Arrival of Missives – A Review

Arrival of Missives

Aliya Whitely

Unsung Stories

As usual with Unsung this is a gorgeously produced novella and one that has been written with care. I read Whitely’s The Beauty as an ARC a couple of years ago and fell in love with it. Therefore I’ve both looked forward to this second book and put off reading it. Because what if The Beauty was a one-off?

I’m glad to say that this is just as good, maybe even better, than The Beauty. It has the same lush prose and a weirdness that feels both real and meaningful. Shirley is a student who is determined to get into college and become a teacher so that she can return to her village and assist Mr Tiller with whom she is in love. Tiller has returned from the Great War as “less than a man” and is also several years her senior.

When Shirley approaches him and he reveals the missives of the title things take a weird turn.

This is a slim novel at 120 pages and easily readable in 1 sitting. I loved it.




Published by suttope

Pete Sutton has a not so secret lair in the wilds of Fishponds, Bristol and dreams up stories, many of which are about magpies. He's had stuff published, online and in book form, and currently has a pile of words that one day may possibly be a novel. He wrote all about Fishponds for the Naked Guide to Bristol and has made more money from non-fiction than he has from fiction and wonders if that means the gods of publishing are trying to tell him something. You can find him all over social media or worrying about events he’s organised at the Bristol Festival of Literature. On Twitter he’s @suttope and his Bristol Book Blog is here: He's contributing editor of Far Horizons e-magazine which can be found here:

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