Sunday 5 August 2018

Carole's Sunday Review: Roses in December

Author: Matthew de Lacey Davidson

Title: Roses in December
Genre: Fiction, Horror, Short Stories
Pages: 126
Published: Jan. 2018
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)

Roses in December is a short story collection which defies categorisation. Some of the stories are haunting – others are deeply troubling.

A man receives a religious vision in his ordinary back garden; a nuclear physicist in Australia experiences a great surprise where he least expects it; a duct-tape salesman unsettles his faithful customer; Voltaire does not put his best foot forward; someone makes a grim discovery upon waking up in a prison; a psychiatrist does his best to treat a political extremist; a nineteenth-century photographer goes about his usual (and highly unusual) business; and a wealthy neighbourhood in Montreal becomes the scene of an immense and avoidable tragedy.

In twenty-two short (and extremely short) stories and fables, Matthew de Lacey Davidson cuts close to the unintended poetry and grimness of every-day existence, while at the same time enabling the reader to have compassion for those described therein.

There are 22 short stories. Some were very short indeed. Here are my thoughts: 


A cute short story. It was an interesting glimpse into this couple's world. I wish we got more so I could see more of them. 

Quite the Spectacle

A super quick on but pretty good. I had to reread this twice. 

The Road to Hell

That poor guy!! I liked this one but it was sad and I wanted to give someone a kick in the romp. 

There Are No Spirits Here

Amazing. Breathtaking. I had goosebumps. It made me really think. There was a lot of good symbolism for our lives and society. My 2nd favorite overall!


This felt like there was supposed to be more. It just ended. More please!

A Complicated Gesture

Wow. That was good. I was in shock but honestly? It was a great metaphor and everyone should read it. I will not spoil it, but there is a lot to talk about here. This makes you think especially after reading a certain line. SO good and creepy at the same time. My overall favorite. 

Die Ausländerinnen

I truly did not see that coming. This started off barely okay but by the end? I was utterly hooked and in awe. 

A Glorious Debut

Had a hard time getting into this one. Maybe I try it again another time. 

Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother

Not a lot was said but you still feel unsettled and worried. Lots of secrets with that family! I liked it. This was subtle but filled with lots of things there and the reader is left to just imagine and the imagination is so cruel. 

Le Déjeuner de Voltaire

What an interesting piece. I totally did not expect anything that played out. The host was annoying but the ending made me happy but also...sad. Why? I wanted more!! I wanted to see what happened AFTER dinner. 

A Summer Harvest

The moment I read the title I KNEW this one was going to be super dark. And super dark it was. What a horrid world! That poor girl! I will say no more, but this was my 3rd favorite. 

Rose in December

Awweeee this one was sad. Really good and confusing until you realize they tragedy. It did make me shudder. 

The Brick Wall

This one really struck a cord. It really speaks volumes and it made me sad and mad all in one. Lots of feelings and lots to maul over. 

Saved By the Bell

The ending had me in shock. I was unsure as the story went on but then what happened happened (or not happened) and it made everything come together. Very good. 

Splitting Hairs

Too short. I wanted to know if he was going to spill the beans or not!! Too much of a cliff-hanger for my liking. 


An interesting piece. It was dark in its own way but I did chuckle.

Give Yourself a Pat on the Back

Makes you think and feel but it was just okay. 

A Thousand Words

Not what I expected but it was pretty good. 

Drink Me

This was seriously haunting and in a way, I did not expect. Another good one that shines a little light on society. 

A Dream Come True

I read this one a couple of times. The beginning had me curious to see what was going to happen next. Yessss this sure does show how fickle fate is. Holy cannoli that ending!

Your Opinion Matters

Not my favorite, but not bad overall. An interesting story for sure, but I did feel like something was missing. Not sure what. 

Looking Down

What a good way to end this collection. This was very sweet and I liked it a lot. 


This author really, truly has a way with words and presenting a story. These were all really short stories and some of them deserve more! Lots of good ideas for some full-length novels. Overall, I really enjoyed this collection. A good read. I shall stamp this with *does math* I'll round up to 4 stars. 


  1. It has been a long time since I have read a book full of short stories!!! I really enjoy these kind of books!! Noted RiD! :)

  2. I haven't read a horror short story collection in a while, this one sounds like it was good for the most part.

  3. It's hard to find a good short story collection but this sounds pretty solid.

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

  4. This sounds like a good colleciton of stories. Glad you enjoyed it!

  5. Glad you enjoyed this one... I don't think it's for me, tho!



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