Unwelcome Bodies is a collection of, well, frankly, utterly unnerving tales. It’s rare for me to review SFF and rare for me to review short stories, so a combination of both is practically unhead of. However, Jennifer Pelland’s collection looked to be full of intriguing ideas and I wanted to try something new.
Pelland presents a range of scenarios that range from slightly eerie to full blown frightening. From the story about the woman whose sister has been sewn into her body to the man on a quest to find the key to eternal life, these are thought provoking stories of what life in the future could be like. I found myself flitting from repulsion to fear to awe as I worked my way through the volume.
Each story is a relatively short length and easily digestible. All are followed by notes from the author, divulging ‘the story behind the story’. The volume is well narrated by Linette Geisel, who applies a steady pace and clear enunciation, making this a relatively easy listen for such a disturbing volume. If it lacks in one thing, it’s quite possibly in the editorial of the narration. There were times when the end of a story and the beginning of the ‘notes’ ran so closely together it took me a moment to realise that the story had finished. However, this is a minor complaint and only occurred a small number of times across the seven hour volume.
As a fan of John Wyndham and Isaac Asimov I often wonder why I don’t really consider myself a science-fiction fan these days. Reading/listening to a volume such as this makes me realise that this isn’t a genre I should close myself off to. This was one of the most intriguing volumes of short stories I’ve encountered. Pelland is an excellent storyteller with a vivid imagination. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her writing or to look out for future volumes.Note: I received this audiobook from Audiobook Jukebox in exchange for a fair and honest review. I did not receive any further compensation. All views are my own.