CARRY EACH HIS BURDEN is the debut fiction collection by James Goertel. Drawing from his background as an academic, media freelancer, and screenwriter, Goertel’s writing is at once cinematic, richly crafted, and fiercely original. The five stories within are thematically tied to the collection’s title: Carry Each His Burden. In the title story, the son of a literary giant has carried a family secret for forty years and is now ready to confront it and his father once and for all. In ‘Animal Kingdom’, a pedophile stalks his prey unaware he too is being stalked. ‘Memories Can’t Wait’ delivers a powerful meditation on remembrance, loss and love through one man’s struggle to live with his own heart-wrenching memories before time itself runs out. In ‘Letting the Days Go By’, a man tries to outrun his past, a broken marriage, and the trail of forgotten days rolling out behind him as he takes to the road – one that leads him, ironically, not to a new life, but to a confrontation with the past that still haunts him. And finally, ‘Almost Blue’ invites the reader to eavesdrop on multiple first person accounts of a man who turned the art world on its ear before disappearing into himself just as his most famous painting disappeared, leaving behind a fog of clues, a cloud of suspicion, and a storm of controversy over it and its connection to the death of a brilliant, but troubled musician.
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