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The Best Horror,Fantasy,& Science Fiction of 2009: The Best Horror, Fantasy, & Science Fiction of 2009 Paperback – October 9, 2009
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The Absent Willow Review is the world's fastest growing magazine featuring short fiction works of horror, fantasy, and science fiction.
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There are 20 stories here, covering the promised genres of horror, fantasy and sci-fi more or less evenly. Sword and sorcery, fairies, monsters, demons, time travel, etc. all get their moment on stage. There are a couple editing flubs - looks like "he" should be "she" in a couple lines on the last page of "LaRue and the Tinkers," which is confusing, and my favorite story in the collection, "Chimera," is credited to Justine Graykin on its title page and Justin Graykin on the following pages. Justine is the correct name. The table of contents lists only the titles, not the authors - it should have both.
Niall Boyce's "Demonology" is quite clever and in the vein of a Lovecraft classic. It is one of three (unrelated) stories in this collection written in the form of a letter, by coincidence I suppose.
There's no point in singling out stories I didn't like but there were some of those too. But as a writer you can always learn something from a story you dislike.
The good stories in here deserve a larger audience, so take a look at this collection if you're seeking new writers in these genres. Some of these stories may still be on the AWR website too.