Publishers Weekly Ray Bradbury's recent death renders this loving tribute anthology-a "homecoming" of "fantastic brethren from all over the world," as Bradbury writes in the introduction-all the more poignant. The nameless narrator of Neil Gaiman's "The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury" has forgotten Bradbury's name, but not his stories. The heroine of Alice Hoffman's "Conjure" has her destiny and her closest friendship changed by Something Wicked This Way Comes. Bonnie Jo Campbell tells the origin story of an illustrated man in "The Tattoo," and Bayo Ojikutu's "Reservation" describes a dystopia that is a near cousin to that of Fahrenheit 451. Some of the best stories pay tribute in their evocation of Bradburyian themes: the vast possibilities and indescribable melancholy of childhood in Joe Hill's "By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain," the profundity of loss in John McNally's "The Phone Call," and the renewing power of storytelling in Robert McCammon's "Children of the Bedtime Machine." Bradbury biographer Weller and horror doyen Castle have produced a fine remembrance of a great writer, a deeply moving testament to his enduring appeal. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Book list *Starred Review* It's important to know the credentials of the editors of this wondrous anthology of short stories. Weller is the author of the authorized biography of Ray Bradbury, The Bradbury Chronicles: The Life of Ray Bradbury (2005), and Castle is a veteran short story writer and editor of On Writing Horror (2006), a helpful guide to publishing horror novels and short stories. Editorial interest and experience converge here to produce an exciting book. Twenty-six writers celebrate Bradbury through never-before-published short stories, and their offerings bear the acknowledgment that the inspiration for incident, tone, or effect derives from their respect and admiration for the ever-popular sf and fantasy writer products of Bradbury's looming shadow, as Weller says in his introduction. In the cases of these enticing short works, then, Bradbury was each writer's master. What is amazing is the range of authors. The roster includes distinguished writers both expected and not, among the latter, Alice Hoffman, Margaret Atwood, and Bonnie Jo Campbell. What is also amazing is the potential audience for this treasury, which would include lovers of short fiction regardless of any previous attraction to sf or fantasy. Public libraries should acquire the book and cross reference it between sf and general fiction collections.--Hooper, Brad Copyright 2010 Booklist
Publishers Weekly Datlow's "experimental" crowdfunded horror anthology is nicely unthemed, avoiding vampires, werewolves, and zombies while including ghosts, witches, and newly trendy wendigos. The last merges quite nicely with an Arctic setting in Siobhan Carroll's "Wendigo Nights," one of the standouts. Other highlights include always reliable, always evolving authors like Pat Cadigan, Caitlin Kiernan, and Michael Marshall Smith, whose "Power" is a rare science-fiction horror tale. Gemma Files's "A Wish from a Bone" launches the volume with an elegant update to the classic "wrath of ancient gods" plot, and Helen Marshall's "In the Year of Omens" is perfectly creepy. There are a few misses-Gary McMahon's "Kaiju" feels incomplete, while Terry Dowling and John Langan both turn in surprisingly subpar tales-but on balance, this is an excellent anthology for horror fans, with a nice range of tones and styles and some intriguing new voices. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly This anthology addresses one of the most basic questions of human existence: what happens when we die? The answers come in the form of 34 stories that explore diverse notions of ghosts (Edward M. Erdelac's "Sea of Dreams") and demons (William Meikle's "Be Quiet at the Back"), trapped souls (Steve Cameron's "I Was the Walrus"), mishaps in resurrection (Lisa Morton's "The Resurrection Policy"), and unbearable eternities (David Tallerman's "Prisoner of Peace"). The newly deceased protagonists may be confused, angry, resigned, or unaware that they are dead, so even those vignettes with more exposition than plot convey a sense of personal discovery (if perhaps of the hopeless kind). Though the majority of the pieces come from the darker side of the genre, a solid minority are playful, clever, or full of wonder. This makes for good variety but a bit of emotional whiplash, somewhat mitigated by Guignard's clever introductions and Audra Phillips's portraitlike illustrations. This strong and well-themed anthology is sure to make readers contemplative even while it creates nightmares. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.