Sunday, October 31, 2021

Shapers of Worlds Volume II Science fiction and fantasy by authors featured on the Aurora Award-winning podcast The Worldshapers(Shapers of Worlds #2)


Shapers of Worlds Volume II is the second anthology of short fiction from authors featured on the Shapers of Worlds podcast edited by Edward Willett. Due out 2nd Nov 2021 from Shadowpaw Press, it's a hefty 522 pages and will be available in ebook format. Other editions available in physical print format. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately. 

The stories are varied, there were (as always) some which didn't grab me personally, but all were well written and competently plotted. They were mostly in the 4 star range(ish) with a a fair smattering of really standout stories. This is a well curated solid anthology of stories in the 3-5 star range. There are 24 stories in the anthology and most are previously unpublished fiction from very well known to new-to-me authors. The common thread is that the authors were all featured on the editor's podcast last year.

One reason I prefer collections and anthologies is that short fiction is really challenging.  It's spare and the author doesn't have a wealth of wordage to develop characters or the plotting.  Well written short fiction is a delight. I also love collections because if one story doesn't really grab me, there's another story just a few pages away.  I can only recall a few times where I've read a collection (or anthology) straight through from cover to cover.  

Four stars on average. It's a diverting read.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes. 

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