“Eighth Sleeper of Ephesus”

Harun, Adrienne. “The Eighth Sleeper of Ephesus.” The King of Limbo. New York: Overlook Press, 2001.

This is such an interesting story! Frank Cocokowski is a reclusive and strange man. Alone with his thoughts in a big house he barely leaves, Frank begins a slow descent into madness. His only link to the outside world is by reading his estranged son’s small town newspaper. An article in the Salish Bay newspaper prompts Frank to write a letter of outrage to the editor. Only Frank knows nothing of Salish Bay or its problems. He poses as Andrew Glenn, a one-time resident of Salish Bay opposing the construction of a new development. His letter is so well articulated he soon gains a following and stops the construction. He then receives a weekly column in the paper. Needless to say, things become more complicated for Frank.

Best line, “Frank’s heart beat as mercilessly as if he had just entered the town naked on a horse” (p 71).

Reason read: June is short story month and this is the very last shorty I will be reading!

Story trivia: The Eighth Sleeper of Ephesus won the Nelson Algren Award.

Author fact: Everyone describes Harun’s writing as elegant and beautiful. I would say haunting because they creep up on you, silent as a ghost, and leave you with a shiver.

BookLust Twist: from More Book Lust in the chapter called “Good Things Come in Small Packages” (p 103).

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