Way back in 2019, I reviewed sci-fi short story The Cleansing by Ukrainian author Anton Eine (read my review HERE). Following from this, Anton also kindly gifted me copies of his other short stories, My New Superjob and Post-Molecular Comfort Food, which to my shame, I had not reviewed prior to today. In fact, somehow, they had totally slipped off of my radar until I saw Anton’s name mentioned in a newsletter from crime thriller writer Rachel McLean. Rachel’s newsletter directed me to the thought-provoking interview Anton gave on the podcast of writer Mark Dawson (watch HERE). After watching the interview, I knew that the very least I could do was share my reviews and generally shout about Anton’s books from the social media rooftops, so here goes!
MY NEW SUPERJOB
Have you ever wanted to be a superhero? The city’s defender against crime, violence, and all sorts of sicko nastiness?
When one day she stumbled upon a strange help wanted ad claiming that the city was looking for a superhero, Samantha Washington, a former Ranger commander, was sure it was a joke. She sent in a resume anyway.
Will the ad turn out to be somebody’s dumb idea of a prank, a practical stunt, a cunning maniac’s clever trap, or… a real opportunity leading to a difficult and dangerous future occupation?
Now that she has allowed herself be drawn inextricably into a whole chain of strange events, Samantha will have to figure it all out on her own. And she’ll have to do it face to face with her own deepest fears.
As with The Cleansing, Anton Eine approaches the writing of this short story in a slightly different format to the norm. Written largely as an interview between Samantha and the mysterious representative of her potential employer, My New Superjob is full of strikingly vivid images and raw emotions – in just a few pages, it feels like you really get under the skin of Samantha, getting to know her deepest thoughts and fears. In fact, it was a lot deeper and more emotional than I expected from the blurb and title, with Samantha’s experiences feeling particularly poignant given the current situation in the author’s home country. Samantha could be speaking for any one of the men and women fighting there for their freedom, or indeed any soldier in any country. My New Superjob is cleverly written and deeply insightful. I will definitely be picking up the next book in this series when it is released.
POST-MOLECULAR COMFORT FOOD
Public health warning! This story is likely to cause profuse salivation!
Read only on a full stomach!
Michael Turner, the most popular food blogger in the world, has been unable to get his life back on track ever since being overtaken in the ratings by new upstart food designer Amy Williams. And now he is faced with the daunting challenge of taking her on in the annual televised top chef competition and the ignominy of losing his long-held crown to her in front of an audience of millions.
A humorous science fiction tale of delightful dishes and culinary masterpieces that shatters our familiar notions about cooking and explores our relationship with food and each other. Are you still a bit hungry? Good, then dinner is served..!
Pay heed to the public health warning that comes with this book! I did not, instead reading it shortly after consuming my lunch of a well-known meal replacement milkshake. While that did not hit the spot, Post-Molecular Comfort Food certainly did. Although actually, perhaps my lunch choice was an apt one given the tale about to unfold. Who knew that food post-2038 was going to be so incredibly changed!
I really liked Michael and his indignance at being replaced at the top of the blogger charts by rustic, homespun recipes, but it was his young daughter Stacey who really captured my heart and made me chuckle. While My New Superjob was emotionally devastating, Post-Molecular Comfort Food was wonderfully heart-warming, and reading the two books back to back really served to show the range of Anton Eine’s talents.
I have just downloaded Anton’s short story collection, Human Kind, so keep your eye out for a review of that coming fairly shortly. In the meantime, you can find out more about Anton and his writing on his website and on Twitter.