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26 Absurdities of Tragic Proportions:
"...resulting in one of my favorite reads ever. In his book, 26 Absurdities of Tragic Proportions, Mr. Woodruff uses one particular work of Edward Gorey...In his mystifying short story book, Matthew elaborates on that brief sentence and continues to do so all the way from 'A' to 'Z'. I think it was a true work of artistry for the author to take 26 itty-bitty yarns and spin them into one spectacular, albeit grim, multicolored blanket with which to cover oneself on a cold night. From Amy's stumble down the steps to Zillian's death by gin, I couldn't read these tales fast enough, and now I am greatly saddened that it has all ended...One will be glad to know that perhaps 98% of the content of the tales was the lead-up with the final 2% being the actual denouement. To me, ironically, this is what really made the tales come alive...With every story, I was astonished as to how the author could take one little line and make a full-fledged, sometimes intricate, tale from it. Amazingly, I found myself laughing almost as frequently as I sobbed, which is really saying something about Mr. Woodruff's genius."-OnlineBookClub.org
"Detailing every behind the scenes misadventure of Gorey's small fry, “26 Absurdities” is darkly funny, and will appeal to those who see comedy in the darker side of life. "
"Marvelous book. Highly recommended. Quite the imaginative tales. Edward Gorey would be proud."
"Matt's stories tell the behind the scenes adventure (or should I say misadventure) for each child in Gorey's picture book. I found the writing to be engaging, entertaining, and macabrely funny. A definite acquisition for readers who enjoy dark humor."
"Witty, dark humor. Well written and engaging. Highly recommended! This series of stories is a
light look at the dark side of life."
TALES from the AETHER
5.0 out of 5 stars
Uniquely dark and creepy! A must read!
Reviewed in the United States on December 16, 2019
Format: Kindle Edition
"Woodruff pens magnificently dark stories in TALES from the AETHER: Extraodinary Tales of Dark Fiction, Dark Humor and Horror. This collection makes you wonder what goes on in the mind of this author, and that you're so glad he put it on paper. I liked each story, and enjoy Woodruff's writing style, and his story style. The stories are either, dark, horror, dark and humorous or all of the above. I read this cover to cover, and even went back and read a few all over again, for a second. and even third time. One of my favorites was "My After Life" even as it described the cats feasting on his dead body. Yes, it's that wonderfully creepy, and you don't want to put it down. I look forward to reading more by this author.
This book is a definite recommendation by Amy's Bookshelf Reviews.
I received this book as a gift in exchange for an honest and unbiased review." ~Amy's Bookshelf Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars
Dark Fiction At Its Best!
Reviewed in the United States on February 12, 2020
Format: Kindle Edition
"This is the best collection of short stories of this genre I have had the pleasure of reading till date. I loved the illustrations and the way they prepared you for what to expect from a new story. The stories were well thought out and the delivery was impeccable."
"Woodruff’s panache for writing shines in his second collection of short stories with the wildly imagined worlds, powerfully drawn realistic characters, and an unsettling portrayal of various happenings in his protagonists’ lives. Merging the profound emotions of joy, fear. Some stories are funny with lighter moments (“Lenny the Djinn”), but the major chunk is dark and chillingly unsettling (The Dark New Year, Just Desert). Woodruff’s best skill is examining the depth of the fear in the human mind, and that’s what stays at the heart of the book’s theme. The powerful illustrations perfectly match the collection’s ominous mood, making an immediate impact on readers’ minds. This haunting collection draws on the deepest emotions of love, grief, fear, foreboding, and hope and will stay at readers’ minds long after they finish the book. This is a marvelous collection from a very talented writer."
-The Prairies Book Review