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Conmergence: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction [Kindle Edition]

Tara Maya
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Tara Maya’s previously published short stories, most of them no longer available in print, are gathered together here for the first time. A number of the tales are short shorts or flash fiction, including the poignant, "Ghosts on Red Strings, " and the biting alternate history, "Best of All Possible Worlds. " Longer stories and two novelettes round out the collection. The emotional timbre ranges across a wide gamut. "Tomorrow We Dance" is a bleak retelling of the fairy-tales Pied Piper and the Emperor's New Clothes. In the more heroic and romantic Painted World stories (two are here), artists are able to bring their paintings to life. For fans of hard sf, there is "A Thousand Blossoms With The Day," which starts from the premise there might have been life in the first fractions of a second after the Big Bang. An Author's Note, and author Comments on the story behind each story, enliven the volume with the author’s own strange journey from homeless street person to published author.

"Ghosts on Red Strings" - Only through forgiveness can she free her ghosts.... But some crimes cannot be forgiven.

"Conmergence" - In a non-Euclidean multiverse, parallel universes can meet.

"Portrait of a Pretender" - A murdered king, an heir in danger and a usurper... but is he as black as they paint? (a Painted World story)

"Refractions from the Neglected Side" - A brain damaged woman suffers from hemi-neglect, the inability to see anything on the left. The cure may be even more bizarre.

"Burn" - In that kingdom, witches burned. (8 of Swords of Tarot Tales)

"The Best of All Possible Worlds" - Money can buy anything, even a universe where you can be happy. Right?

"Public Eye" - To hide from the grid, you have to give up everything. Especially friends.

"Walker" - And yet there are those the grid refuses to see.

"A Thousand Blossoms With The Day" - The universe is less than a second old, and already life struggles to survive.

"You Have Not Forgotten How To Fly" - A faery once defeated an evil war lord, but can she handle a toddler?

"Delivery Status, Failure" - Note to self: don't try to call mom and work on the computer at the same time.

"Grace" - God promised her a great destiny. God lied.

"Tomorrow We Dance" - When the Bone Whistler plays his flute, the whole tribe dances and a new day is just over the horizon...

"The Virgin's Choice" - A princess tests her three suitors and discovers something surprising. (4 of Cups in Tarot Tales)

"Drawn to the Brink" - Her job is to hunt a monster escaped from a painting. She didn't expect him to be so handsome... or to need his help.

(Total wordcount: 47,000 words)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tara Maya has lived in a village in Africa, meditated in a nunnery in Nepal, volunteered at an Gandhian ashram in India, toured dungeons in Transylvania, explored the rooftops of stone cities in Yemen and worked with human rights groups in Indonesia. She holds a degree in History, because a degree in Time Travel was not available.

Product Details

  • File Size: 287 KB
  • Print Length: 186 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0983107300
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Misque Press; 1 edition (October 16, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0047GN96A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #874,775 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great, quick read! November 12, 2010
By D
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have to say I was impressed by this Anthology.

"A Thousand Blossoms With The Day" is one of the best short stories I've ever read, I will recommend it to any one that will listen to me. To the ones that don't listen to me, I shall even reverse recommend it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should Be Discovered November 16, 2010
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Tara Maya is definitely a talented writer and that was clear from the first story in this anthology. I was moved immediately by "Ghosts on Red Strings." It was very timely, considering the ethnic violence still taking place around the world today. The "Painted World" and "Tarot" stories deserve books of their own. A couple of stories were fragments, which sometimes was frustrating, but mostly because i wanted to read more. I hope that a good publisher discovers this collection and offers Tara a book deal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No need to speculate - this is thought-provoking scifi December 6, 2010
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
When she says "speculative" fiction, Tara really means it. She has some very interesting and thought-provoking speculations on future (and past and fictional) tech and society in this anthology. The fun thing is that she explains how she developed the stories in the notes after each story. That's very helpful for aspiring writers such as myself.

While my favorite stories are very short, Ghosts on Red Strings and The Best of All Possible Worlds, I would love to see some of the worlds she creates expanded into full length novels.

This anthology is great for filling the little reading gaps you might have during your day. Buy it! Read it! Review it!

(When you review a book, it really helps out the author reach more readers. So, especially if you like a book, be sure to come back and review it!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Buy it for "Tomorrow We Dance" February 19, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
It's a bit of understatement to say that this collection is uneven. You will find here several very short sketches, some in fantasy and some in SciFi genre, the later better than the former. Fantasy lovers will probably enjoy two longer stories set in "The Painted World", competently written but rather uninspired chapters from a novel yet to be written, with familiar motifs of magical imagery turning into reality and even more familiar court intrigues (some interesting plot surprises do occur, though).

"Refractions from the Neglected Side" is the best SciFi offering here: reminiscent of early Greg Egan, this story wonders what would the world look like if we were truly able to pay attention.

But the sufficient reason to buy this collection is "Tomorrow We dance". At the surface a retelling of "The Pied Piper" tale with some "The Emperor's New Clothes" and "Lord of the Flies" thrown in, this powerful novelette is much more than that: it convincingly tells how we fall for false prophets, how we abandon our humanity for empty promises, and why nobody is free of danger of becoming a beast to others, even the closest ones, in the name of great common good at the other side of the rainbow.

The author tells us in her comments she is working on the novel from which this little masterpiece was taken. Not a great fan of fantasy myself, I eagerly await it nevertheless. It might easily make hardships of life on the streets worthwhile (read those comments to see what I am talking about (o: )
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4.0 out of 5 stars Like a Good Cup of Coffee May 14, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Conmergence is a like a good cup of coffee. You're going to pick it up and enjoy every sip tasting nuances of flavor that will stay with you long after the book is done. However, it is not a 'sit down and read the whole thing' book. That would be a waste. Each title is unique, superbly written and completely engaging. It is best taken like a cup of coffee, when you want a worthy diversion from the realness of life, Conmergence will deliver.
The author, also shares her comments about each title which creates the sense that in reading the book, you are making a friend; a very imaginative, thought provoking, and boundless friend.
One last comment of no literary connection....put this book out somewhere for others to see and the cover alone will spark conversation!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great intro of short stories April 8, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I love all works by T.MAYA this one is no exception. This book provides an in-depth insight, introduction to her previous work and fills some gaps into the world of T.Mara. I look forward to more. Tara continue to bring us all hope with you wonderful imagination.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great way to get to know the author better
I love Tara Maya. She's a fantastic author and I love that she takes the time to write thoroughly stories rather then rush through a story just to get it out. Read more
Published 20 months ago by mapleleafmanny
4.0 out of 5 stars crafted to a high standard
Conmergence presents a solid batch of stories that are crafted to a high standard. Tara Maya's prose is quite fine, and I quickly settled in to enjoy some well-written tales. Read more
Published on March 18, 2013 by Scott Bailey
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply different. Simply awesome!
This is one of the best books Tara Maya has put together. I love her creative thinking and how things seem to go in a direction you don't expect.
Published on May 3, 2012 by Evelyn L. Scott
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for aspiring writers!
There's a little bit of everything in this collection. Historical, mystical and technological speculative fiction all come together. Read more
Published on November 25, 2011 by Bec
4.0 out of 5 stars Not bad. I enjoyed the stories and the author's notes.
I enjoyed this book, and the way the author writes is quite fresh. It's easy to tell that she loves what she does. Read more
Published on August 14, 2011 by Tallen1
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag
Some of the stories in this collection I found really interesting, some, not so much. I didn't care for the ones about the painters; they seemed overly florid and too "fantasy"... Read more
Published on March 19, 2011 by A. Richner
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More About the Author

Tara Maya has lived in Africa, Europe and Asia. She's pounded sorghum with mortar and pestle in a little clay village where the jungle meets the desert, meditated in a Buddhist monastery in the Himalayas and sailed the Volga river to a secret city that was once the heart of the Soviet space program. This first-hand experience, as well as research into the strange and piquant histories of lost civilizations, inspires her writing. Her terrible housekeeping, however, is entirely the fault of pixies.

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