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Villains Victorious Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 2001


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: DAW (April 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0886779804
  • ISBN-13: 978-0886779801
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,384,057 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Martin H. Greenberg���was honored in 1995 by the Mystery Writers of America with the Ellery Queen Award for lifetime achievement in mystery editing. He is also the recipient of two Anthony awards. Mystery Scene magazine called him "the best mystery anthologist since Ellery Queen." He has compiled more than 1,000 anthologies and���is the president of TEKNO books.���He lives in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Michele L. Worley on March 21, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Bischoff, David: "The Whiteviper Scrolls" occurs later in Whiteviper's unsavoury career than its counterpart in _Apprentice Fantastic_, and like it is narrated by him to a downtrodden peon in his old age.
Braunbeck, Gary A. & Snyder, Lucy A.: "Souls to Take" Dr. Louis Cohen never wanted to end pregnancies by anything other than a normal delivery, but rather than leave patients to alternatives that seem even worse, he keeps performing abortions, despite his own qualms. But when the "LifeGuards" ambush him on his way back from a house call, the doc's rescuer may be worse than the fate she saved him from.
Crowther, Peter: Set in a comic-book world of "Heroes and Villains", the tone is something like the realism of _Watchmen_, but from the viewpoint of the super-villains. The Comedian in particular is struggling with his conscience, as he prepares for a deathbed visit to his mother, their first meeting in many years. But even sidekicks are well drawn - one, for instance, lost his father at 12 when a run-of-the-mill superhero/supervillain struggle destroyed a few city buildings, and the apologetic superhero's out-of-court settlement wouldn't bring his father back.
Davis, R.: "King of Thorns" is the title awarded to the best of the temple's Thorns - their master assassin trainees - each year. The story follows the Thorns' final competitive exam with one another, and is recommended for _Thief: The Dark Project_ players. :)
Dungate, Pauline E.: "Nina" has a mysterious hold on people - her classmates fear her, she rarely does her homework, and the real story of her father's suicide is uncanny. The narrator's family has arranged a marriage between them, and now that he's asked around about her, he's finally got sense enough to be scared.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Pam Siegfried on April 17, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The book is a mix, obviously, with so many stories. "Horror Show", where the monster becomes real, I've seen a thousand of these. On the good side, "Death Mage" has both an unusual magic system and some very good writing. "All Things Being Relative" by Tanya Huff, which opens this collection is a howler. THIS, by God, is a Dark Queen! Her scribe is named Cornelius Dickcissel. I need say no more. Also contained herein is "To Speak With Angels" by Michelle West. Having read it, I will henceforth date my life by it. "This occurred before I read that story. This occured after." It concerns a saint who enters Hell, and to anyone with a Christian background, it should be very powerful indeed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Eric Oppen on October 19, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In much of contemporary fantasy, the bad guys seem to have no real motive other than "I'm BAD, bwahahaha!" These stories look at some familiar stories and situations from the point of view of the bad guys, and tell us something about why they do what they do. Tanya Huff's Dark Queen's take on quite a few traditional fairy tales is well worth a look, and Fiona Patton's necromancers come back, along with the slightly-twisted magical "Italy" they live in. We get to see the early years of a very famous villain, and, in the context of a four-color comic world, learn with a person obviously based on one of the most famous comic villains about why evil must be evil, and why evil must be.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
3.5 stars I reluctantly round down to 3.

There are a handful of good stories here, and none really bad. Most though are firmly average or predictable and one or two below average.

Yes, we do see villains triumph. The problem is, in my mind, very few of the villains are actually shown or hinted at doing awful things. When they are, in some cases, it is presented as being comedic. Or in other cases, it is villain vs. villain. Is one really a villain if he battles another villain? Well maybe but it isn't very satisfying. And though technically being victorious seems contrary to the spirit of the title.

Getting close to the villains also, unpreventably ,creates a form of sympathy for them, rendering them from villain to mere antagonist. This also dilutes the power and shock of having a villain triumph. When we like or sympathize with them, well, that's not very villainous. I do give the authors the fact that it would be hard to present the viewpoint of a character and have the character remain unlikeable.

The other problem is that they weren't generally likeable either making the reader feel ambivalent about their triumphs. Though some decent craft went into most of these stories they remain average but entertaining ways to while a few moments away. The difficulty of the concept may have prevented them from becoming more.

Worthwhile to read, but it isn't greatness.
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