REVIEW: “Blessing” by Jennifer Lyn Parsons

Review of Jennifer Lyn Parsons, “Blessing,” Luna Station Quarterly 48 (2021): Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

Kira is a member of Clan Thrush, a nomadic clan that serves the local communities as monster hunters. But after the death of her friend Thom in a monster-hunt gone bad, she leaves the Clan and strikes off on her own. But no matter how long she wanders, she cannot escape her grief for her friends and family who have died: Only the lady of death can remove that grief for her, and only Grannie’s songbirds can help her find the lady.

There was a lot of meandering in this story, a lot of retrospective references to isolated events, that never quite came together. The pace was very slow, with very little happening, and when things did happen, it was to characters who felt rather flat. This story didn’t really work for me.

REVIEW: “Silks” by Jennifer Lyn Parsons

Review of Jennifer Lyn Parsons, “Silks”, Luna Station Quarterly 44 (2020): Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

This was the third circus-themed story I’d read in this issue of LSQ, which prompted me to actually read the editorial — the entire issue is circus-themed, so maybe I should not have been so surprised to be reading so many circus stories!

I liked this one for its wlw storyline, but I felt it was rather lacking on actual story content.

REVIEW: “Joinery” by Jennifer Lyn Parsons

Review of Jennifer Lyn Parsons, “Joinery”, Luna Station Quarterly 36 (2018): Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

This entire issue of Luna Station Quarterly is filled with strong, confident, older women, which has made the entire collection of stories a joy to read. Regine, in Parsons’ “Joinery”, is no exception. I loved the care and dedication with which she approached not only her woodworking but also the other people who lived on the same technologically-backward planet, Diot. When an unexpected stranger arrived in her isolated village, Regine is wary but not suspicious. Grannie Hella knows more than she lets on, and lets on that she knows too much. She also brings with her more than Regine could ever imagine.

I love when a story sucks me into all its layers, and hints at all number of layers that can’t be reached in the course of a single short story but which are clearly there, touched on here and there. Who are the Bright Ones? What is their curse, and can it ever be broken? Why does Grannie Hella come to Regine? All these questions swirl around — some are answered, others, painfully, are not — and the end result is a story that’s both bittersweet and hopeful.