Title: Bookkeeper, Narrator, Gunslinger
Author: Charles Yu
In: Dead Man’s Hand (John Joseph Adams)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Psychics, Weird western, Westerns
Dates read: 7th August 2020
Format: Short story
Publisher: Titan Books
5th sentence, 74th page: And that, to my great and everlasting surprise, is where I come into the story.
They’re the narrator and the bookkeeper for their tiny little town. But, when an accidental slip of the tongue leads them into a gunfight… they also become a gunslinger.
I’ve been reading a lot of western short stories lately. Yet, weirdly enough, this felt like the first story which features a gunslinger. I’m not entirely sure how that hasn’t happened before now. But I definitely loved reading about a gunslinger. The fact that he’s a bit of a dweeby guy who is also the town narrator and bookkeeper… it just made me that, that, that much happier…
From the very beginning, there is something slightly different and weird about the narrator’s talent as a gunslinger. And I loved how the truth behind their new-found talent is slowly revealed. This slow trickling of information is seriously brilliant. And it made it all that much more difficult to actually put the book aside…
I love when the title of a story makes total sense once you read that tale. In this case, the title of this short story is completely self-explanatory and wonderful once you’ve read through it all. I loved that each and every role that the lead character filled was pretty much outlined from the very beginning…