Hidden Truths, A Short Story Collection
2016, Bold Venture Publishing
"A yearning for connection binds many of the stories in Jeff Boyle’s fine collection. His lean, muscular prose reads as smooth as a flat sea. Yet still waters can disguise powerful undertows, and to slip into Boyle’s world is to risk being swept away. Let yourself go, and when the current releases you back on shore you’ll have more to contemplate than the view of the ocean many of his characters enjoy .… It’s in the premise that we find commonalities among Boyle’s sixteen stories. In a world where people find themselves increasingly isolated from neighbors and their communities, Boyle shows us again and again characters swimming against that tide to reach some kind of bond with another.
"Two retirees who navigate the unfamiliar customs of Internet dating.Young lovers who find insight into their relationship through a shared viewing of a classic film. A man drawn to a bedraggled street evangelist. The elderly patients of an assisted-living facility who bond over Scrabble. A childless couple who contemplate adopting a boy to fill an unstated void. A professor who bonds with his students over a Socratic exchange about the causes of crime. A man and woman whose May-December romance threatens to come crashing down on a discount-airlines flight. Young mall workers who learn about trust and love at the food court.
"The stories are told with humor, compassion and an eye for detail that vivify the varied settings. You don’t have to take daily bicycle rides on a breeze-cooled beach — as Boyle does — to feel the sun on your shoulders and smell the tang of salt on the air. ”
— from the introduction by Derek Catron
Synopses for the short story collection, Hidden Truths
Miss Piano – A jazz pianist living alone in New York City contemplates her fortieth birthday.
Concealed Identities – A novelist learns his birth name and personal identities are fiction.
Life Expectancies – Two assisted-living residents accept life’s truths as they face mortality.
The Boy – A happy but childless couple consider adopting a troubled ten-year old boy.
Twenty-two – A shattered war veteran on the brink of suicide leaves his decision to chance.
Malcolm and Molly – Two young mall workers learn about trust and love at the food court.
Reverse Tango – A classic film inspires two lovers to face truths about their relationship.
Frack, Fracking, Fracked – An elderly couple is shattered when their rural land is poisoned.
Accidental Deaths – A boy grows into a man and finds closure after ten years of unrequited love.
We Should Meet – Truths erode the perfect match for two retirees who meet on the internet.
Guns – A college student has evidence of premeditation in a shooting death ruled accidental.
Sense of Time – External forces may be causing the memory lapses of two senior citizens.
Bicycling the Beach – A woman confronts an aging beach bicyclist looking for companionship.
Euro Sky Hop – An older man and a younger woman try to overcome relationship obstacles.
Criminology – A professor challenges students to consider the causes and effects of crime.
The Doomsayer – A homeless-looking prophet preaches doom from his sidewalk ministry.
--Jeff Boyle, Ormond Beach, June, 2016
To purchase "Hidden Truths"
Jeff Boyle, Author
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