Title: Legends of Australian Fantasy
Editors: Jack Dann & Jonathan Strahan
Authors: Garth Nix, Trudi Canavan, Juliet Marillier, Isobelle Carmody, Kim Wilkins, Sean Williams, D.M. Cornish, Ian Irvine, John Birmingham, Jennifer Fallon & Cecilia Dart-Thornton
In: Legends of Australian Fantasy (Jack Dann & Jonathan Strahan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Australian authors, Fantasy, Short story collections
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
5th sentence, 74th page: ‘And… and from the Charter, milady.’
From two of the best editors working today … These are the legends of Australian fantasy – eleven of Australia’s best-loved and most widely read writers … Gathered together by equally legendary editors Jack Dann and Jonathan Strahan to produce an entirely original compilation … Celebrate the legends of Australian fantasy. Extraordinary voices … extraordinary worlds. Come to Erith, to a faerie tale with a sting, or to Obernewtyn, long before the Seeker was born. Revisit a dark pocket of history for the Magician’s Guild or get caught up in the confusion of an endlessly repeating day in the Citadel. Cross the wall, where Charter magic is all that lies between you and death. A trip with a graverobber can be gruesome, and it’s hard to share the fear of a woman who must kill her husband if her child is to rule … A mysterious tale plays out in Sevenwaters. Catch up with Ros and Adi as they prepare for the greatest change of all. Other twists in these fabulous tales bring us to demonic destiny and an alternate WWII.
I love pursuing Australian authors – after all, I would love to be one one day, and they are my people. So, discovering that there is a book that features not one, not two, but nine of these phenomenal people made me break out in a huge grin. And I wasn’t disappointed. Actually, the main disappointment came when I finished the last novella and had to find a new anthology to go and read.
The pace of each of these nine novellas was entirely unique and, in most cases, quite unexpected. The only tie that they had to one another was that they are all fantasy stories, and they tied into a series or world created by the author. Which, ultimately means that I have another seven series to go out and buy (I already owned two). Sometimes, this kind of variety doesn’t really work. The stories don’t flow well and it is really just feels haphazard in how they’re collected. But, the short author introduction at the beginning of each story and the rationale behind the story worked brilliantly and made it a cohesive whole.
If you want a taste of the brilliance that some of Australia’s finest fantasy authors have to offer, I’d definitely recommend that you buy this book. Or borrow it, whatever tickles your fantasy. It was a fantastic welcome to a few new worlds and I’ve got a couple of new books to add to my shelves now.
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