Ernest Dempsey's second collection of short stories The Blue Fairy takes a subject that has been dreaded for centuries - 'Death'. It is one of the few works of fiction, which neither treats the subject as the 'D word' by bringing in fantasies of afterlife nor compromises the solemnity by trying to evaporate the reality of death in humor. Instead, Dempsey explores the many sides to the subject that make the final departure a meaningful reality of existence. Inspired mostly by real life experiences, Dempsey's The Blue Fairy ingeniously integrates dying with living. It is a book for the soul.
Karim Khan, pen named Ernest Dempsey, hails from Hangu, a small town in Pakistan. As a child, he enjoyed two things: The joyful company of his brother and Khan's best friend, Shais; and making airy castles with lots of characters in his mind. At twelve, he started writing detective stories, horror, thrillers, and humor. He has a Masters degree in Geology and one in English Literature.
He has authored four books and, in just the last few years, seen the publication of his poems, essays, short stories, and literary reviews worldwide. He is now the editor-in-chief of the literary magazine Recovering the Self: A Journal of Hope and Healing and also works as the country editor for Pakistan on the celebrated Internet news channel Instablogs. Khan is now looking forward to completing his first novel.
Book Review :
Dedicating this book to his dear aunt who passed away in 1992, Dempsey has written a collection of short stories on the subject of death. Thinking about death tends to make people uncomfortable, for obvious reasons, I would assume. Because of this, I was very curious about what I would find inside these pages. I was actually quite impressed. While the subject is about death, the stories actually led me to develop some thought-provoking questions about life. It is the living who has to deal with the loss of their loved ones, not the dead.
In several of the stories, people vainly try to hold on to something that will connect them with the deceased love one. Sometimes the only thing that they can keep is a memory, other times it might be something that the person had with them when they died. Dempsey adds plenty of twists to the stories to keep them thought-provoking and sometimes a little twisted. That's what made ready "The Blue Fairy" so fun.
In several of the stories in "The Blue Fairy" by Ernest Dempsey, I found myself feeling discomfiture for the characters, especially when they were asked to do something or had to deal with an issue regarding someone's death. It definitely calls to mind my own mortality. I think that readers will really enjoy burying themselves in this book. No pun intended of course.