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By Singing Light

Pretty much everything here originally appeared at my actual blog: By Singing Light. I particularly focus on upper middle-grade and young adult books. I also enjoy adult genre books, especially speculative fiction.

Currently reading

The Lost Tools of Learning and the Mind of the Maker
Dorothy L. Sayers
The Seventh Bride
T. Kingfisher
Hope in the Dark
Rebecca Solnit
Outrun the Moon
Stacey Lee
Midnight Thief
Livia Blackburne
The White Hart
Nancy Springer
The Great Wall Of Lucy Wu
Wendy Wan-Long Shang
Jim C. Hines
Elizabeth & Leicester: Power, Passion, Politics
Sarah Gristwood
The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm - Patricia A. McKillip, Charles Vess, Tanith Lee, Gregory Maguire, Ellen Datlow, Charles de Lint, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Kelly Link, Jeffrey Ford, A.M. Dellamonica, Emma Bull, Terri Windling, Gregory Frost, Ellen Steiber, Hiromi Goto, Bill Congreve, Nan Fry, Steve Berman, Bruc ed. by Terri Windling and Ellen Datlow

I finished this one in a hurry last night because it was due back at the library. So my thoughts on the last few stories are sketchier than for some of the earlier ones.

I liked "Catnyp" by Delia Sherman quite a bit. It had a fun twist on even the Beauty and the Beast, heroine saving the hero, theme. And I (naturally) loved the library setting.

"Your Garnet Eyes" by Katherine Vaz was gorgeous: beautifully written, with lovely characterization, and an unusual and interesting setting.

I found "The Faery Handbag" by Kelly Link to be unexpected and haunting. It was also a little bittersweet in the way some fairy tales are. It had a sense of hope, without tying things up too neatly.

I really, really liked "Immersed in Matter" by Nina Kiriki Hoffman. I felt that it successfully managed to avoid the "I'm doing a fairy tale variation now" feeling. There was also a lovely use of first person, and I really enjoyed the world building, which felt unusually complete for a short story.

The major disappointment of the book was "Undine" by Patricia McKillip. The conflict felt out of place and forced, as well as very Message-y (I don't care what the message is, if I feel like the author is writing a story to make a point, I'm not going to like it).

I also liked A. M. Dellamonica's "Dream-eaters," which restored my faith in urban fantasy (I am not keen on that genre, for the most part. I may have read all the wrong books though).

Overall, I thought it was a strong anthology, certainly much stronger than the other Windling/Datlow anthologies I've read.

Book source: Western Oregon