Customer Review

14 June 2016
An interesting compilation of stories with a consistently high standard of writing, although If you have an issue with ‘adult themes’ etc. you may prefer the companion anthology ‘Nice People’ (1) . A number of genres are represented – there are many fantasy / sci-fi stories but also crime, mystery and detective works with a few real ‘genre-benders’ like Roaring Twenties which takes place in a speakeasy in the 1920s with an ‘unusual’ clientele. This is both a strength and a weakness as the editors have clearly assumed that if you like one genre you will also like others which is not necessarily so – I found the mystery ‘Provenance’ boring (I guessed the ending half-way through) and the crime / comedy ‘Bad Brass’ far too long and not funny enough, although I did like a few of the others – the murder / mystery ‘Diamonds from Tequila’ is a stand-out for anyone who shares my admittedly warped sense of humour. Surprisingly the George RR Martin story ‘The Rogue Prince’ was also disappointing – it finished without explaining why he was a rogue and the endless list of Targaryen royals and others was rather tedious. There are however enough 5-star stories to make the collection as a whole worth buying even though I suspect not many readers will like all of them equally.
Like all good anthologies it also gives a thumbnail sketch of the author before each story with references to their other works, awards won etc. which I found very handy and will use in future when looking for some of my favourites.
(1) I lied – there is no such book. Rogues has clearly had a bad influence on me ;-)
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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