Seven stories of unusual, unexpected, and sometimes charming connections.

Beginning with “The Day When JoAnna Cowley, Without Warning, Quits Her Job,” about a college professor who may or may not be appropriately paranoid about his colleagues, Kindred Spirits explores the ways in which people develop kinships with others.

In “The Sudden Liberation of Bert Scand,” the title character’s history of bad luck takes a turn for the worse, but he finds comfort in an improbable place. But no such comfort is available for the art gallery owner who is forced to confront an unpleasant truth in “Drunk Monkeys.”

High school student Stephanie faces the possible end of a once strong friendship in “Boy Hungry,” but young Seth, in “There Must Be a Full Moon,” finds a bit of redemption during a night that otherwise disappoints. Similarly, a difficult situation has a surprisingly uplifting twist for the main character in “Exegesis of a Kiss.”

The collection ends with the Christmas novella, “Every Day Is Gravy.” After the death of his wife, retired Alex D’Amato braces for his first Christmas alone. A well-intentioned friend tries to cajole Alex out for some fun, but that fun is tainted by the appearance of Alex’s perceived nemesis.

Two of these stories have previously been published. “The Day When JoAnna Cowley, Without Warning, Quits Her Job” first appeared in The Casserole, and “There Must Be a Full Moon” was originally published in Contraposition.

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Table of Contents

  • The Day JoAnna Cowley, Without Warning, Quits Her Job
  • The Sudden Liberation of Bert Scand
  • Exegesis of a Kiss
  • Drunk Monkeys
  • There Must Be a Full Moon
  • Boy Hungry
  • Every Day Is Gravy