Title: Small Time Crimes
Author: Paul D. Brazill
Genre: Short Stories, Thriller, Horror
First published: July 31st 2018
Finished reading: October 29th 2018
Pages: 197

“He’d known that if you pulled on that particular thread hard enough your whole life would unravel, but pull he did.”

*** A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***


I was looking forward to this short story bundle, as it sounded like the perfect way to get myself in the Halloween mood. Sadly, it wasn’t ment to be. Part of me thinks I’m the wrong target group for Small Time Crimes, although I normally love my dark humor and I don’t mind violence and graphic scenes. But this was just too much for me. I didn’t like the writing style, most of the stories completely lacked plots or stopped in the middle of a story, some were simply disgusting and unfortunately my overall experience wasn’t a good one. Below lightning speed thoughts (read: rant) and ratings on each short story.

WARNING: there might be some mild swearing involved.

# NUN WITH A GUN: This story was confusing and there were too many POV switches for such a short story. It lacks an ending as well since it stops in the middle of the story. 2/5 stars
# THE HIT MAN AND HER: I’m not sure what to think of it. It was a bit confusing and didn’t seem to go anywhere… At least it had an ending. 3/5 stars
# CHELSEA GIRLS: It flowed better than the previous ones and at least had some sort of a plot and direction. The whole ‘I pretend I speak French, but I really have no clue’ talking was quite annoying though. 3,5/5 stars
# IN THE DEVIL’S NAME: Ok, this was just simply disgusting and didn’t make sense at all. 2/5 stars
# THE ODDS AND THE SODS: WTF was this?! Animal cruelty and disturbing SOB… No no no no no 1/5 stars
# LIFE AFTER LIFE: This one started out ok enough, but suddenly switched to a completely different story in the middle of a sentence practically?? WTF?! Also, the second story was completely gross. 2/5 stars
# NEW DAWN FADES: Yet another story that doesn’t make sense at all… Too many different POVs and too chaotic. 2,5/5 stars
# BAND ON THE RUN: Again a stror that doesn’t make a lot of sense. I seem to be repeating myself here. 2/5 stars
# THE LAST SHOT: Yet another one without a proper plot and no real ending either. Pretty messed up as well. 2,5/5 stars
# THE TALL MAN: This one was actually pretty decent and flowed quite well. It had an open ending, but not frustratingly so. 3,5/5 stars
# THINGS I USED TO LIKE: I don’t see a proper connection between the two POVs, especially since the first never mentions the name of the character. 2,5/5 stars
# THE FRIEND CATCHER: This one is actually quite interesting and I like the symbolism. 3,5/5 stars
# THE CONTENDER: It’s at least another one without POV switches and a story that makes some sense… Even though it’s messed up. 3/5 stars
# YESTERDAY’S WINE: It had a nice twist I didn’t see coming. Without doubt one of the better ones. Although I can’t see the supposed humor in any of the stories. 3,5/5 stars
# RIGHT PLACE, WRONG TIME: It was too short to mean something, lack of dept and characters. At least there were no POV switches though. 2,5/5 stars
# CHRISTMAS WRAPPING: It was not bad, but not great either. At least it flowed normally and felt more rounded. 3/5 stars
# SHEILA TAKE A BOW: WTF?! I don’t get why this should be humor. Too much useless violence and foul language everywhere. 2/5 stars
# THE DOMINANT HAND: Ok, those are two completely random POVs we’re talking about… And the final few sentences are not enough to connect them. The writing style again is frustratingly not for me. 2/5 stars
# SMALL TOWN CREED: There is too much swearing and crude language involved, but at least there is just one POV. 2,5/5 stars
# THE LONG HAUL: Ok I didn’t get this story at all. At least the language was down and not too disgusting. 2,5/5 stars
# PRETTY GREEN: It wasn’t as bad as the others, but it really shows the writing just isn’t for me. And I normally really like dark humor… 3/5 stars
# GUMSHOE BLUES: Oh yes, definitely the wrong target group here… It would fit a male audience way better. This story made me feel dirty and not in a good way. 2/5 stars
# THE BEGINNING OF THE END: This story at least has a bit more content, although the two POVs are distracting and the lack of ending is frustrating. 3/5 stars
# LIFE ON MARS: There is so much violence and disgustingness here… And once again two annoying POVs. I wasn’t a fan. 2/5 stars
# TRAIN IN VAIN: This one has some potential, but lacks cohesion and the writing style is still off for me. Same goes for the humor. 3/5 stars
# SNAPSHOTS: Yet another one that jumps around so much and doesn’t really makes sense… 2/5 stars
# SEVEN MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: Why? I just don’t get this. Random violent and cringeworthy randomness without a proper story and then that ending? I can’t see how this would be entertaining to read. 2/5 stars
# CATCH AS CATCH CAN: Crude language, violence and nothing makes sense… The story actually started out ok enough but then quickly went south. 2/5 stars
# THE SHARPEST TOOLS IN THE BOX: Ugh this is absolutely bloody disgusting. How is cannibalism supposed to be entertaining?!?! 1/5 stars
# GARETH AND FIONE GO ABROAD: Ok this one wasn’t as bad, but still unnecessarily violent. Just not my cup of tea. 2,5/5 stars
# A BIG PAYOFF: Once again an overdose of violence and crude language. Ugh. This is getting seriously frustrating. Also, again cannibalism?!?! Yuck yuck gross.1/5 stars
# IN THE (RESERVOIR) DOG HOUSE: Too short and doesn’t make sense at all… I just don’t get it. 2/5 stars
# FIERY JACK: Ok, so he just kills himself? I don’t get why this is supposed to be entertaining. This is seriously twisted. And disgusting. 2/5 stars
# GETTING AWAY WITH IT: Another story that stops right in the middle before things could get interesting. Although I guess I’m spared the violence here. 2,5/5 stars
# A MAN OF SOPHISTICATED TASTES: Once again an overdose of swearing and making fun of the Tourette syndrome as well… Disgusting to do so and not funny. And we have cannibalism again. Ugh. 1/5 stars


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