Results of the World Fantasy Award in the year 2012.
The Bible Repairman is Tim Powers’s first new collection since Strange Itineraries appeared in 2005, and it is well worth the wait. In five stories and an ambitious historical novella, it offers one example after another of the author’s wit, ingenuity, and sheer imaginative reach.
The title story takes us into the life of a man with a most unusual profession, one that claims a little bit of his soul with every transaction. “Parallel Lives” and “A Soul in a Bottle” are thematically linked ghost stories in which the dead attempt, with varying degrees of success, to exert their influence upon the living. In “The Hour of Babel,” an assortment of damaged people experience, once again, the inexplicable encounter that altered their lives more than thirty years before, while in “A Journey of Only Two Paces” a simple legal procedure is transformed into a nightmarish Kabbalistic ritual. …[more]
The apocalypse was yesterday. These stories are today.
In her new collection, Story Prize finalist Maureen F. McHugh delves into the dark heart of contemporary life and life five minutes from now and how easy it is to mix up one with the other. Her stories are post-bird flu, in the middle of medical trials, wondering if our computers are smarter than us, wondering when our jobs are going to be outsourced overseas, wondering if we are who we say we are, and not sure what we’d do to survive the coming zombie plague.
Bluegrass Symphony is the debut collection from a rising star in Australian genre fiction. Bluegrass Symphony deals with cowboys and fallow fields, shapeshifters and rednecks, superstitions and realities in harsh prairie country-and a whole bunch of other things thrown in the mix. In her introduction, Ann Vandermeer writes, “These stories are about more than people just trying to get something from one another. These stories are about power and redemption, transformation, and sacrifice.”
A TV reality show host helps to restore an East End music hall and uncovers the dreadful secret of Mrs Midnight and her Animal Comedians…. A historian travels to Switzerland to ghost the autobiography of an exiled Balkan king and encounters a sinister cult…. The Master of an Oxford college tries to introduce a dubious piece of modern sculpture into his college chapel with dire consequences…. A strange meeting takes place on a playing field between an officer on leave from the trenches and his former headmaster….
The settings and characters in Reggie Oliver’s fifth collection of ‘strange’ stories are as varied and unusual as ever, though, as in previous volumes, the theatre forms the milieu of a number of his tales. But the theatres are not just English ones, in the provinces and the West End: one is on the Black Sea; another in post-colonial Kenya. Themes are equally varied, but…[more]
Caitlín R. Kiernan’s short fiction was first published in 1995. Over the intervening decade and a half, she has proven not only one of dark fantasy and science fiction’s most prolific and versatile authors, but, to quote Ramsey Campbell, “One of the most accomplished writers in the field, and very possibly the most lyrical.” S. T. Joshi has written, “Kiernan’s witchery of words creates a mesmerizing effect that we haven’t seen since the days of Lovecraft and Bradbury.”
Two Worlds and In Between: The Best of Caitlín R. Kiernan (Volume One) presents a stunning retrospective of the first ten years of her work, a compilation of more than two hundred thousand words of short fiction, including many of her most acclaimed stories, as well as some of the author’s personal favorites, several previously uncollected, hard-to-find pieces, and her sf novella, The Dry Salvages, and a rare collaboration with Poppy Z. Brite. Destined to become the definitive look at the early…[more]