Rage by John Mavin


byJohn Mavin

Paperback | October 1, 2017

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“The Obergefreiter” is a chilling story of a Canadian pilot in WWII Germany in 1944 and his interactions with a German guard. In this short, poignant story, the humanity of both the characters is revealed, and it becomes clear that the depth of their losses and the horror of war has left them equally broken.

“A Flock of Crows is Called a Murder” is a glimpse into the lives of a young brother and sister. The siblings defend their home from invading crows with BB guns and shovels, and learn the word that describes so much of their life: horripilation, when “the hair follicles on my neck stand up”.

“And Apparently, Cigarettes” captures the moment a family finally falls apart. Involved is the father having a drink on the porch wearing his sweat-stained tank top, his wife, a psychic with anger management issues, their daughter with nicotine-stained fingers, and the gulf of heartache between them all.

“The Edmore Snyders” dives into the last few days before an archaeologist finishes her parole. She does everything she can to keep her rage under control so that she can be released and get back to her research on her seventeen-thousand-year-old cave paintings in France.

“Waiting for the Defibrillator to Charge” follows Mike as his heart skips a beat before he storms out of the strip bar. He didn’t know his friends brought him there to show him a girl they’ve all grown up with, that Mike has always cared about, who is now called Destiny and undoing her glittering gold bikini top.

“Deposition” is the story of an understanding made between a police officer and a suspect in the murder of a famous archaeologist in Guatemala.

“Redemption” shows a glimpse into Reverend Nathan Sandy’s moral dilemmas as he takes a Columbian refugee into sanctuary in his church. The Canadian authorities are not convinced she is who she says she is and the reverend must decide just how far he will go to protect her.

“The High Alpinist’s Survival Guide” is a chilling tale of a boy’s unusual motivation for an ascent up Mount Everest.

“The Home for Unwed Mothers”, now a rundown haunted house that teenagers break into to party, is set on fire by two friends out for revenge.

How does love change as you age? “D.S. Al Fine” is the story of an aging couple — the aggression that can come with Alzheimers, the love that endures, and the love that doesn’t.

“Rage” culminates this intense short story collection with a note of finality, in which we are asked: how twisted can our traumas leave us? How are we scarred and changed? “Rage” reveals the grudge of loss, the difficult healing of heartache, and the mercurial nature of sex and love.

About The Author

John Mavin has taught creative writing at Capilano University, Simon Fraser University, the University of British Columbia, with New Shoots (through the Vancouver School Board), and at the Learning Exchange in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. He is a graduate of SFU’s The Writer’s Studio and also holds an MFA in creative writing from UBC...

Details & Specs

Title:RageFormat:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8 × 5 × 0.68 inPublished:October 1, 2017Publisher:Thistledown PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1771871415

ISBN - 13:9781771871419

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Extra Content

Read from the Book

From “Rage”The girl turns off the water and reaches for a towel. Finding the rack empty, she steps out of the tub and bends to open the cabinet. As she pulls a folded towel from the top of the stack, an oversized hardcover book wedged within falls to the floor. The book is Intimate Photography. Its cover is a shadowed and entwined nude couple, presented in black and white. The girl opens the toilet tank and drops the book inside. Displaced water sloshes over the porcelain.From “A Flock of Crows is Called a Murder”Gary fires. His shot grazes the trunk a foot below the crows. Bark flakes off and rains on the windshield. The crows flex their wings. Aunt Sylvia gasps. “Did your father buy you that?”I estimate the distance for Gary. “Nine yards.” Well within range. I wet a finger and test the wind. “Slight breeze from the west.”Aunt Sylvia stares at me, open-mouthed.“Thanks.” Gary sights carefully and fires again. A direct hit on a back leg.The stricken crow squawks and drops from its branch. Halfway to the ground, it beats its wings to slow its descent, then lands on Dad’s Sixty Special, right over the passenger window. It tells Gary off in a harsh voice.Aunt Sylvia’s face pales. “Oh my God.”Gary reloads.“Don’t you dare.” Aunt Sylvia steps forward.Gary fires. He hits the crow square in the chest.With a gutter cry, the crow leaps into the air and flies right at us, pumping its wings hard. Its eyes are black marbles.