 161 pages including cover, publication pages, acknowledgements, thanks and contents.

Jeremy Shipp currently resides with his wife Lisa in their haunted Victorian farmhouse in Southern California. He has written numerous creations which are published in over 40 publications. Sheep and Wolves is his first published collection of stories. His debut novel is called Vacation.

The cover of Sheep and Wolves created by Jennifer C. Barnes depicts the title in bold lettering, the writing is black and on an orange background with a wolf at the top and a sheep at the bottom. It looks as if the wolf is leaping down toward the sheep.

The seventeen stories here told are anything between two and thirty two pages in length. The theme appears to be of strong and weak people in different yet similar and usually bloody situations. How does this fit the title, perfectly in fact since the strong (wolf) preys on the weak (sheep).

Jeremy Shipp has a rather unique way of writing which both draws the reader deep into the story quickly but also confuses the hell out of you along the way as the events unroll. He’s like the voice in your head, the narrator of life that gives you insight to another’s world, thoughts and dreams. Truly he see’ things differently than most. It’s a hallucination wrapped in complete fantasy rolled in reality and raked through horror.

I would love to read some of these stories as longer versions to see what else Mr Shipp can come up with but also to see how these characters came to find themselves in these situations. I would certainly recommend Mr Shipp’s work to anyone over the age of 18 years. Any author that can create an emotional attachment in such short a time and can manage to both confuse the reader yet maintain their attention without faltering certainly deserves four stars like Mr Jeremy Shipp.

By R.N. Hadley