Feeding the Ducks and Other Stories (by Della Galton)

Having read and enjoyed a couple of non-fiction books by Della Galton, and a handful of short stories published in women’s magazines, I was delighted to find a short story collection of hers available for free download on my Kindle nearly two years ago. I finally started reading them just recently. Short stories were exactly what I wanted to read in a busy period.

And, indeed, I enjoyed them very much. Each story features likable people in believable situations which generally turn out to be not quite as they first appear. They are officially classed as ‘twist in the tail’ stories, but whereas that genre can be quite spooky or unpleasant, these are all delightfully gentle stories where most of the endings made me smile.

My only problem with this book is that it’s so short. There are five short stories in all, including the title one (‘Feeding the Ducks’). I hadn’t noticed that when I started reading, although it turns out that there’s a useful index at the beginning. Thus it was a disappointment when I was only a little over 52% through to realise that I had come to the end: the rest of the book contained an introduction to Della Galton’s other work, with a short bio and advertising. I don’t mind this kind of thing at the end of a book in principle, but to take up almost half of it was annoying - and far too much to read on the Kindle.

Since I didn't pay anything for this book, I can hardly complain about its length from my personal point of view. But as it’s now 1.53 from Amazon, this seems a bit overpriced to me for just five short stories, and I can’t give it more than a guarded recommendation, despite the high quality of each of the stories individually. They are not, as far as I can tell, available in print form.

Still, they made excellent reading, and I may well re-read them at some point.

Review by copyright 2014 Sue's Book Reviews

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