I recently read When Devil Married God: An anthology of stories by Shelly Sharma, a book I received as a prize via Penmancy, an online writing platform.
I found the title quite intriguing, and to add to my joy, the stories were as intriguing and unique as the title itself. However, I must mention a trigger warning at the beginning would have prepared me to approach these stories with caution. Also, considering the disturbing themes, this anthology is more suited to a mature audience.
There are 9 short stories in this collection. At the heart of the stories are issues faced by women, and how they deal with them. With characters as close to real, who are sharing their raw pain and honest emotions, it makes for a thought-provoking and shocking read. Shelly has experimented with varied themes and genres in this collection. The stories highlight the challenges faced by women in their everyday lives, be it domestic violence, marginalization, gender discrimination, sexual desires, or prejudices.
Shelly has adopted a casual approach to writing, and the simple vocabulary ensures the reader doesn’t stray away from the profound thoughts and harrowing journeys of the various protagonists.
The queen of mourning, The taming, and The God that failed are my favourites.
I know that this is the author’s debut, and she has done a marvelous job with the stories. There is scope for improvement as regards editing, and it impacted my reading experience a bit. But I would still recommend this book as it is a profound collection of hard-hitting reality of many women.
Pick up When Devil Married God, if you want to be shocked, to be pushed out of your comfort zone, and hear the collective voices of women who have been silenced for ages. Fans of realistic fiction would appreciate the subtle nuances of this book. However, if you are looking for a relaxing read, then this is not the one for you.
Wordsopedia Rating 3/5
|Title: When Devil Married God: An anthology of stories||Author: Shelly Sharma|
|Publisher: Notion Press||Publication date: 28 November 2020|
|Genre: Fiction||Format: Paperback|
|ISBN: 978-1649839671||No. of Pages: 186|
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About the author
Shelly Sharma is a critic, book reviewer, and short story writer.
Get in touch with the author on her website