It’s that time. It is that time of the year when many of us want to give from the heart. We want to show people we love them; we want to spread some goodwill in this torn and aching world; we want to believe, again, for a time, in magic.
Or we just want to run away to some place that has never spawned the hideous phrase “holiday giving” and be done with it forever. Can’t see me for dust.
However, if you are staying in this world and you DO want to give some things to some people, might I suggest…
GUT WRENCHING, HILARIOUS, THOUGHT-PROVOKING, HOURS-OF-TOP-NOTCH-ENTERTAINMENT BOOKS?
I’ve had a wonderful year in publishing. Three new publications contain pieces I’ve written; and they’re collections of the short stuff, so even if you don’t like my story there’s lots of other stories to choose from, from – honestly – some of the best writers working today. And some of my oldsters are worth passing on. So, to make it easy, I’ve created a handy-dandy little reference with links and synopses and all that.
Happy times, and love, and books to all. That’s my chiefest wish.
Imaginarium 4: The Best Canadian Speculative Writing is a reprint anthology collecting speculative short fiction and poetry (science fiction, fantasy, horror, magic realism, etc.) that represents the best work published by Canadian writers in the 2014 calendar year. Put out by the fabulous CZPublications. Introduction by Margaret Atwood. That’s right. Margaret Atwood.
WHO THE HELL DOESN’T LIKE A BESTIARY??? The magic of bestiaries, or dictionaries of mythological creatures, has been captivating the human imagination since ancient times. Now, Stone Skin Press brings a fresh take on these compendiums of the fantastic with its latest anthology—Gods, Memes and Monsters. Featuring over sixty authors, this stunning international volume offers entries and short stories that range from the horrific to the humorous. The bestiary shed lights on familiar beasts that are coping in our modern era, including gorgons, minotaurs, and mantichores. It also introduces newly discovered creatures such as meme mosquitoes, trashsquatches, and urbantelopes that are thriving in the cyber age.
Playground of Lost Toys: a dynamic collection of stories that explore the mystery, awe and dread that we may have felt as children when encountering a special toy. But it goes further, to the edges of space, where the mind plays its own games. We enter a world where the magic may not have been lost, where a toy plays for keeps or computers and gods vie for the upper hand. Dolls, stuffed animals, wooden games of skill, ancient artifacts misinterpreted, and items that seek a life or even revenge; these lost toys and games bring tales of companionship, loss, revenge, hope, murder, cunning, and love, to be unearthed in the sandbox. Edited by Colleen Anderson and Ursula Pflug. A truly wonderful collection, people.
For the SF fans in your life: in Carbide Tipped Pens, over a dozen of today’s most creative imaginations carry on the grand tradition of such legendary masters as Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, and John W. Campbell, while bringing hard science fiction into the 21st century by extrapolating from the latest scientific developments and discoveries. Ranging from ancient China to the outer reaches of the solar system, this outstanding collection of original stories, written by an international roster of authors, finds wonder, terror, and gripping human drama in topics as diverse as space exploration, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, climate change, alternate history, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, interplanetary war, and even the future of baseball. Edited by Ben Bova and Eric Choi.
Kate Story’s debut novel Blasted is an unlikely marriage of Newfoundland’s oldest traditional lore with the contemporary urban world of St. John’s and Toronto. The result is raw and strange and hilarious and affecting. Ruby Jones—itinerant waitress, sometime nude model, budding alcoholic—admits early on that tenderness and rage are her “heart language.” Blasted offers both in spades. – Michael Crummey
Honourable Mention for the Sunburst Award: Canadian Literature of the Fantastic
(Sadly, Blasted has been remaindered! Order it while you still can. And you can contact me directly for copies too!)
Wrecked Upon This Shore: I fell in love with these characters: saintly and monstrous, wrecked but not lost —castaways all. Kate Story is one of those rare writers who can plumb the darkness and retrieve from the depths a jewel, a truth, luminous and redemptive. A magical and moving novel. Prepare to be transported. – Jessica Grant, author of Come, Thou Tortoise