Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn and Other Stories by David John Griffin




About Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn

Dogs are reported for their constant barking ...and so begins one of the strangest stories you will ever read. Audrey Ackerman, sent to visit the dogs at a 17th century coach house, is unsettled by paranormal sightings. Stella Bridgeport - manager at The Animal Welfare Union - communicates with Audrey via emails. And those Stella receives are as startling as they are incredible: descriptions of extraordinary events concerning a science fiction writer's journal; giant swans; bizarre android receptionist; a ghost dog. Insanity or fantasy? Fact or fiction? The only given is, it all starts and ends with two dogs at The One Dog Inn...and other stories: 12 short stories with aspects of the macabre, the surreal or the strangeness of magical realism to entertain and delight you.


My review of Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn

After reading the wonderful short story collection, 'Sweet Home', by Carys Bray,  I made a promise to myself to read more short story collections. Therefore, when the opportunity arose for me to read and review, Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn and Other Stories, I jumped at the chance. This novella and short story collection was an absolute treat to read.

Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn, takes up around 40 percent of the entire book. This story focusses upon two women, two friends,  Audrey and Stella. Stella runs the local animal rescue centre and Audrey works there. The two women have been friends for a long rime. We learn of their relationship and the events surrounding the tale of the two dogs at the One Dog Inn, via a series of email conversations. I liked the fact that I learned about these two women in such an interesting way, as reading their personal thoughts from a first parson perspective really helped to make them seem more 'real' and what they had to say seemed more credible.

So Stella and Audrey have an argument prior to the book's beginning. We learn of this at the beginning of the story. Audrey is upset because Stella did not believe her account of what happened at the One Dog Inn, when she was called there to investigate a report of loud, barking dogs. As Audrey begins to tell Stella of what she saw while at the Inn, we learn what she saw at the same time, and it is up to us, the reader, to choose whether to believe her or not.  Stella obviously does  not believe her,  and why would she? She suggests that Audrey is suffering from stress, ear infections, anything but what she is suggesting.

I of course believed every word, as this is fiction  so I had to go with it and embrace the supernatural, abnormal and fantastical goings on. We read of secret tunnels, hounds and robots, it is obvious that the author had a lot of fun writing this novel and this sense of enthusiasm rubbed off on me, as I found myself being immersed into this very different world and thoroughly enjoyed this fantastical quirky, tale of the paranormal.

The remaining book is made up of 12 short stories, each of differing lengths, but all equally fascinating. One in particular stood out to me, Return to the Sea, a melancholy tale about lost love, the past and the future. What all of these stories share in common, is that they offer something a little different, an alternative view of the world that that is quite refreshing.

Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn and Other Stories is a refreshing, quirky and enjoyable read. If you are looking for something that is a little different, that is well written by a talented storyteller, then this is the book for you.

Two Dogs at the One Dog Inn and Other Stories is published on the 26 Jan by Urbane Publications. It is available to buy from Amazon here.

With thanks to the publoisher for a review copy.


About the author



David John Griffin is a writer, graphic designer and app designer, and lives in a small town by the Thames in Kent, UK with his wife Susan and two dogs called Bullseye and Jimbo. He is currently working on the first draft of a third novel. His first novel published by Urbane Publications in October 2015 is called The Unusual Possession of Alastair Stubb. The second is a literary/psychological novel, entitled Infinite Rooms. His novella and collection of short stories called Two Dogs At The One Dog Inn And Other Stories will be published in January 2017 by Urbane Publications. One of his short stories was shortlisted for The HG Wells Short Story competition 2012 and published in an anthology.

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