Taking more than a leaf or two out of Daphne Du Maurier’s The Birds, this short story places the action in a wealthy gated community in Florida.
Kindergartener, Winnie, finds a tiny white bird with green eyes in the house, but it’s sudden appearance brings out her mother’s bird phobia and past bad experiences.
While Winnie and her father, James, advocate that the bird remains in the house, Sally is adamant it will lead to disaster. As they say, mother always knows best.
The first thing about this short story is it’s misleading length in kindle. About 50% of the file is taken up by The Bird, the rest being devoted to Ms Rose’s back catalogue and an excerpt from a forth coming book. So, ignore the 1 hour + read time when you fire up the ebook. It’s only about a 30 minute read.
I’ve read several books by Willow Rose, in different genres of thriller, horror and urban fantasy, and I have enjoyed them all. However, I couldn’t get behind the premise of this book. As frequent readers of my blog know, I love animals and even have my very own PA (parrot assistant, pictured above), so any story that says birds are scary as it’s sole premise is going to be a very tough sell for me.
The story started off with promise. The bird, a white hummingbird sized creature with a raven beak and green eyes, sounds adorable. Sally, the mother, appears deranged with her constant criticism of her young child’s weight and speech. The family seems further dysfunctional in the fact that James is suffering from crippling work stress, a fact that he doesn’t want to share with his neurotic wife.
Unfortunately, that’s as far as any plot or character development go. Sally’s proven right in her fears, there are several scenes worthy of Birdemic, and it ends with the family bonded by violence.
I understand that many people fear birds. Judging by the afterword, the author is one of them. However, a story needs more than a fearsome object and violence – such as realistic or likable characters, a reason for what is taking place, and action that doesn’t break the willing suspension of disbelief.
I award The Bird…
The Bird is available for $4.07 ebook and $9.99 print book on Amazon.