by Elizabeth Stott
published by Nightjar Press
It takes skill to create a sense of unease, to permeate the everyday with the surreal, but that’s what Elizabeth Stott has done with this story, published as a chapbook this month by the small, independent Nightjar Press.
Nightjar has been issuing chapbooks for a while now, curated by Nicholas Royle, the editor of the Best British Book of Short Stories 2013, pub by Salt. A novelist himself, and a lecturer at Manchester Uni’s Creative Writing department, he has the knack of recognising a good story and a good story-teller.
This one concerns a woman who thinks she has found her soul-mate - a very private, rather secretive man who has finally given her the key to his flat - the first woman to be given that honour. But, visiting his flat for their usual Saturday night meal together, she finds someone, or something, else in her place.
Elizabeth Stott is a skilled author of short fiction. She is a scientist as well as an author and she admits to having a dark sense of humour. Elizabeth captures exactly the quiet horror of what begins to unfold. The prose is almost clinical - definitely a case where less is more.
Elizabeth also has a 5 star collection of short stories on Amazon Kindle called This Heat, currently on special offer.