Saturday, March 27, 2021

Fiction Review: Whisky for Breakfast

I recently finished a collection of short stories written by a friend of mine, Whisky for Breakfast by Christopher P. Mooney. This was just published at the end of 2020, and I have been looking forward to reading it because he's an excellent writer. 

The topics in these 35 short stories tend to be pretty dark, and they focus on real life, especially the gritty underbelly, with topics including crime, aging, suicide, and more. The collection kicks off with the story of a hard-drinking PI who's helping to investigate the disappearance of a teen girl. That story is sort of typical short-story length, but some of his stories are just a single page, and a few play with ingenious approaches. Characters in this collection are often those whose stories we rarely hear about: criminals, prostitutes, victims of crime, murderers (there is plenty of crime fiction, but the focus is usually on the good guys). One clever, unique story, Con/Sensual, describes an interaction between a prostitute and a john, with both of their thoughts and perceptions provided, side-by-side, down the pages; as you can imagine, their experiences are very different! My favorite story in the collection is Poster Boy, about a young boy who doesn't understand what his parents have been whispering about and finds out during a very embarrassing visit to the school nurse's office for something else. Like the other stories, this one delves into dark subject matter, but I liked the child's perspective and the sense of humor (even laughter) that offset the solemn topic.

Even with the shortest stories, Chris has a real talent for developing characters, and his writing--with lots of dialogue--paints a detailed picture of the setting and situation, even in a short amount of time. My personal tendency is to enjoy the longer stories best. I hate to leave a character just as I'm getting to know him or her! A few of the stories were a bit too dark for me, personally, especially the couple to do with children (other than Poster Boy), but overall, I enjoyed reading the collection. The stories are smart, thought-provoking, and engrossing, and I can't wait to see what Chris writes next.

168 pages, Bridge House 

Disclosure: I purchased this book myself. My review is my own opinion and is not influenced by my relationship with the publisher or author.


Note: This post contains affiliate links. Purchases from these links provide a small commission to me (pennies per purchase), to help offset the time I spend writing for this blog, at no extra cost to you.


Whisky for Breakfast is available from Amazon in paperback and on Kindle.


You can also buy the book through, where your purchase will support the indie bookstore of your choice (or all indie bookstores)--the convenience of shopping online while still buying local:



Or you can order Whisky for Breakfast from Book Depository, with free shipping worldwide.


  1. How fun that your friend wrote this book! Short stories are good because the reader can get so many emotions from one book. These sound good.

    1. Yes, that's a good point, Helen, and there is a wide range in this one.