Faith, Fiction, and Bin Laden’s Bald Spot

By Josie E. Davis

How is faith like a bald spot?  How is marriage like a bus tour?  Is confession any good if I don’t believe and what should I believe in, anyway?  Why not, for instance, believe that there is a bald spot shaped exactly like Iceland on the back of Osama Bin Laden’s head, which comes fully equipped with the Vestfjarda Peninsula to the west?

Believing is the specialty of Brian Doyle in his latest short fiction anthology, Bin Laden’s Bald Spot & Other Stories.  Published this fall by Red Hen Press, these twenty five remarkable vignettes are a necessity for any shelf.  Peculiar and confrontational, the book is a world wrapped between the sheets of unforgettable circumstance and it’s a wonder how Doyle has learned to pace himself.  Award winning author and editor of Portland Magazine, Doyle leaves no time for dawdling in these morally off beat and nonsensical tales of what humanity would look like with consequences strung aside.  What really happened to Bernard Francis Cardinal Law, archbishop of Boston and the man who waved a hand at child molestation?  Would anyone notice if you locked your sister’s loser boyfriend in the trunk and went on a cruise with the kids?  How would you react if you discovered your neighbor’s new born baby gently buried in your backyard? Continue reading