Byzantium by Ben Stroud
Byzantium: Book summary and reviews of Byzantium by Ben Stroud
Ancient cities and fallen empires come to life in this masterful collection. In the Byzantine court, a noble with a crippled hand is called upon to ensure that a holy man poses no threat to the throne. On an island in Lake Michigan, a religious community crumbles after an ardent convert digs a little too deep. And the black detective Jackson Hieronymus Burke rises to fame and falls from favor in two stories that recount his origins in Havana and the height of his success in Kaiser Wilhelm's Germany. Ben Stroud's historical reimaginings twist together with contemporary stories to reveal startling truths about human nature across the centuries. In his able hands, Byzantium makes us believe that these are accounts we haven't heard yet. As the chronicler of Burke's exploits muses, "After all, where does history exist, except in our imagination? Does that make it any less true?"
"Starred Review. Stroud follows in the footsteps of the Jim Shepards of the writing world - dexterous magicians who parkour from one time, setting, style, place or tone to another." - Publishers Weekly
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Byzantium Reader Reviews
Ben Stroud's stories have appeared in Harper's, One Story, Electric Literature, and Boston Review, among other magazines, and have been anthologized in New Stories from the South and Best American Mystery Stories. A native of Texas, he now lives in Ohio and teaches creative writing at the University of Toledo.
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