Rich and Roulo Volume 2: Ruins is the second short collection of poems and stories from authors Emerian Rich and Heather Roulo. This isn’t your ordinary book, in the editor’s note, Heather Roulo states that this series is set up for the two authors to break away from their past patterns and stay consistent with their ever-changing artistic ideals. This series is all about experimentation and gets proven quickly by the opening act which is a vaudeville style comedy routine between the two authors. If this doesn’t prove that this is not your average 99 cent book on Amazon I don’t know what does.
The stories here are set in exotic locations and ancient times and the characters are dealing with life and relationships in the face of death. First up was a short work by Heather Roulo called Uncovered which is about a man with an exotic fever who reads some ancient hieroglyphs that are about to change his world. This was a nice set up for what was to come in the book and really set the mood. Next up was a poem by Emerian Rich called Goddess which on the surface is about a Goddess looking down upon the people who worship her but there is a deeper meaning here that you will have to find for yourself. I have never been big on poetry but this one was good.
After the poem is a story called The Mummy by Emerian Rich. This is about a young girl in ancient Egypt who was cursed to be a mummy. One man has the ability to help her but he has his own agenda and breaking the curse may not be that easy. I liked how the girl in this one prays to her gods for help and realizes that no help is coming, through her pain she finds strength and becomes a stronger person. The ending to this one was excellent.
The next story is Great Asp by Heather Roulo. This tale combines fantasy and horror and starts on a battlefield where a husband and wife team is about to lead a volunteer battle force against a group of supernatural creatures created by a sorceress. This is not your run of the mill story. It starts with a battle scene, goes into a little love story and then you get psychological horror in the end. This series is about experimentation and it shows in this one because it seems to start in the middle goes back to the beginning and then its like a completely different story by the end. This is a great tale that fans of horror and fantasy will enjoy. Most of all I enjoyed how the wife chooses to honor her husband but sadly things never work out the way you want.
Rich & Roulo: Ruins is a fun, quick read and a nice introduction to two talented authors. To me this book was like a mini literary magazine where the idea was to show the strengths of two authors and how they can use short stories, poems and comedy dialogues to entertain their audiences. I’m hoping to see more volumes in this series and I hope other authors decide to use this same format to introduce themselves to new fans. It’s only 99 cents, take a chance and buy it, you won’t be disappointed.