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Winter's Dreams Hardcover – April 30, 2012
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Now to the contents: I have made a list of the stories with their year of original publication and the series, where it applies. I won't write anything about the contents. In the case of shorter stories, a summary already is a spoiler, in my opinion.
Song from a Forgotten Hill (1971)
And Dragons in the Sky (1972)
Appointment in Samarkand (1972)
Sunrise (1973), Starfishers-series
The Devil's Tooth (1974)
In the Wind (1975)
The Recruiter (1977)
The Seventh Fool (1978)
Quiet Sea (1978), A Dread Empire-series
Darkwar (1982), Darkwar-series
Enemy Territory (1983)
The Waiting Sea (1983)
Winter's Dreams (ca. late 90s, exact date now known to me)
- "Song from a Forgotten Hill" (Clarion, 1971) sings of fire and freedom.
- "And Dragons in the Sky" (Clarion, 1972) is a Starfishers story. It follows two agents to Star's End.
- "Appointment in Samarkand" (Witchcraft & Sorcery, 1972) observes the oldest man in the world repealing a vistor once more.
- "Sunrise" (Eternity SF, 1973) brings sunlight to Edgeward City.
- "The Devil's Tooth" (Literary Magazine of Fantasy & Terror, 1974) puts a swordsman on a quest in the light of the dying sun.
- "In the Wind" (Tomorrow Today, 1975) is a story in the Starfishers universe. It pits men against windwhales and mantas.
- "The Recruiter" (Amazing, 1977) reveals the woes of a one man press gang.
- "The Seventh Fool" (F&SF, 1978) presents the antics of a hustler during an election.
- "Ponce" (Amazing, 1978) delivers a yellow car and a dog with blue eyes to a poor family.
- "Quiet Sea" (F&SF, 1978) is a story in the Starfishers universe. It shipwrecks a spacer on a long forgotten planet.
- "Darkwar" (Asimov's, 1982) is a Darkwar story. It confronts the males on Meth with the return of the silth.
- "Enemy Territory" (Night Voyages, 1983) regards the trials of veterans after a war.
- "The Waiting Sea" (Archon, 1983) concerns a man who hears voices from the sea.
- "Winter's Dreams" (Balticon, 1997) removes fancies from the mind of a young woman.
These tales cover a range of topics. They dwell upon conflict and violence. So has most of the author's series.
These stories also vary in length. "Appointment in Samarkand" is very short. Others are short stories and a few are novelettes.
"The Devil's Tooth", "The Seventh Fool" and "Winter's Dreams" all show a resemblance to The Dying Earth works. He imitates the feel and plotting very well, but his backgrounds only approximate the color and detail of the original works. Very few authors seem to attempt this approach.
The author was a participant in the 1970 Clarion Workshop. His first novel -- The Heirs of Babylon -- was published in 1972. It had the usual flaws of a first novel, but grabbed the reader's attention from the beginning. His writing has become more polished, but his ability to interest the reader has never waned.
Highly recommended for Cook fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of interesting characters, unusual situations and lots of action. Read and enjoy!
-Arthur W. Jordin
Maybe all that is because I'm a real Cook fan, with his Garrett series being one of the most fun things I have ever read, but I think the lack of ancillary material is even more pronounced for a casual reader.
For instance, "Darkwar" was written in the early 80's, and Glen Cook then wrote a trilogy of books as a prequel to the short story (yes, the mind boggles at the unorthodoxy). I only know that because it was in an interview I read. That's the kind of stuff that helps make a collection become more than the sum of its parts. Great parts, yes, but it could be more.
Of all the stories, "The devil's tooth" was the one I liked the best: a gritty sword & sorcery tale in a dying-earth type setting, but definitely not Vance. Really though, all were great, and its only a matter of personal taste which story you enjoy the most: Dragons in the sky was also up there, and now I am tempted to try the Starfishers trilogy after all.
If you like Glen Cook, you'll like this. If you like scifi, or S&S, or short story collections, you'll like this too.