reviewed by Elizabeth White
One of the great things about reading is that there are always new authors out there for readers to discover. Of course when you do, often the reaction is, “How could I have not known about X? I must find more!” Nik Korpon is one of those authors for me. I only recently discovered him through his collection Baltimore Stories: Volume One, and most recently enjoyed his short “Mori Obscura” in Speedloader. I was therefore overjoyed when I was assigned Korpon’s “This Will All End Well” as my short for this review project.
Though it clocks in at only 8 pages, “This WIll All End Well” packs quite a punch. The story is not easily summarized, in large part because it constantly keeps the reader off balance and summarizing it would ruin some of the changes of direction that occur
. There are only three characters involved, two men and one woman, but just what their relationships are to one another subtly shifts as events unfold.
The tables don’t just turn, they spin like a lazy susan, forcing readers to continuously reassess their perceptions of victim/victimizer and weak/strong. The question of loyalty – to whom is it owed and at what cost – is also explored.
And, for those who believe in the concept, there’s also a hint of karma coming full circle for one of the characters.
All that makes for a somewhat cryptic review I know, but the story deserves to be read fresh, with no foreknowledge of the actual plot.
Rest assured that ultimately “This WIll All End Well” is a wonderfully complex and satisfying story, one which allows readers to take away different feelings and conclusions depending on the individual perspective from which it is approached. Yet no matter what you take away from it this is noir, so despite the title you just know things don’t really end well.