***** The evolution of Chase
After reading two collections of short stories, a novella, and a novel, Chase Williams has become much more than a fictional character. The apparent normality where his stories take place fosters empathy to the point that at times it makes me think that in a town called Tursenia there really is a former Scotland Yard detective committed to solve various crimes.
This collection, however, confirms the trend already seen in “Pull the Trigger” and, if possible, it is a further step towards a more three-dimensional evolution of the character. From the classic British detective who, through the clues and a keen ability to observe details, finds the culprit by means of a process of deduction, we move more and more to a man of action, able to react to extreme situations with resolute behaviours. A man who isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty or to endanger his own safety.
Doing so, Chase is slowly taking the scene, even in short stories of a thousand words. One would almost think that his stay in Italy and contact with typically Italian characters and situations are affecting him and are pulling out an unexpected temperament, which can nothing but make the readers love him.
Having to make a comparison between this collection and the previous two, I immediately notice a huge difference in the mood underlying the various plots. Excessive images aren’t evoked in the reader’s fantasy, but all the stories, even those that don’t deal with serious crimes such as murder or that narrate the most frivolous events, are full of suspense and characterised by a dark, dramatic hint. Mattana’s writing becomes more mature, while her imaginary world expands, becoming more real.
Now I just have to wait for her next work to enjoy another glimpse of it.