Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Four Summoner's Tales

Four Summoner's Tales features the work of Kelley Armstrong, Christopher Golden, David Liss, and Jonathan Maberry. It's available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and BooksAMillion.

Four terror-inducing novellas from acclaimed bestselling authors Kelley Armstrong, David Liss, Christopher Golden, and Jonathan Maberry beginning with the premise: “A stranger comes to town, offering to raise the townsfolk’s dearly departed from the dead—for a price.”
In Kelley Armstrong’s “Suffer the Children,” an acute diphtheria outbreak kills most of the children in an isolated village in nineteen-century Ontario. Then a stranger arrives and offers to bring the children back to life. He wants money, of course, an extravagant sum, but more importantly, but for each child resurrected, one villager must voluntarily offer his life... 
In David Liss’s “A Bad Season for Necromancy,” a con man on the margins of eighteenth-century British society discovers a book that reveals the method for bringing the dead back to life. After considering just how far he would go to avoid bringing his violent father back, he realizes the real value of this book. Instead of getting people to pay him to revive their departed, he will get people to pay him not to... 
 In “Pipers” by Christopher Golden, the Texas Border Volunteers wage a private war against drug smuggling by Mexican cartels in a modern-day South Texas town, complete with an indestructible army of the risen dead... 
In “Alive Day” by Jonathan Maberry, a US Army sergeant must dive into the underworld of modern-day Afghanistan to try and barter for the release of his team, never dreaming of the horrors that await him..

My Review
Four Summoner's Tales by Kelley Armstrong
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for a review - it was Armstrong and Maberry that tempted me into requesting this book so I was surprised when I had trouble getting into Maberry's story, Alive Day, which is based on a series featuring his character Captain Joe Ledger. I've stumbled across a few of Maberry's short stories and have enjoyed them; I was excited for the opportunity to be introduced to this series, which turned out to be very militaristic - a paranormal government/spy thriller. The story was well-written but it's not my usual cup of tea.

I expected to like Kelley Armstrong's story because I'm a fan of her paranormal/urban romances. Suffer the Children was my favorite story in this collection, simply because it was much darker than she usually writes. I enjoyed seeing her break the usual mold - she did morbid very well.

David Liss's story, A Bad Season for Necromancy, is my second favorite story. I loved the narration and will be checking out more of Liss' work.

Christopher Golden's story, Pipers, threw zombies into the world of drug cartel, which was a nice break from the traditional zombie themes we all know so well, but the ending was predictable.

I enjoyed the motivation behind this book - that each author was given one premise that births four very different stories. I'd like to see more collections of this nature.

View all my reviews

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