You could have been someone, you could have been a contender, yet instead you ended up here, a dishwasher at the Flamingo Hotel. From the death of your mother, to homelessness, to insanity, and back again, to an encounter with an American serial killer, a lover affair with a performance artist, to the loss of your foreskin, to living in a shed, and certain bum operations, you have only ever wanted one thing. To find someone worse off than yourself.

Author: Drew Gummerson
Format Reviewed: Paperback
Print Length: 221 pages
Publisher: Bearded Badger Publishing (2020)

Leave any assumptions about Seven Nights at the Flamingo Hotel firmly in the foyer.

No, really.

Bearded Badger Publishing’s debut publication is hilarious, tragic, and downright bizarre – all at the same time.

And for the most part, it works. I can’t remember the last time I laughed, cocked an eyebrow, and experienced such solemnity within a single page or two.

Author Drew Gummerson has created a truly unique piece of literature, though not without its issues.

Read the full review >

Update 16/04/2021: Tales from Absurdia will be covering mostly indie & self-published books. However, there are some non-indie books I wish to share with my audience.

Exciting news!

As of January, 2021, Tales from Absurdia will be pivoting reviews towards the independent and self-publishing sectors.

More and more authors are looking beyond the traditional means of publishing. So, I want to highlight the success stories in the indie and self-publishing spheres, whilst helping readers navigate what is fast-becoming a saturated marketplace.

This will take the form of informative articles, honest reviews, helpful resources, and hopefully a few interviews along the way.

2020 Reading Review

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards”
Søren Kierkegaard

To begin this 2020 Reading Review, it’s worth acknowledging that I read more books in a 12-month span than ever before.

Obviously, blogging was a key factor, as was being on furlough, which – trust me – was not the jolly holiday many like to make out.

I am, for the most part, really proud of this – especially because most were pretty good! I do have a fair bit of work to do in order to increase the diversity on my bookshelf, however.

From starting Tales from Absurdia to writing my 2020 Reading Review, it has been quite the trip! I’ve met some great people online and, in many ways, both reading and blogging has kept me sane during what has been a challenging year.

And for those who are reading this, please accept my most sincere thanks for taking time to visit my blog. It’s humbly appreciated.

John @ TfA

No, the new parent life hasn’t driven me bonkers. Hear me out.

Pewp is a children’s book, written and illustrated by Kenton Blythe and Nathan C. Younger. It’s about the titular wizard named Pewp, who’s exceptionally talented but ridiculed due to his name.

He is, after all, called Pewp.

It’s an interesting premise and there are some great lessons here for children. Don’t mock the person with the different-sounding name, for a start.

But what caught my attention with Pewp is its publishing history. 

It’s a children’s book, self-published exclusively through crowdfunding instead of traditional publishing avenues.

Find out why >

Leonard and Hungry Paul Review


Leonard and Hungry Paul is the story of two quiet friends trying to find their place in the world. It is about those uncelebrated people who have the ability to change the world, not by effort or force, but through their appreciation of all that is special and overlooked in life.

Author: Rónán Hession
Format Reviewed: Paperback
Print Length: 245 pages
Publisher: Bluemoose Books (2019)

Ronan Hession’s debut novel is a delight.

A tale of two seemingly unremarkable people, the novel’s introverted protagonists spin entirely on their own axis to the rest of society.

And yet, despite this, both Leonard and Hungry Paul – the latter’s hungriness remains to be established – are really quite relatable.

Read the full review >

Stuck at Home Book Tag (1)

As we head into the final quarter of the year, the Stuck at Home book tag seemed like a great opportunity to reflect upon the year.

I’ve actually been on furlough for most of the year, and whilst this hasn’t been ideal, I’m thankful for it. It gave me the opportunity to reflect upon what I value most, what makes me happy (or unhappy!), and the direction I want to head in as I approach my 30s.

It gave me the nudge to start this blog, which has been a revelation. It helped me find myself again. 

I can share my love of literature and philosophy, whilst meeting some truly wonderful people online – especially Twitter.

Anyhow, thank you to Nikki Swift Reads for tagging me in this Book Tag! Do go and check her blog out – it’s a vibrant website with some really great content! Also, full credit to Ellyn @Allonsythornraxx as the original creator of this book tag!

Read more >