Saturday, June 5, 2010

A Couple from Me

BLOCKADE BILLY, Stephen King, Scribner, $14.99, 132 pages, ISBN: 9781451608212, mentioned by Barry Hunter.

Harriet has already reviewed the Cemetery Dance edition of this eerie baseball novelette and all of King’s readers who missed out on that edition will need to pick this one up. King, again, shows his love of the game and tells a different kind of story.

As an added bonus, Scribner has added “Morality”, a story that appeared in Esquire and if I remember correctly featured the story written on Bar Raffelli’s body on the cover. Too bad they didn’t reprint the cover as well.

This is a volume for King fans, baseball fans and especially for the completists. Don’t miss this one; it’s another home run from King.

SWORDS & DARK MAGIC, edited by Jonathan Strahan and Lou Anders, EOS, $15.99, 522 pages, ISBN: 9780061723810, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

In the past few years it seems, at least to me, that fantasy has been going through a change and the old fashioned sword and sorcery stories have been few in number and appeared headed for extinction.

Fortunately, this volume proves my fears were premature and Sword & Sorcery is indeed alive and thriving. This volume features some old friends and some new writers to keep the genre alive.

Michael Moorcock returns with a new Elric tale. Tanith Lee shows she is as powerful today as she was when THE BIRTHGRAVE first saw light. Gene Wolfe and Bob Silverberg show their nimble touches again. New writers Caitlain Kiernan, Tim Lebbon, Greg Keys, Scott Lynch and others show how they have picked up the mantle and will wear it proudly into the future.

This volume comes along as we start a new decade, one that looks to be filled with Swords & Sorcery. It’s a magical volume.

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