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Queen Victoria's Book of Spells: An Anthology of Gaslamp Fantasy Hardcover – March 19, 2013
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Billed as an anthology of “Gaslamp Fantasy,” this collection features 18 stories, all of which are set in a magical version of the nineteenth century. Popularized by authors such as Neil Gaiman and Susanna Clarke, gaslamp fantasy has recently been picking up steam, propelled by a current generation of writers who have added a new dimension to some classic settings and sensibilities. Fantasy fans and historical-fiction aficionados will find much to admire and devour in these genre-bending tales featuring an engaging combination of the old and the new. Fantasy, magic, and fairylands were popular in the increasingly industrialized nineteenth century, and, as the editors theorize in the introduction to this innovative collection, “as our own technological revolution causes sweeping societal changes and upheaval, many of us turn to fantasy for the same reasons: to escape the modern world.” --Margaret Flanagan --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
“A superb sampling of urban fantasy.... You will have fun with all twenty stories.” ―Booklist on Naked City
“This is a treasure chest. Open it and revel in its riches.” ―Kirkus Reviews, starred review on The Faery Reel
“An often sophisticated view of the world [and] a real sense of how powerful nature can be in its various guises.” ―School Library Journal on The Green Man
“An enchanting, witty collection of original stories.... This superior volume proves that the notion of modern-day Grimms, Andersens and Wildes isn't just a fairy tale.” ―Publishers Weekly on Black Thorn, White Rose
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Take the time to read the introduction, as the editors provide literary history and back ground.
They also address the disparity of female authors.
There are four stories which stood out for me:
Elizabeth Wein's: "For the Briar Rose," which was inspired by an actual painting. Wein provides a web site for readers interested in viewing the painting in question.
Elizabeth Bear's: "The Governess," shows what it would have been like for the working class and women.
Dale Bailey's: "Mr. Splitfoot," is inspired by two actual sisters who worked as mediums.
Finally, Veronica Schanoes's: "Phosphorus," which is a fictional account of an actual labor revolt.
Most recent customer reviews
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