“…M. Duda accomplishes in a few pages what can take other authors in hundreds. He crafts believable characters, locations, and scenarios, then breathes life into them. He wields the absolute power an author has over his creations: The same life he creates is just as easily snuffed out. The message is grim and the stories are dark, yet there is a glimmer of hope in each story; a spark that shows that selflessness and acceptance can help others find a better place, even when it’s already too late for you.” – The US Review of Books
In three stories, M. Duda uses supernatural and science fiction elements to tell a larger tale about humanity.
The first story in his collection, “A Sarjeta,” follows an impoverished Portuguese man with one simple dream: he wants to taste meat. Although Leandro also has larger goals of becoming a famous artist, his hunger and poverty are always at the forefront of his mind. When he forms a relationship with the wrong person, Leandro will realize that incredible evil exists just across the street.
The middle story, “Good-bye, Sweet Mercury,” takes a turn away from the horrific and focuses on a father’s love for his daughter. In this short and simple tale, the father stands at a precipice in his life. He doesn’t want to leave his little girl, and he will have to make a big decision about his future.
The last story, “Yesterday Never, Tomorrow and Today,” furthers M. Duda’s theme of metamorphosis and introduces an indentured farmer who is trying to make up for his criminal past. In a future civilization, the farmer faces harsh truths about himself.
Through these glimpses into different worlds, M. Duda tells three intricate, compelling tales of transformation.