Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Marvelous & Strange Stories

There are times when nothing but a short story will do.  I enjoy the form, & sometimes it's just the amount of reading I have time for (& doesn't leave you hanging like a chapter in a book might).  Also,  I think it's handy if you want to check out some new authors without committing to a big book.  With that in mind, here are my two latest finds, which I think might appeal to sci-fi/fantasy fans & those who are looking for the fiction in the Hunger Games style:

Steampunk!: An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories edited by Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant
Billed as "A collection of fourteen fantasy stories by well-known authors, set in the age of steam engines and featuring automatons, clockworks, calculating machines, and other marvels that never existed", this collection features stories by well known young adult authors such as Cassandra Clare, Libba Bray, Cory Doctorow, M.T. Anderson, & Garth Nix, alongside Dylan Horrocks, Ysabeau Wilce, & others.

Zombies vs. Unicorns edited by Justine Larbalestier and Holly Black
This book marks my first encounter with a short story collection with something to prove:  it contains "twelve short stories by a variety of authors seek[ing] to answer the question of whether zombies are better than unicorns".  Libba Bray, Garth Nix, & Cassandra Clare are again featured here, with  Meg Cabot, Naomi Novik, Margo Lanagan, & others also contributing.

In a slightly darker vein, also consider:
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
Contains a vast array of literary legends at their most peculiar, including William Gibson, George R. R. Martin, Stephen King, Angela Carter, Kelly Link, Franz Kafka, China Miéville, Clive Barker, Haruki Murakami, M. R. James, Neil Gaiman, Mervyn Peake, and Michael Chabon.

For diehard fans of Suzanne Collins, might we also recommend her earlier work, The Underland Chronicles?  Beginning with Gregor the Overlander, this series is the story of eleven-year-old Gregor and his two-year-old sister, who are pulled into a strange underground world. Their arrival triggers an epic battle involving men, bats, rats, cockroaches, and spiders while on a quest foretold by ancient prophecy.

No comments: