February 22nd, 2010

Summary: Chapbook Anthologies, 2009

Chapbook Anthologies, 2009

This is my category for especially thin anthologies. As usual, its borders are ambiguous -- the Sean Wallace-Erzebet YellowBoy book Jabberwocky 4 could certainly have been included, for example, while the Subterranean Press book A Fantasy Medley could have been somewhere else. But this is what I ended up with. Two books in the same series as the two chapbooks I listed last year, plus a slim collection from Subterranean. So:

(Going Going) GONE, edited by John Benson;
The Homeless Moon: Imaginary Places (no editor listed); and
A Fantasy Medley, edited by Yanni Kuznia.

13 stories, 4 novelettes, 9 shorts (one short-short), about 80,000 words. 6 stories by women (46%), and 1 SF (7.7%).

Benson's yearly chapbook is always a brief selection if what almost seem outtakes from his fine 'zine Not One of Us. This year I thought all the stories OK, none really stood out, though I suppose I'd list Patricia Russo's "Claude's Ghost Story" as the most interesting. This year's Homeless Moon chapbook featured stories inspired by actual fictional lands (from Alberto Manguel and Gianni Guadalphi's Dictionary of Imaginary Places). I particularly liked Erin Hoffman's "In Lixus, Close to Waking", which is about an AI coming to awareness. In general I will say this was a nice book, probably not that widely seen, which is well worth a look. A Fantasy Medley is a collection of stories by fairly prominent fantasy writers, that I found a bit of a letdown relative to my expectations for a set of pretty decent writers. That said, the stories are OK, my favorite probably being Kate Elliott's "Riding the Shore of the River of Death", about a woman warrior trying to take an enemy's head, to prove herself a warrior, a man, and so not subject to a future as just a wife.