Short Stories
Flash and Bang

by J. Alan Hartman, ed.
Untreed Reads, October 2015, $16

“The Short Mystery Fiction Society was founded in 1986 1996 to promote the reading, writing and publication of short-form mystery and crime.” So we’re told on the back cover of Flash and Bang, edited by J. Alan Hartman. This anthology is the first publication by the SMFS, and there are some fine yarns inside, from Bobbi A. Chukran’s “The Conflagration at the Nameless Cotton Gin,” in which anonymous letters lead to arson, to Sandra Murphy’s “Arthur,” which has an unusual narrator, to John M. Floyd’s “Rosie’s Choice,” in which things aren’t as they might seem, to Laurie Stevens’ haunting “The Bag Lady.” There are 14 other equally pleasing stories, and even a poem. (Disclaimer: I’m a member of SMFS, but I had nothing to do with the publication of this anthology.)

Bill Crider
Teri Duerr
Hartman, ed.
October 2015
Untreed Reads