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This collection of short stories by Lucy Sussex is a surefire hit, featuring 25 reprinted selections that range from science fiction and fantasy to mystery and suspense. Readers of all genres are sure to find something to fit their tastes. In the compelling "Merlusine," a determined geneticist attempts to track down the mysterious remaining family of a famed "snake-woman" in hopes of mapping out their genes. In the alternate history "My Lady Tongue," a bold young woman encounters her first male outsider after being separated from her hard-core feminist community. In "Ardent Clouds," a risk-addicted filmmaker specializing in volcanoes goes to film one that is long dormant with the promise of something more. Despite some overlapping themes and ideas (most notably three back-to-back stories about cursed dolls), each story feels fresh and original. Sussex's style of writing is consistently engaging, and her protagonists strong and endearing--a winning combination. Readers will be hard-pressed to find a weak spot in this collection. (July)
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