Erik Hofstatter keeps creating great stories! He writes about relevant social issues, which enhances his terrifying tales. The cover is pretty cool, too.
Irena (mother) and Aleš (son) are two Syrian refugees living in Dover, England. Aleš has never seen an ocean before, especially not one that glows purple when he's close. Aleš is a lonely 13-year-old boy who meets Enola, a strange young girl who purloins his heart. This is a tale of first love.
The Crabian Heart grabs you by the pincers and doesn't let go until the last page. The reader can sense the impending danger, and that doom becomes more evident with every turn of the page. Erik can scare you with a short story or a novella. He is great with both forms. The reader can never predict the outcome of Erik's stories. When you are expecting a right jab, Erik hits you with a left hook right in the feels. The Crabian Heart will creep up on you in the best way. I will never look at crabs the same way again.
The characters are memorable. The plot is well crafted. The dialogue feels real. It felt like I was on the beach with the characters.
The bonus story Fountain of Drowned Memories is great, too! It's about an older man dealing with dementia.
5/5 stars! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐