Deception is not only the name of this book, or the title of one of the tales inside. It might be said that deception is also the central theme of the hundreds of short stories John M. Floyd has written and published over the past eighteen years. Many are mysteries and some represent other genres (fantasy, Western, romance, etc.), but all of them involve trickery and suspense and Hitchcockian plot reversals. In many ways, this collection picks up where his previous book, Clockwork, left off. Here are thirty more delicious stories of mystery, intrigue, and betrayal. And although Floyd has often said he loves twist endings, the surprises here are not limited to the final pages or paragraphs: they also happen throughout the stories. If his fiction has one common denominator, it is the uncertainty built into each tale, that tingling feeling of not knowing which direction the plot is about to take. In addition to all the standalone adventures, this collection features (as did the first three books) several lighthearted mysteries starring retired schoolteacher Angela Potts and small-town sheriff Charles Chunky Jones. But whether the setting is the Deep South or deep space, the characters are touch-me real and the plots are clever and fast-moving. If you are looking for pure entertainment, these stories are for you. Prepare to be deceived . . .
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