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Cain #1 was a bit of a rush job, so I didn't do a very thorough job of marketing. I did, however, send one copy to Purple Tights ezine, and here's the review. It's more or less a straight summary, but still informative--and the reviewer decided to refer to me by my last name, which is kind of amusing:

When I received this in the mail it ended up sitting along side all the other “literature” I was gonna read ‘later’. Then yesterday afternoon we had a thunder storm causing the power to go out. I decided now would be a good time to get some reading done. I picked up “Cain” and when I read that the editor was still in high school I assumed it was going to be pretty lame. Ironically I found Chen’s writing style was a lot more sophisticated than anything I could come up with – even if I used a thesaurus! 

Chen writes with bluntness truth and brutality. This, by now graduated, teenager is up on her currentaffairs. I could relate to the piece titled “Why I Don’t Like to Write”. I also lost a piece of my creativity – back when I graduated from high school – which I think was the main culprit to my sudden case of writer’s block. I could have written the line, “I subconsciously fear that when I understand every facet of my personality fully, there will be no more of me left…” I use to write all the time. I had notebooks full of my daily routines. After high school I just didn’t have the energy to do it anymore. It wasn’t until I started Purple Tights that I started really writing again. 

“How to Succeed in High School Without Really Learning” is pretty much a slam against students like I was in High School. I things I remember from High School aren’t geometry, history or biology – they’re of skipping school and going to Cambridge and the pranks we pulled. The only reason I actually graduated was because I had a good short term memory. I’d memorize everything the nightbefore and forget it as soon as I finished the test. “…what one might perceive to be learning is nothing more than ingestion, not digestion…only for the purpose of ‘blowing chunks’ on to the  canton sheet for the next test.” 

“War Bad, Peace Good: Why NATO Stinks” is a piece on the crisis on Kosovo. “The government acts not out of compassion for oppressed people, but out of its desire to dominate the international political arena.” 

In “A Day in the Life: Inside a Young Girl’s Brain”, her grandmother had it right when she
questioned girls wearing make-up with “Would you paint a flower?” 

“Losing Sanity and The Trap of Disillusionment” – ‘a virulent sermon on modern-day morality.’ Chen attempts to answer “What is there to learn from life.” 

I found the short story, “Hit” to be one of the better stories I’ve read lately. Again I was stunned with the quality of writing Cain contained. 

 “If I haven’t gone blind yet, I’m not Going to” is an article on growing up the all-american way “in  front of a television set!” 

 There’s some music reviews as well – The Truents, Yo Yo Ma and Ton Koopman, The Bouncing Souls, Southpaw, Ensign, and Electric Frankenstein. 

Cain wraps up with “A Sort of Uplifting Rant on the Future”… “The nice thing about being an individual is possessing experiences, concepts and emotions that allow you find your own way to handle life.”

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