Friday, February 10, 2023

Literary Short Story Anthology Review: The Man Who Screams at Nightfall and Other Stories

Today, I have a short story collection in our book review spotlight. Learn about The Man Who Screams at Nightfall and Other Stories, read my thoughts on the anthology, learn about author Rush Leaming and be sure to enter for a chance to win a prize in the book tour giveaway at the end of this post.

The Man Who Screams At Nightfall… and other stories by Rush Leaming Banner

The Man Who Screams At Nightfall…
and other stories

by Rush Leaming

January 16 - February 10, 2023 Virtual Book Tour

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about the book

The Man Who Screams At Nightfall… and other stories by Rush Leaming


Book Details:

Genre: Literary Fiction
Published by: Bridgewood Publishing
Publication Date: November 2022
Number of Pages: 150
ISBN: 0999745670 (ISBN-13: 9780999745670)







Thailand. The Congo. Greece. Spain. America…

Four continents and 40+ years in the making.

The Man Who Screams At Nightfall is a landmark collection of short stories depicting a young man on a classic voyage of self-discovery, scouring the earth in search of some purpose in life.

From childhood to parenthood and everything in between—these tales are at times raw and unflinching, at other times poignant and moving.

Get ready for a literary journey unlike any you’ve experienced before.

WARNING: Some of these stories contain strong language, depictions of graphic violence, and sexual situations.


Praise for the Book

"A powerful, gritty, and exquisitely written anthology —not to be missed."
-J. Miller, Reader's Favorite

"A short story collection that excels in its sense of literary psychological growth and discovery. Libraries looking for interconnected short stories that represent life journeys and revelations will find The Man Who Screams At Nightfall...and other stories an appealing acquisition that promises much fodder for discussion to book club readers interested in fictional blends of psychological and social revelation."
Midwest Book Review, D. Donovan

"Sharply observed, nuanced, precise, and morally challenging..."

-The Prairies Book Review

"Leaming's light hand with dialogue and keen sense of human psychology create a book that highlights weighty issues by putting a compassionate human face on human struggles. Sharp, inventive, and deeply moving: a fine literary collection."
-Book View

"Without a lengthy description of the characters, just enough to provide the imagery necessary to identify them, he catches and holds the reader's attention like no other I've experienced in the hundreds of books and stories I've read over the years."

-Reader's Favorite, L. Allen
my review

The Man Who Screams at Nightfall and Other Stories Offers Stories That Will Stay with the Reader. This anthology may be a short, easy-to-read collection of short stories--but it holds a heavy volume of content to ponder and consider long after each story concludes. The collection reads like a memoir, yet the author leaves an air of mystery around the storyteller in most of the stories. Sometimes he has no identified name or hometown--and pieces of his past (and present) seem vague. Despite this, the author's writing style still creates a very engaging character and a full, thought-provoking story in each collection piece. 


The Content of this Collection may Not Be Everyone's Cup of Tea. This anthology may well be the most violent, sexually oriented, psychologically disturbing collection of short stories I have read from start to finish in many years. Having said that--this is probably the most thought-provoking collection of short stories I have ever read. With every dark, disturbing aspect of each story--there are glimmers of morality and goodness. The author does an incredible job transporting the readers to various global settings and situations that are immediately real and frighteningly relatable. While this collection certainly needs the content warning--it is a collection that could certainly be read and discussed by an open-minded book club or group.  

Would I Recommend The Man Who Screams at Nightfall and Other Stories by Rush Leaming? My answer to this question changed as I read each story! After the title story, I was interested and engaged. A couple of the following stories were a little out of my content comfort zone--but there was still a drawing force that kept me engaged in the author's scenes and his characters' outcomes and revelations. As I finished the book, I was still unsure if I would recommend it or not! The content lingers--from the violence and sexual situations to the psychological implications. If you are looking for a happy, cute little memoir-like anthology--this is not that story collection. If you are looking for a thought-provoking walk through the darkness with unexpected stories and strong story writing, this collection is one for your reading list.


read an excerpt

…I could see the glow of a fire up ahead of us, and as we reached the mango tree, Pumbu motioned for me to stay low and follow him along a small wall of honeysuckle bushes. We crouched down, and from our hiding place, I saw Kachamba furiously pacing back and forth in his yard in front of a small bonfire. He swung his arms wildly in the air as if he was fighting off something that was falling on him. He dropped to his knees and then suddenly sprang three feet off the ground. Then he began to dance, swaying and spinning his body so close to the fire that I was certain he was going to fall in. All the while he screamed and shouted deep into the empty black night.

He spoke in a dialect that I couldn’t understand, so I had to ask Pumbu to tell me what he was saying. I asked him many questions: Why was he doing this? Who was he speaking to? Was he drunk? What was going on? Pumbu patiently explained to me that no, he was not drunk, and that he really didn’t know who he was speaking to, but that Kachamba’s wife had left him a few years ago, run off with another man and taken their children, and that ever since, he had not been right in the head. He was not from this village and had been kicked out of all the other places he had lived. He came here only because Kachamba’s father, the chief of Kitengo’s uncle, had once saved the life of the chief’s father (Kachamba’s uncle) and so the chief had to let him stay to repay that old favor. It was all very complicated, Pumbu said, and he didn’t fully understand it himself.

I was hardly listening, instead transfixed and horrified by what I saw. Spinning, swirling, shouting, and screaming—Kachamba’s face, so calm and happy as I had seen it earlier that day, was now knotted and twisted like a grotesque carnival mask, like some gargoyle sprung from the lowest depths of hell. The glow of the fire cut fierce shadows and gorges in his face, adding to the haunting vision that I saw.

For a long while, Pumbu and I hid behind the honeysuckle bushes and watched Kachamba shriek and wail and try to push back the night, until suddenly, all at once, he just stopped. Suddenly, he just stood still and quiet and stared at the sky. I followed his gaze and saw another shooting star. When I looked back, Kachamba had disappeared.

“Is that it?” I asked.

“That’s it,” said Pumbu. “He usually only does this for an hour or so.”

“And he does this every night?”

“Almost,” said Pumbu and yawned. “Mmm. I’m tired. I think I am going to go home.”

We left the bushes, went past the mango tree, and said good night. I walked home alone, both exhilarated and troubled by what I had seen.

I entered my room and prepared for bed, but long after I had extinguished my petrol lantern, I lay there staring into the darkness. I couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned. It wasn’t that unusual—I noticed that it had been happening a lot lately, that I couldn’t sleep. I got up and found the bottle of Johnnie Walker and knocked back a tall glass until at last I was floating, and at last, my eyes did shut…


Excerpt from The Man Who Screams At Nightfall... and other stories by Rush Leaming. Copyright 2022 by Rush Leaming. Reproduced with permission from Rush Leaming. All rights reserved.

buy the book

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about the author

Rush Leaming

RUSH LEAMING has done many things including spending 15+ years in film/video production working on such projects as The Lord of the Rings films. His first novel, Don't Go, Ramanya, a political thriller set in Thailand, was published in the fall of 2016. His second novel followed suit in the summer of 2018, entitled The Whole of the Moon, set in the Congo at the end of the Cold War. 2021 saw the 5-star reception of his crime thriller Dead Tree Tales. His short stories have appeared in Notations, 67 Press, Lightwave, 5k Fiction, and The Electric Eclectic.

He has lived in New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Zaire, Thailand, Spain, Greece, South Carolina, England, and Kenya.



connect with the author
BookBub - @RushLeaming
Instagram - @RushLeaming
Twitter - @LeamingRush
Facebook - @RushLeamingStories


enter the giveaway

This is a giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Tours for Rush Leaming. See the widget for entry terms and conditions. Void where prohibited.



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