If you haven’t heard of the stories collected here, or of the book Losing Patience itself, that’s a shame, because Faulkner’s work is at once literary and highly entertaining. She has produced a collection of twenty short stories, most of which touch on themes of life and death. Many of them are very dark, written from a killer’s or even a monster’s perspective. Yet, right in the middle, you’ll find a sweet story about an overweight woman’s struggle with food, or one about a racist old lady who is given a shot at redemption.
Faulkner’s attention to detail brings out the characters’ emotions with force. While many of the stories focus on unsympathetic characters, the reader is always able to connect with them nonetheless, due to skillful narration that makes clear their compelling thought processes.
In the story “Chance”, we read about a young man driven to kill his own father. Despite his terrible deed, the main character is in some ways likeable. Another story, “One Chittendon Drive,” switches back and forth between third-person perspective and the narration of a terrible monster. This technique increases the suspense and creatively drives a very creepy story.
All of the stories in Losing Patience are quality. Especially during Halloween season, when many readers are in the mood for scary or supernatural books, this is an excellent choice. You can find this book on Amazon.com, but it may be hard to find in your local bookstore. If you do find it, it will have been worth the search.