Reviewed by Racheal
About the Anthology
Never Too Late is a collection of nine stories featuring characters over the age of fifty - stories of travel, finding your purpose, of friendships past and present, and of love. Never Too Late brings you to a world where gender sees no borders, where the only way you're identified is by the goodness of your heart.
Trapped by Ofelia Gränd
Ashes and Alms by A.M. Leibowitz
The Palette - A Lifetime by Caraway Carter
Clara by Hans M Hirschi
To Be Sure by Debbie McGowan
Nectar by Laura Susan Johnson
Moving by J P Walker
Cue The Music by Alexis Woods
Ocean of Tears by Phetra H. Novak
I have never been given the opportunity to review an Anthology before and was very honored to review this one. Reading these short stories from the many authors brought to light the struggles that were once placed upon our LBGTQ community and the struggles that we still see happening today. As well as, some that were just stories of love, muses, and struggles of periods long forgotten.
Debbie McGowan showed me the strength of a woman who raised two boys on her own in a time period where it was unheard of to leave your husband. That in itself showed me the strength of the character that she wrote about in her short story "To Be Sure." Saorla's character was written so powerfully in the eyes of the author even though the character herself didn't see it. She was a single mother that left an abusive husband and stayed with a loving woman. Although, it saddens me that both Sarola and Aileen had to hide their true feelings. Their strength is what carried them through the years. Such an amazing and truthful read according to the times.
Nectar by Laura Susan Johnson was truly an eye-opening read for me as a reader and as a woman. I think as an American woman I tend to take for granted a lot of the freedoms that I have, complain about things that other women in different countries would consider trivial. As the story of Negdar was laid bare, I struggled with the character's life story. I tried to see her life through the author’s telling of it. Parts of it broke me to pieces while the strength of her character throughout made me proud to be a woman. She loved hard through the toughest of times. Found her happiness in a woman that understood her. Made long journeys, lost loved ones and in the end, was able to look back on her life and still find happiness at the end.
In JP Walkers short story " Moving by" I got an insight into the character of Maggie. I was able to connect with the feelings of confusion when she heard of her first love’s death. Although I have never experienced the death of a first love, I have experienced the feeling of loss. The what if's, the could have been’s. That time in your life of sitting back and reflecting on the past. But just like Maggie, once that journey is over and you take a look around at the future that you have made with your partner all the what if's and the could have been’s disappear. Because what you have already built is what was meant to be.
Cue The Music by Alexis Woods...
In this powerful story of a man who drowns his sorrows in a friend's bar while playing his guitar and singing away his pain. For Ty Anderson, this is how he manages his feelings after a painful break-up from his husband Mark. While his husband sits at the bar struggling with the same despair. Listening to the love of his life pour out his heart. This is a story of crossroads for these married men. A powerful realization of where they both went wrong in their marriage. A time period where a lot of married couples face. I was overcome with many emotions as I sat and read their incredible story. So many couples take for granted what they have and at times divorce may sound so easy; it's the hard road at times that makes a marriage strong. Not to say that divorce isn't necessary in some cases but with their stories like Ty and Marks it gives me hope with mine.
"Ocean of Tears" by Phetra H Novak is the last story in this beautiful collaboration. It is a remarkable tale of an older musician who has lost his inspiration to write music. Through the 53-year-old character of Karl Meeke, I was able to feel his struggles as he embarked on his journey to self-understanding, just by being around a younger man. A man who was so different from himself but yet was able to see Karl for the man he truly was. Although Karl struggled with their ages and occupations he found not only his muse for his writings but a love he never knew he wanted or needed. This story was so very inspirational. A great story to end such a remarkable masterpiece of writings by so many authors.
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