The World in An Eye by Maroula Blades, published by Chapeltown Books (UK), is an eclectic collection. It ardently and boldly tackles issues that plague our societies.
Presenting diverse flash fiction stories set in America, England, Germany, Italy and other places where poignancy, rawness and sensitivity are propelled to the foreground.
This evocative compilation also thrusts taboo topics out from the fringes into the spotlight. Here, they explore and expose the lives of those not fed with golden spoons.
The World in An Eye shines a light on the neglected lives of children, women and men, who bravely inhabit the outskirts. Most of the characters are after a communal goal. They long for a semblance of hope, serenity, understanding, and shelter.
In an ideal world, everyone is welcome to sit at the table, regardless of colour, creed or race. Until we achieve this, stories about adversity will keep airing on the world stage. The World in An Eye supports that tone. Change needs to come!
Here is an exegesis on The World in an Eye from the RW Spryszak, the managing editor of Thrice Fiction.
The World in an Eye Maroula Blades – 2020 Chapeltown Books, Manchester, UK
It is not impossible to regret facts. And their presentation can take many forms. It can be in great, weighty novels, or the power-packed phrases that paint a story in flashes. In “The World in an Eye” we have the latter.
The introduction to this compact collection of flash fiction tells us quite openly that this is the result of “listening to and living with the powerless.”
This gives voice to, or to be more exact, is the voice of those who are central to every part of the world but occupy only the margins according to the opinion of the highly privileged or the simply careless. Here are the voices of the disabled, the evicted tenants of a building barely worth fighting for in the first place (“For adoption, we are too old. But not too old for the filth and swank of the city’s keen-eyed sex predators.”), and a woman whose body may have failed her though her memories linger in “Niesha’s Blackened Lips.”This lifetime of observations reported back to us by Blades is gentle enough at first.
“Waiting” is a simple study any writer would make from the delicious position of watching the world with the eye of an artist, but by the conclusion we note the observer is also the searcher. From there we are taken to what feels like a chaotic dream but becomes the account of an assault on a public street in “The Papaya Stall.”
Here there are two unfortunate and somewhat disturbing women at the top of the stairs. And over there a reflection on the value of personal attachment (“What lies behind the power of friendship and what principle binds it? In Brian’s case it was flakey, like pastry.”)
This short collection could be read quickly from stop to stop on the bus to work. But that would be a mistake exactly because there are facts in the world that are regrettable however much we need to be reminded they exist beyond what one would stereotypically think of when considering the other.
About the Author
Maroula Blades is an Afro-British multifaceted artist living in Berlin. She was nominated for the Amadeu Antonio Prize 2019 for her educational multimedia project “Fringe”. The project was supported by the Swiss Jan Michalski Foundation for Literature. She was the first runner-up in the 2018 Tony Quagliano International Poetry Award, and the winner of Erbacce Poetry Prize 2012. Works were published in The Caribbean Writer, Thrice Fiction, The Freshwater Review, Words with Jam, Midnight & Indigo, Abridged, The London Reader, Stories of Music Vol. 2, So It Goes, Newfound Journal, and by Peepal Tree Press among others. Regularly, Ms. Blades gives bilingual (English & German) poetry workshops in Berlin schools and high schools. Her multimedia projects have been presented at many international literary festivals in Germany., Chapeltown Books (UK) has just released her flash fiction collection The World in An Eye, available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
More information about Maroula Blades’ works can be found on this website.