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Firebirds Rising: An Anthology of Original Science Fiction and Fantasy Paperback – October 18, 2007


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 7 Up-Imagine that Archeoptrix, the prehistoric link between birds and dinosaurs, had evolved into the dominant life-form on a planet. In Carol Emshwiller's Quill, representatives of that planet have secretly crashed on Earth and begun interbreeding with humans. In Kelly Link's The Wizards of Perfil, an orphan boy and his caustic cousin, both dirt poor and gifted with unusual psychic powers, are bought by a strange man to serve the awesome and forbidding wizards of Perfil, only to learn after difficult trials and life-changing tragedies that they are the wizards. In Kara Dalkey's near-future Hives, cell phones can beam and receive messages without external sound. The phones are highly addictive and used by high school girls to connect ultra-exclusive cliques. A former-addict-turned-girl-detective gets involved when the rejects of one such hive begin committing suicide one after another. These are just 3 of the 16 stories in this collection. The selections range in length from 9 pages (Francesca Lia Block's chilling Blood Roses, in which two sisters confront a serial killer) to 50 pages. Fantasy stories outnumber sci-fi two to one, and the great majority of the tales feature female protagonists. Even those with male protagonists deal with themes of friendship, family, love, and loss more than action and adventure. Compelling stories for thoughtful readers.-Susan L. Rogers, Chestnut Hill Academy, PA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 7-10. Editor November follows Firebirds (2003) with an equally captivating collection of 16 original stories offering a rich variety of selections. "Huntress," by Tamora Pierce, which grew from news stories about teens "wilding" in New York City's Central Park, proves a strong jumping-off place. In Charles de Lint's "Little (Grrl) Lost," a human teenage girl and a Little teenage girl meet when the Little girl runs away from her home behind the bedroom baseboard. Patricia A. McKillip, Carol Emshwiller, and Emma Bull are also among the contributors. This volume contains more sf than its predecessor; November includes tales about genetic engineering and human-alien interactions, as well stories such as "Hives," by Kara Dalkey, a chilling, high-tech piece that takes teen girls beyond cell phones to "constant, voice-in-head-close contact"; and Tanith Lee's "The House on the Planet," a richly depicted, three-part tale about establishing a human colony on a distant planet. Fans will be happy to learn that a third anthology is in the works. Sally Estes
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Firebird; Reprint edition (October 18, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142409367
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142409367
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #279,404 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

I enjoyed this book as an entertaining read.
J. L. Callahan
If I were still a disaffected teenager, however, I'd throw this heavy-handed, preachy anthology right out the window.
Elizabeth G.
Patricia A. McKillip's "Jack O'Lantern"- I liked the mix of mythologies in this story.
Cindy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Richard R. Horton on February 11, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Firebirds Rising is an engaging mix of SF and Fantasy stories aimed at a young adult audience, though quite enjoyable for adults as well.

Two of my favorites are Science Fiction: Carol Emshwiller's "Quill", an oddly old-fashioned, charming yet sad, story of an isolated family and their curious secret; and Kara Dalkey's "Hives", an uncompromising story of teen-aged girls and cliques, exacerbated by near-telepathic phone connections.

Naturally one of the stories I most looked forward to was Kelly Link's "The Wizards of Perfil", and this is indeed a very enjoyable piece, though not as good as her best work. A boy named Onion and his disagreeable cousin Halsa, as well as Halsa's mother and brothers, are fleeing a war that has already their other parents' lives. Money is short, so when a reprensative of the reclusive Wizards of Perfil offers to buy a child, one of them must go. Onion, who may be telepathic, seems a natural candidate to sell to the representative of the reclusive wizards, but somehow Halsa is sold instead. As we expect with Link, the story goes in unexpected directions, telling of both Onion and Halsa and the very reclusive wizards - though I must say the resolution was exactly what I expected. (Which is not necessarily a bad thing.)

I was also delighted to see a story by Emma Bull, with the intriguing title "What Used to Be Good Still Is" (a title actually credited to Elise Matthesen). This is a moving story of a young man in a mining town in Arizona in the 1930s, and his love for a Mexican-American girl, who loves him but loves something else even more.

Patricia A. McKillip contributes another of her stories about a group of painters resembling the Pre-Raphaelites.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Cindy on September 17, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This collection as a whole is definitely worth reading, and many of the stories deserves rereading as well. At the same time, there were a few stories that just weren't that impressive. This collection contained a lot of coming of age stories. Here are my thoughts on the individual stories (sorry if they're a bit vague- I'm trying to be helpful without giving too much away!):

Tamora Pierce's "Huntress"- One of those stories that just didn't impress me, although I really did like the concept (wicked youth and a vengeful goddess).

Nina Kiriki Hoffman's "Unwrapping"- For me, it wasn't exactly memorable, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. It had an interesting premise and I liked the imagery.

Alison Goodman's "The Real Thing"- I didn't really like this story that much. It's based on some of the author's other books, and reads like a chapter out of one of them. It's a decent work of science fiction, but it seems like it belongs with a greater story.

Charles de Lint's "Little (Grrl) Lost"- I love the title. However, I'm not really a big fan of stories about little people, so I didn't enjoy it as much as I could have.

Diana Wynne Jones's "I'll Give You My Word"- I loved this story. The character of Jeremy is just so unique and lovable, and the story is interesting, quirky, and somewhat humorous.

Ellen Klages "In the House of the Seven Librarians"- This is one of my favorite stories in the book. Basically, a baby is returned to the library to pay for an overdue book, and the story follows her progress as she grows up. Very cute. It's one of the many coming of age stories in the book, definitely one of the better ones.

Sharon Shinn's "Wintermoon Wish"- This would make a great Christmastime story.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth G. on June 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The jacket blurbs and the reviews fail to indicate an important fact: every story in this book is about a disaffected teenager. Every single one of them. Disaffected six-inch-tall teenagers. Disaffected genetically modified teenagers. Disaffected Victorian teenagers. Disaffected teenagers raised by feral librarians. Magical or mundane, ten or eighteen, they're all disaffected, and they all learn pithy lessons about finding acceptance while staying true to themselves.

The individual stories aren't bad at all; Kelly Link and Ellen Klages make particularly solid contributions. If I were still a disaffected teenager, however, I'd throw this heavy-handed, preachy anthology right out the window.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By a reader on June 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This anthology follows in the footsteps of the original 'Firebirds' collection: A few brilliant stories among the padding of watered down sub-fare from famous names. In all honesty many of these stories would never have seen print without the famous name of the author being used on the cover to promote the book. A shame, since the premise of the anthology delights me.

I *am* very glad I read this book, though, especially for the sake of two stories I very much enjoyed:

'In the House of the Seven Librarians' by Ellen Klages is my favorite story, and worth the price of the book alone! This story is about a young girl named Dinsy who is raised by seven 'feral librarians' in an old library building. This book is a paean to old libraries and classics of literature. Any lover of books and reading will thrill to this book. For those of us who remember the old-style libraries with card catalogs, it is a veritable love song. For all book lovers, it's a treasure to love and cherish.

'Hives' by Kara Dalkey is a science fiction story about a future where technology can telepathically link minds, and teen girls use this to keep themselves in constant contact with their groups of friends, or 'hives'. But what happens when the girls get 'cut' from the network of their hive? Why does the sudden silence in their minds cause them to kill themselves? This story takes a science fiction approach to the importance of female friendships, and how necessary and addictive they can become. As Peter S. Beagle said in his novel 'Tamsin', "When you're 14 years old you're not yourself, you are your friends. You forget that when you grow up."

There were two other stories that I did enjoy reading.
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