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Revisiting the Classics (52 Weeks of Books Challenge Week Eight)

Another anthology, y'all. Ready for the review?

Mixed Blessings: Classically Inspired
Deborah A. Porter (editor/compiler), 2015, Breath of Fresh Air Press
Find it where I found it: Link

Mixed Blessings: Classically Inspired is a collection of devotionals, essays, skits, poetry, and short fiction written for the FaithWriters Writing Challenge. The specific rules to the challenge are here (because I would probably spend a couple of paragraphs of this summary explaining them, and I'm pretty sure you're not that worried about them in the first place). The collection is a selection of the Editor's Choice winning entries each week for a quarterly theme. This collection's theme? Classic works of literature. The classics chosen were:
  • This Side of Paradise (F. Scott Fitzgerald)
  • Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
  • Much Ado About Nothing (William Shakespeare)
  • War and Peace (Leo Tolstoy)
  • The Importance of Being Earnest (Oscar Wilde)
  • The Comedy of Errors (William Shakespeare)
  • Great Expectations (Charles Dickens)
  • Persuasion (Jane Austin)
  • Where Angels Fear to Tread (E.M. Forster)
  • Our Mutual Friend (Charles Dickens)
The editor/compiler of this book, and the Mixed Blessings series, is the FaithWriters Weekly Challenge Coordinator, Deborah Ann Porter.

I should also note before we get any further that I've been a member of the FaithWriters website in the past, and that many years ago I did enter several pieces into the Challenge (although they never placed very well, but I'm honestly not sour about it - a lot of them weren't my best work, and they didn't always stick as well to the theme as they should have).

I digress, though. Just suffice it to say that it's been years since I've done much of anything on the website. Also, I'm not endorsing the FaithWriters website with this review, nor the Writing Challenge.

Why I Read It:
When one of your best friends writes a poem that is included in a collection like this and you want to be supportive...

Like I've said before, I love anthologies. I enjoyed the mix in this one in particular - fiction, essays, devotionals, poetry, skits.... It was refreshing, and a great collection to reenergize my desire to read as I headed into month 3 of this challenge. Some had me crying, others had me laughing, and still others left me pondering what they said for quite a while afterwards. In that, it was very successful.

My recommendation, though, is to not push through this one and try to read it in a week (or less, in my case). Each piece in this collection is 750 words or less, and there are 100 pieces, so it is easy to speed through. This one lends itself well to a slow meander, not so much of a gallop. I will probably have to reread because there were so many to absorb in the little time I allowed myself.

Some books are just made for a hot cup of tea (or coffee) and a comfortable spot to curl up in while you slowly read them. Mixed Blessings: Classically Inspired is one of those reads. It won't feel like wasted time.

Well, I didn't feel like it was, anyway.

52 Weeks of Books Challenge? What is that? What book is Cat reviewing next week?


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