REVIEW: “Halsing for the Anchylose” by Stewart C. Baker

Review of Stewart C. Baker, “Halsing for the Anchylose,” Fantasy Magazine 72 (October 2021): 29 — Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

This poem managed to tell a complex story in a compact fashion. Reading it, I felt that it hinted at so much more than it was able to say, and I wondered if the title held clues to what the “more” was. Unfortunately, no dictionary shed any light on either term, so I remain intrigued, but baffled.

REVIEW: “Emily and the What-If Imp” by Gwynne Garfinkle

Review of Gwynne Garfinkle, “Emily and the What-If Imp,” Fantasy Magazine 72 (October 2021): 16-17 — Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

I think lots of people, especially people who take solace in reading and writing speculative fiction, have What-If imps of their own, hanging around and making unwarranted trouble, or if not a What-If imp, one of its cousins. But I think there is some solace in reading this story, whatever kind of imp you’ve got.

REVIEW: “Heirlooms” by Zebib K. A.

Review of Zebib K. A., “Heirlooms,” Fantasy Magazine 72 (October 2021): 11-15 — Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

The narrator and her roommate have recently moved to a new apartment, in a historically Black neighborhood that is succumbing to gentrification. Other people in the building have said they don’t feel safe in the neighborhood, though we the readers are not told why. Why desperately creepy beings start tapping on the narrator’s window in the middle of the night, we begin to get a sense of why — but is she the only one that sees them?

I certainly didn’t expect a horror story when I started this, but that’s definitely what I got!

REVIEW: “Breath of the Dragon King” by Allison King

Review of Allison King, “Breath of the Dragon King,” Fantasy Magazine 72 (October 2021): 9-10 — Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

Drea King’s life began in tragedy, when she was born in the wrong year in a culture that values dragons far beyond rabbits. But the bigger tragedy is the life of an immigrant child, “scared to be separated from their old country and to be freaks in their new one” (p. 10). Drea turns her own personal tragedy into a way of helping all the other Dragons of ’88 in this lovely, hopefully little story.