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Hart & Boot and Other Stories Paperback – January 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Night Shade Books; First Edition edition (January 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1597800538
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597800532
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,345,032 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A simple theme unites the 13 stories in this solid collection from Pratt (The Strange Adventures of Rangergirl): extraordinary things can happen to ordinary people. In the title story, a western, Pearl meets—or perhaps creates from nothing—a man she names John Boot, who proves to be her salvation. In "Impossible Dreams," a videophile repeatedly returns to a mysteriously appearing video store from an alternate reality. In "Bottom Feeding," Graydon, mourning the death of his brother, conquers a giant catfish that has magical properties. Elements from Greek myth play important roles in such tales as "Terrible Ones," in which an actress finds herself followed by a Chorus and sought out by the Furies, and "Living with the Harpy," about a woman who gives up her harpy roommate for love. Pratt's straightforward style, ordinary Joe protagonists and often hackneyed plots render his bizarre landscapes all the more plausible and the emotional connections all the more wrenching. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Full of a keen sense of usual fantasy--strange creatures and legends--and the fantastic in ordinary life, Pratt's stories are a lot of fun. "Hart & Boot" is a western in which Pearl Hart determines to make her fortune as an outlaw with the help of the mysterious Boot, who appeared to her out of nowhere. "Terrible Ones" seasons the last days of the Eumenides with a modern performance of Medea. "The Tyrant in Love" is so bored with causing pain that he tries love and makes rather a mess of it. The girl "In a Glass Casket" is there because her father doesn't want her ever to leave him. "Living with the Harpy" is on one level about the benefits of having a myth for a housemate but also considers giving up the merely fantastic for something even riskier. Pratt's notes reveal the motives behind each story; for example, he aimed "The Tyrant in Love" at a woman he hoped to seduce (not his best idea, he says--the seduction, that is). Regina Schroeder
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Tim Pratt was born in Goldsboro, NC, and grew up in various places in the American South. He relocated to Northern California in 2001. His fiction has won a Hugo Award, and he's been a finalist for Sturgeon, Stoker, World Fantasy, Mythopoeic, World Fantasy, Scribe, and Nebula Awards, among others. His other books include three short story collections; a volume of poems; contemporary fantasy novels The Strange Adventures of Rangergirl and Briarpatch; gonzo historical The Constantine Affliction under the name T. Aaron Payton; fantasy roleplaying game tie-ins; and, as T.A. Pratt, eight books (and counting) about sorcerer Marla Mason. He occasionally edits anthologies, including the Rags and Bones anthology co-edited with Melissa Marr. He works as a senior editor for Locus magazine, and lives in Berkeley, CA, with his wife Heather and their son River. Find him online at timpratt.org.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 7 customer reviews
Overall an excellent and diverse bunch of short works from a very talented author.
para
Pratt is amazing - I'm friends with his wife, and had the great pleasure of reading this book.
Azzia Walker
The stories, their themes and characters, often turn traditional tropes on their heads.
Shanna Germain

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Shanna Germain on November 3, 2012
Format: Paperback
Tim Pratt is perhaps best known for his Marla Mason novels and for good reason -- they're fun, rollicking reads with a smart, complicated protagonist that you can really root for. But for readers who aren't familiar with his shorter work (or with Pratt at all), Hart & Boot & Other Stories is a wonderful place to begin.

This collection, showcasing much of Pratt's earlier published work, includes 13 stories that blend the flavors of fantasy, mythology, science fiction, westerns, fairy tales, and lit fiction into a delightful reading experience. Some of the stories show off Pratt's "Mason" voice -- that quirky style that is imbued with wit and a tiny bit of snark -- but other stories go off in new directions, giving readers a taste of just how skillfully diverse Pratt's voice is. The stories, their themes and characters, often turn traditional tropes on their heads. "Life in Stone" is perhaps my favorite-ever story of Pratt's and is worth the cost of the book for its originality and strength of premise alone.

Characters you can root for, put into situations where they are probably going to lose something or someone, having to make the most difficult choice of their lives: that's part of what makes a great story in any genre, and Pratt is one of the masters of giving us exactly that. Whether the protagonists are criminals in the very weirdest old west, voice actors who live with harpies, or little boys who find girls in glass caskets, they're the kind of characters you want to root for, even as you watch them lose their way.

Overall, Hart & Boot and Other Stories is a great book to dip into again and again, especially when you want something that will take you to original worlds with characters who will touch you, heart and soul.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 19, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Clever and highly imaginative. My favorites were probably "Cup and Table" and "Dream Engine". Bonus points for a story titled "Romanticore". I'll certainly be reading more from Tim Pratt. One reason I almost gave the book four stars (but went with five in the end) is because I expect even better from Pratt in the future.
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Format: Paperback
A while back I read one of the stories in this collection ("Impossible Dreams"), loved it, and jumped at the chance to read more of Pratt's short fiction.

"Hart & Boot & Other Stories" has an impressive thirteen stories, most with some extraordinary elements, ranging from supernatural to mythological to science fiction and most things in between. There are touches of humor and tranquility, but a lot of the stories also get darker and explore violence and sexuality, sometimes together. By nature of having a little bit of everything this collection won't be for everyone.

Pratt's writing style is excellent, vividly describing things without letting the stories slow down. I was happy to find I like most of the collection and some of the stories were even on par with "Impossible Dreams." My favorites of the bunch besides that were "Cup and Table", "Life in Stone" and "Living with the Harpy." Even the ones I liked less ("The Tyrant in Love" and "In a Glass Casket," for example) were interesting and unique. My least favorite was actually the titular "Hart & Boot," although I seem to be in the vast minority in not caring for it some your milage may vary.

Overall an excellent and diverse bunch of short works from a very talented author. Highly recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I liked this book because of the writing which flows well and because of its originality.
My favorite is the first story "Joe Boot" which is a Western of sorts, but not a Western like anything you've read before.
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