January 20th, 2010


Hart & Boot by Tim Pratt

It was tough work mustering up the courage to review a friend's book; it's almost as hard to review a FOAF's book.

Hart & Boot & Other Stories collects a baker's dozen of Pratt's fantasy short stories. I think even in the narrow date range of the stories in here, there's a welcome progression toward greater creativity. Some of the earlier ones are solid, but somewhat workmanlike, translations of myths (or other tropes) into a modern fantasy setting. Though they mostly avoid cliche, some bites definitely have that microwaved leftovers taste to them. Later stories unleash much more originality, with exotic worlds filled with a little more mystery, and less reliance on pat endings. I think "Dream Engine" and "Cup and Table" were my favorites of the lot.