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Short Story Anthologies

November 24, 2009 - Amy Phelps
A short story anthology shows what can happen when you mess with gods, otherwordly beings and shapeshifters in "The Trouble with Heroes" edited by Denise Little.

With stories from Kristine Grayson, Adrian Nikolas Phoenix, Mike Moscoe, Jean Rabe, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Terry Hayman, Annie Reed, David H. Hendrickson, Phaedra M. Weldon, Pauline J. Alma, Robert T. Jeschonek, Laura Resnick, John Alvin Pitts, Dayle A. Dermatis, Dory Crowe, J. Steven York, Peter Orullian, Janna Silverstein, Ken Scholes, Steven Mohan Jr., Allan Rousselle and Kristin Kathryn Rusch, all the stories show what happens when ordinary people get caught up in the extraordinary world of heroes. Whether its a dating agency attracting the attention of a god, a queen coming across Heracles or a woman seduced by Zeus, many are left a bit troubled after their interactions with "heroes." There's also a new look at the heroes from stories, like the real arrangement between Cinderella and the Prince, why Maid Marian would hook up with a smelly ruffian and the story of the woman, er, muse behind the pied piper.

My favorite story, "The Horror in the Living Room" takes a new look at the world of H.P. Lovecraft, as his housekeeper must deal with unspeakable horrors showing up at all hours attempting to drive her mad and give their stories to Lovecraft - before he destroys them. Tentacles and madness may come, but it's just an ordinary day for the two main characters, and that's what makes it fun. "The Trouble with Heroes" is published by Daw. It is $7.99.


Another short story collection available now is "The Dragon Book" edited by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois.

This hardcover treat features stories from Cecelia Holland, Naomi Novik, Jonathan Stroud, Kage Baker, Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple, Liz Williams, Peter S.Beagle, Diana Gabaldon and Samuel Sykes, Garth Nix, Sean Williams, Tad Williams, Harry Turtledove, Diana Wynne Jones, Gregory Maguire, Bruce Coville, Tanith Lee, Tamora Pierce, Mary Rosenblum and Andy Duncan. Whether it's classic fairy tale dragons or shapeshifters in a modern setting, whether they're good or evil, these are all great stories for dragon fans.

One of the best stories in the book is "Oakland Dragon Blues" about a police officer that finds a very unusual roadblock - a dragon. But what's even more unusual is where the dragon came from and who is going to have to be the one to vanquish it. Written by Peter S. Beagle, the author of "The Last Unicorn" this story is a memorable one.

"The Dragon Book" is published by Ace. It is $24.95 and 433 pages long.


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