Summer is traditionally the time for light reading. Mark and I would like to apologize for upsetting the order of things: these six stories definitely won’t give you a mindless dose of beach-blanket blah.

We are proud to present in this, our July offering, a major serving of big entertainment in small packages—from the sublime (She Had to Take Off Her Glasses) to the wryly, religiously ridiculous (Rapture). From the weird (Skin Deep), through the menacing (Death Angels), to the downright creepy (Bill Leap Was His Name). And then there’s Three Soldiers, simple, topical and heartbreaking, which in my opinion stands alone.

Take a tankard of lemonade to the computer and turn on your tanning light, if you wish. But don’t expect flimsy summer dreams. Issue 18 of Vestal Review is built to last.

© 2004 Sue O’Neill

Rapture by Gayle Brandeis

Death Angels by Rusty Barnes

She Had to Take Off Her Glasses by Alan Beard

Skin Deep by Robert Boswell

Three Soldiers by Bruce Holland Rogers

John Smith Was His Name by Marcia Aldrich