The world of speculative fiction is expansive; it covers more than one country, one continent, one culture. Collected here are sixteen stories penned by authors from Thailand, the Philippines, China, Israel, Pakistan, Serbia, Croatia, Malaysia, and other countries across the globe.
Globe-trekking Israeli editor Tidhar (HebrewPunk) compiles an inconsistent medley of horror-tinged fantasy tales, which may confuse readers drawn in by a title and cover that suggest science fiction. Several stories seem included for their culturally and geographically diverse authors more than their narrative merit, such as Nir Yaniv's plodding "Cinderers," narrated by a pyromaniac with multiple personalities, and Yang Ping's "Wizard World," an uninspired take on life inside an online role-playing game. More focused and interesting are Dean Francis Alfar's whimsical "The Kite of Stars," which describes a journey across fantastical landscapes, and Tunku Halim's "Biggest Baddest Bomoh," where an office drone consults a deadly shaman for help with his love life. Even the better stories fail to find a fresh take on genre mainstays like ghosts, portals and cannibals. (Sept.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
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September 01, 2009
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