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Fearsome Journeys: The New Solaris Book of Fantasy Mass Market Paperback – May 28, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
Okay, so maybe I am being a bit facetious, but it really is that good!
Short story collections are problematic for me. On the one hand, I like being able to sample authors in small doses, and to get a feel for their work, or to simply pay a brief visit with old favorites, no strings (or subsequent volumes) attached. On the other hand, I find them wildly uneven in terms of content and quality, with the weakest entries unfairly dragging down my overall impression of the collection as a whole.
Much to my delight, Fearsome Journeys has proven to be the rare exception to that rule. There were a few stories here that didn't completely wow me, but I can honestly say I still enjoyed them all. While those few suffer by comparison against their companions here, they likely would have come across as some of the better entries in a different collection. There are several authors here who have just shot to the top of my TBR pile, based on the strength of their contributions, and a few others who've absolutely demanded I immediately rectify their absence from that same pile.
The Effigy Engine: A Tale of the Red Hats by Scott Lynch was a great choice to lead off the collection. It's fantastic in every sense of the world, with a world and characters I would gladly revisit.Read more ›
Military fantasy gets a good look in with Scott Lynch's opener "The Effigy Engine: A Tale of the Red Hats", which pits a band of highly competent mercenary wizards against an enemy with a battlefield super-weapon, and of course Glen Cook's contribution is another amusing and alarming tale in his long-running Black Company series "Shaggy Dog Bridge: A Black Company Story". Trudi Canavan's hard-edged "Camp Follower" ranges from gritty military fantasy to a high-magic showdown. Kate Elliott shows a bloody political skirmish from the point of view of civilians caught in the middle in "Leaf and Branch and Grass and Vine".
Saladin Ahmed's "Amethyst, Shadow and Light" was one of my favourites - a sword and sorcery heist in Fritz Leiber-ish tradition, featuring a rabbit warrior-woman and a barbarian named Zok. No, no, it's really good.
Another favourite was K J Parker's "The Dragonslayer of Merebarton", featuring a retired knight whose social obligations unfortunately include dragonslaying. This one had a light if somewhat weary tone and may have been the pick of the collection. I also enjoyed the amusing "Sponda the Suet Girl and the Secret of the French Pearl", a screwball comedy about thieves and con artists.
This is a fine cross-section of fantasy fiction that I would recommend to anyone looking to sample the genre.
All shorts very well written, funny when funny is the mood, suspensefull when such is the objective. Being and avid reader and collector of the genre I got the very good bonus of being able to be introduced to several writers i know nothing about, and will now further explore.
A very very good book, with many a very good read.
The only story I didn't reread was The Dragonslayer of Merebarton by K J Parker; it affected me too strongly with the last few paragraphs .... The author was good enough to turn the empathy and engagement of a comfortable read to a sudden hammer of heartache. Others may view it differently having had different lives.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very good compilation. Most of the stories were fun to read, and I did not find myself bored at all while reading them.Published 28 days ago by Benjamin
Very boring collection. For a book called "Fearsome Journeys" there really was not a one to be found. Very little, if any action in these tales. Read morePublished on August 10, 2013 by Bigdawg293
I've read 100's of anthologies and usually every book has some great stories. Unso with Fearsome Journeys. Read morePublished on July 28, 2013 by Avid sci fi bookreader