Arsenic Soup for Lovers Review
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If you’ve had enough of the sweet and sappy romance stories in your book collection and you’re looking for a bit of satire, then Arsenic Soup for Lovers: When Chicken Soup Doesn’t Work will meet your sardonic needs.

This collection of stories focuses on the more sinister side of love and what happens when various relationships are tested by spousal boredom, mid-life crises, obsession, and more. Many of the characters struggle with what remains of their relationships and the decision to end things (in more ways than one), and they often come up with interesting and comical ways to deal with their problems. However, many of the stories have the same voice. By the end, the characters begin to sound the same, and it gets hard to tell them apart, especially with a great number of plot lines focusing on cheating lovers and scorned spouses.

My favorite stories in the collection are the ones that deviate from the usual story arc—plots that focus on different themes and therefore feel fresh and thought-provoking while still being humorous. For example, I found “Knees” to be particularly funny and interesting because, in just a few short pages, it tugs at something deeper within its characters. It gnaws at the edges of the human psyche enough to beg the question of what really makes people tick. Others, such as “Valentine’s Day Update,” are sweet enough in their own way to balance out the acidic tone of other stories and show us that perhaps second chances at love do exist.

The punchy descriptions are full of funny quips and remarks. They’re short and to the point, with little fluff, which lends to the tongue-in-cheek dialogue. Anyone who loves a good dose of sarcasm will thoroughly enjoy these stories. They’re extremely short—most of them just a page long or less. And while the concise length sometimes leaves room for plot holes, those who easily become bored by meandering descriptions will appreciate the stories’ focus on the meat and potatoes of the action.

Arsenic Soup for Lovers is great for anyone on the go—easily read in short bursts or in a leisurely afternoon. It’s a colorful collection of writing for anyone who’s craving some short and sweet amusement.

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