This second Book Review Binge is to catch up with books I read in December, attempting to reach the summit of my Mount TBR Challenge for the year. I selected them from my Kindle on the basis they looked short, and they were on my TBR since before December last year. I found a surprising number of books that qualified as short, I’d had there for years, but weren’t on my TBR at all! Look out for those this time next year 🙂
The blurbs have been summarised to save space. We start with a couple of Anthologies from my favourite editors.
Ed. Juliana Rew
Third Flatiron Anthologies feature multiple winners of science fiction and fantasy reader polls and recommended reading lists.
“Infinite Lives: Short Tales of Longevity” is a new speculative fiction anthology with the themes of longevity, immortality, and technological life extension.
Review: Most of these stories are wonderful, and the rest are good! I spent a long time thinking of ideas for this anthology call, but never came up with anything half as good as the approaches taken in these works. The most dangerous thing is the opportunity to add the authors’ works to my TBR. First class.
Earth: Giants, Golems and Gargoyles (Elemental Anthologies, #2)
We come from dust, and to dust we return…
Earth is steady. Solid. Reliable. It is the source of life and the thing which sustains it. But it’s not always serene and peaceful. It takes a lot to stir the earth but when it does, things get dramatic. Quakes swallow cities. Oceans rise. Mountains crumble. Earth is not weak, and it knows no pity. (more)
Review: These are short stories embracing the earth and all those things that legends have drawn out of it. As is the way with anthologies, some are better than others, but these are all high quality and I enjoyed most of them. The one based on an Irish farm in the Land Girl era of World War 2 grabbed me most. I really enjoyed that and may look for more from that author. Most had more of a classic fantasy setting, and a few strayed into scifi. An excellent anthology for dipping into.
Incident on a Small Colony
This is an online short story from the Jani Killian series. From the author’s web site: “The events in Incident take place about five years after Captain Jani Kilian fled the idomeni homeworld of Shèrá and about thirteen years prior to the start of Code.”(less)
Review: A fast and furious novella starring someone who’s on the run and seems to have been surgically enhanced – badly. Borders on the weird to start with, but the narrative starts to make sense and the plot hangs together as time goes on. It’s a novella, and a quick read, a good one for an evening by the fire.
What’s In a Name?
There are names that have been passed down through thousands of years which have powerful and deep-rooted meaning to their bearers. Other names have been adopted from other languages, cultures and from the big screen. They all have one thing in common. They are with us from birth until the grave and they are how we are known to everyone that we meet. (more)
Review: A series of twenty short stories, many of flash fiction length, I felt, without resorting to a wordcount. Each focuses on a name, and the meaning or connotations of that name affect the person and the plot. I recognised some, but not most. The stories are many and varied, and often have a shocking, or disorientating twist right at the end. Very clever!
That gets me to the top of my Mount TBR Challenge! Whew!
Just one more book to read before tomorrow midnight and I’ll get my Goodreads target for the year too!