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review 2018-12-12 00:51
Earth, Air, Fire, Water: Tales from the Eternal Archives #2
Earth, Air, Fire, Water (Tales from the Eternal Archives, #2) - Jane Lindskold,Linda P. Baker,Tanya Huff,Margaret Weis,Carrie Channell,Edward Carmien,Mark Garland,Nancy Varian Berberick,Robyn McGrew,Janet Pack,Jean-Francois Podevin,Bruce Holland Rogers,Nina Kiriki Hoffman,Donald J. Bingle,Kristine Kathryn Rusch,Lawren

The short story anthology Earth, Air, Fire, Water edited by Margaret Weis, the second and last collection of the Tales from the Eternal Archives, contains thirteen stories of varying quality loosely connected to one another through the titular mystical library.  But unlike the first collection all thirteen stories were all fantasy genre.

 

The best story of the collection was “Strange Creatures” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, which followed Chief Dan Retsler investigating the latest in a series of animal mutilations but suddenly finds out that the latest animal might be linked to mythical “selkies”.  The next two best stories were “How Golf Shaped Scotland” by Bruce Holland Rogers, a fun and good natured short story about how a game of golf created Scotland’s iconic coastline, and “An Elemental Conversation” by Donald J. Bingle, a conversation between a Reverend and his friend during their weekly chess game about how the news of non-human intelligent life affects religion with a twist ending.

 

The two worst stories of the collection were “Water Baby” by Michelle West, which followed the life of a young woman who is emotionally connected to the ocean and how it affects her and others, and “Sons of Thunder” by Edward Carmien, in which a djinn recounts his time as a follower of Jehua and how his brother and his tribe converted to the new faith leaving him alone.  These were the two “worst” examples of six stories that were not really good even though they had interesting concept, but just bad execution ruined them.  An interesting facet was the unevenness of the number of stories for each element covered in the book, with Air only have one while Earth had five and Water had four and Fire starting off the book with three.

 

The thirteen stories that make up Earth, Air, Fire, Water were a mixed bag of quality from the excellent to downright disappoint, just like every other anthology collection that has been published.  However I will be honest in how well I rated this book given how poorly it began and ended.

 

Individual Story Ratings

Burning Bright by Tanya Huff (2/5)

The Fire of the Found Heart by Linda P. Baker (2/5)

The Forge of Creation by Carrie Channell (2/5)

How Golf Shaped Scotland by Bruce Holland Rogers (4/5)

The Giant’s Love by Nina Kiriki Hoffman (3/5)

Family Secrets by Robyn McGrew (3.5/5)

Dvergertal by Nancy Vivian Berberick (2/5)

An Elemental Conversation by Donald J. Bingle (4/5)

Water Baby by Michelle West (1/5)

Only As Safe by Mark A. Garland and Lawrence Schimel (3/5)

Out of Hot Water by Jane Lindskold (3.5/5)

Strange Creatures by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (5/5)

Sons of Thunder by Edward Carmien (1/5)

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review 2018-12-11 04:32
Beauty and Beastly by Melanie Karsak
Beauty and Beastly: Steampunk Beauty and the Beast (Steampunk Fairy Tales) - Melanie Karsak

A beautifully written steampunk retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

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review 2018-12-06 04:36
Frostbitten Fairy Tales by Melanie Karsak
Frostbitten Fairy Tales: A Christmas Fairy Tale Collection - Melanie Karsak

TITLE:   Frostbitten Fairy Tales: A Christmas Fairy Tale Collection

 

AUTHOR:  Melanie Karsak

_____________________________

 

This is a lovely collection of beautifuly written short stories that involve the Christmas season in the author's steampunk London universe.  These fairy tale re-tellings are fun to read and aren't so dark and grimy as many other urban fantasy stories.

 

 

______________________________

DETAILS:

 

"** SPECIAL HOLIDAY COLLECTION **

This Christmas season, dive into New York Times bestselling author Melanie Karsak's fairy tale world. In this magical holiday collection, fight Yuletide monsters, take on a jealous Snow Queen, ride the skies in an airship, and tinker some magical gnomes. Join Clemeny, Elyse, Lily, and Scarlette in these winter wonderlands.

This collection includes re-imagined classic fairytales such as Red Riding Hood, the Snow Queen, the Elves and the Shoemaker, and a new classic from Melanie Karsak's award-winning steampunk universe.

INCLUDED IN THIS COLLECTION
Peppermint and Pentacles: A Red Riding Hood Retelling
Ice and Embers: A Snow Queen Retelling
Chasing Christmas Past: A Steampunk Christmas Novella
Goblins and Snowflakes: An Elves and the Shoemaker Retelling"

 

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review 2018-11-30 21:51
Pyramid Selling: "Tales From Shakespeare" by Charles and Mary Lamb
Tales From Shakespeare - Charles Lamb,Mary Lamb



(Original Review, 1981-01-18)

The book industry is becoming like the film industry; no new ideas so just reboot or copy a previous story...Star Trek Into Darkness being the most cynical by simply reorganizing original a Trek film script and a couple of cases word for word.

 

 

If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

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review 2018-11-23 16:42
Peering at the Self: "Complete Tales & Poems" by Edgar Allan Poe
Complete Tales and Poems - Edgar Allan Poe


(Original Review, 1992-12-16)




Can a reader in this and age fully appreciate Poe? Maybe the age of the reader is significant - I first encountered Poe over forty decades ago - in the sense that time on the planet, life lived, experiences felt and understood, are part of the maturing process essential to entering Poe's visions and dream-states. Some of the comments I’ve read elsewhere suggest a fidgety class of pre-adolescents who have lost - if ever they had - what might be called attention spans. Then again, maybe Poe is uniquely American and the Europeans cannot fully grasp him.
 
 
 
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

 

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