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Bedlam's Edge (Bedlam's Bard) Hardcover – August 2, 2005
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About the Author
Mercedes Lackey is known for several bestselling fantasy series, including the Heralds of Valdemar and Bardic Voices series, work that ranges from historical fantasy to grittily realistic urban fantasy set in the modern world. In only a decade she has made her mark as one of the brightest stars of fantasy. She lives in Oklahoma where she can be found prying the talons of birds of prey she is attempting to nurse back to health out of her hands.
Rosemary Edghill, after holding the usual array of Weird Writer jobs, including freelance graphic designer and vampire killer, has settled down to a career as a full-time writer, publishing popular urban fantasies as well as novels in genres ranging from romance to mystery. Her latest book for Baen is The Warslayer.
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"Bright As Diamonds" by Barb and Michael Caffrey reminds me most of the Lackey/Edghill collaborations, as their style and story reflect that "universe" faithfully. I appreciated their use of the Brisingamen and elements of Scandinavian fantasy -- they incorporated lesser-known mythology into the Lackey/Edghill universe in a smooth manner.
"Bottle of Djinn" was also amusing, and a modern version of the djinn versus humans.
In "Red Fiddler", Dave Freer brings his updated Fear Dearg, the Irish "red man" transplanted to Africa, to us in a thoroughly enjoyable story. True to form, Dave finds some way to bring the forgotten tricksters of our past into a modern world, while keeping their low and vile humor wickedly certain.
"All That Jazz" by Jenn Saint-John..all I can say is, "That idiot, Norenlod."
"Six-Shooter" by Ellen Guon and "The Waters and the Wild" by Misty Lackey were both compelling looks at more disturbing topics. Suicide, in "Six-Shooter" is.."encouraged" by evil beings who then consume the souls of the hapless suicides. Some of the souls fight back for as long as they can. "Waters" begins with a man explaining how someone helped him through a difficult adolescence, and although a sniper's bullet takes him out of this life, he finds that person again.
All of the stories were written by seasoned professionals, even if some of the authors are not widely known to the discerning reader. The skill with which they write is clearly evident, and I look forward to future collaborations in this universe, and perhaps even solo endeavors by these authors (one can only hope!).
Mercedes Lackey, Ellen Guon, and Rosemary Edghill created a look behind the scenes in their Bedlam's Bard series. What would happen if elves continued to exist in the present day? What would happen if they came to America with the colonists? And what would they be doing?
In Bedlam's Edge, they've opened their universe to other writers, including talented newcomers Barb and Michael Caffrey (who sadly, passed away suddenly and too young), who share their own takes on the world of Urban Elves.
Dave Freer and Eric Flint, Mercedes Lackey's co-authors in the Heirs of Alexandria series (if you haven't read the series, go immediately and buy all of them, including A Mankind Witch, the latest.), Roberta Gellis, Rosemary Edghill, India Edghill, and Mercedes Lackey herself all contributed to this excellent collection of short stories.
Do you have to have read all the other books in the series to enjoy this one? Heck, no! In fact, it stands alone better than most anthologies do.
This is a terrific collection. Every story is a jewel.
The Bananaslug. at Baen's Bar