Editors: Datlow, Ellen and Terri Windling
ISBN: 978-1-4231-4619-3
Review Issue Date: December 1, 2012

Any librarian who has been asked for books just like The Hunger Games will appreciate how this collection of short stories will satiate readers hungry for tales of futuristic woe. As the title implies, these stories do not describe the (political, environmental, socioeconomic) disasters but instead describe events post-apocalypse, what life is like afterward. The variety of tales and writing styles is wide. Cecil Castellucci offers a story where cities have vanished and knowledge of science is lost, but society somehow still runs via strict rules about cross-breeding. Jeffrey Ford presents a coming-of-age tale where becoming an adult means getting your own firearm. Not that far-fetched, but when it is law that everyone must be armed, and when teachers joke around by aiming their handguns at students who misbehave in class, things can get dicey fast. Genevieve Valentine presents a tale where the media manipulates survivors for the government, staging wars, family reunions, and touching scenes of bravery and hope. The actors in these mini-movies best remain anonymous because terrible things could happen if the public finds out about them.

The sixteen other tales cover everything from lycanthropy and mutation to the lengths one would go to find lost family members. These are good, smart, well-written science fiction pieces. They throw readers into the tale, and they must figure out things from context as they read. Teens seeking a dystopian fix, as well fans of science fiction, will be well pleased by this book.—Geri Diorio.

For any lover of dystopian or post-apocalyptic literature, After is a must-read. The disasters in the collection are incredibly varied and creative. Despite the bleak premise, the stories do not all strike a gloomy tone; the authors capture many emotions, ranging from poignant to comical; from stirring to chilling. Even given the short length of each piece, the characters are all very easy to get attached to. Each story will leave readers craving more of the author’s work. 5Q, 4P.—Holly Storm, Teen Reviewer.
From Book Slut/ Teenage Horror
September column by Colleen Mondor
Older teens should also check out The Best Horror of the Year Volume Four, edited by Ellen Datlow. It includes a host of stories by the likes of Stephen King (although I think his story is one of the weakest), Margo Lanagan, Peter Straub, A.C. Wise (who tells us what happened to the "final girl" in a particularly frightful horror movie), and Simon Bestwick (consider this the antithesis to Ray Bradbury's "The Foghorn"). Datlow's anthologies continue to be standouts and are always a safe bet for frightful reads of epic proportions.
A wonderful podcast from Last Short Story: A Review of Short SF/F:
Ian Mond, Jonathan Strahan, and Tansy Rayner Roberts discuss in detail :
"The Segment," Genevieve Valentine
"Valedictorian," N.K. Jemisin
"Blood Drive," Jeffrey Ford
"The Easthound," Nalo Hopkinson
"Fake Plastic Trees," Caitlin R. Kiernan
"The Marker," Cecil Castellucci
And talk a bit about the overall anthology, which they love:

A monthly review of short science fiction and fantasy
Pre-season Episode 2: After, Nineteen Stories of Apocalypse and Dystopia Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling eds (Hyperion)

Beware spoilers!
Publishers' Weekly will be reviewing it officially March 26th.

Sum-up: The variety of concepts and styles on display, and Datlow’s comprehensive introduction, will please horror readers of all stripes. (May)
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( Aug. 23rd, 2011 11:49 am)
Quick and dirty rave for Teeth from Realms of Fantasy
Digital Domains: A Decade of Science Fiction & Fantasy. Prime. Jul. 2010. c.312p. ed. by Ellen Datlow. ISBN 978-1-60701-208-5. pap. $14.95. FANTASY

From James Blaylock’s eerie tale of one man’s discovery of time’s fluidity (“Thirteen Phantasms”) to the terrible inevitability in Simon Ing’s story of a relationship between invader and native (“Russian Vine”), the 15 stories in this collection display the vibrancy and variety of online fiction as seen in the virtual “pages” of three related online magazines: Omni Online , Event Horizon , and SciFiction. Contributors include Paul Park, Jeffrey Ford, Kim Newman, Karen Joy Fowler, and other writers of both analog and digital fiction. VERDICT The easy availability of fiction on the web attracts a large following, and this volume is proof of its staying power. Suitable for lovers of short fiction of all genres.
Digital Domains
Edited by Ellen Datlow, Prime, $14.95 paper (312p) ISBN 978-1-60701-208-5
Datlow (The Best Horror of the Year) collects 15 compelling short works that first
appeared between 1996 and 2005 in three pioneering online magazines: OMNI Online,
Event Horizon, and SCIFICTION. The stories vary widely, but all shine with
intelligence, thoughtfulness, and sly humor. James Blaylock messes with time and
reality in "Thirteen Phantasms," the first online publication to win the World
Fantasy Award. In Paul Park's "Get a Grip," one man's reality is definitely not the
same as anyone else's. In "Harbingers," Severna Park brings aliens to war-torn
Tanzania. Kim Newman takes wicked, witty aim at the British civil service,
scientists, and professors in "Tomorrow Town." Datlow has compiled an eminently
readable group of first-rate short fiction by authors who dared to push forward into
the new, uncharted medium of the Internet. (July)
ellen_datlow: (Default)
( Nov. 21st, 2009 01:27 pm)
I think this came in as a google alert while I was in San Jose so I forgot to post it. It's a very nice review of Best Horror of the Year, volume one from Innsmouth Free Press.
Thanks Adam, for reminding me).
*The Best Horror of the Year: Vol. One Edited by Ellen Datlow. Night Shade (, $15.95 paper (324p) ISBN 978-1-59780-161-4

After 22 years of pulling the horror content for the now-discontinued Year's Best Fantasy and Horror series, Datlow (Lovecraft Unbound) goes solo with this stellar start to a new “best of” annual. As in the past, her picks confirm that “horror” is a storytelling approach with endlessly inventive possibilities. In E. Michael Lewis's “Cargo,” a haunting Twilight Zone–type tale, an airplane picks up something otherworldly as part of its latest transport. Euan Harvey's creepy “Harry and the Monkey” turns an urban legend into reality. R.B. Russell's “Loup-garou” is a highly original shape-shifter story with a subtle psychological twist, and Daniel LeMoal's “Beach Head” a bracing conte cruel with a Lord of the Flies cast. In addition to the richly varied stories, Datlow provides her usual comprehensive coverage of the year in horror in an introduction that's indispensable reading for horror aficionados. (Dec.)
Yay! At the SF Site--a couple of excerpts and the entire Featured Review
...Not one of these stories is anything less than excellent.
...There's a subtle complexity, a questioning of traditional fairy tale morals, a subversion of the familiar, and taken as a whole, it gets the point across without overdoing it. So in that regard, Troll's-Eye View is a splendid anthology."
and ends with this:
"Sure to be one of the best anthologies of 2009."

I like that. Here's the rest of it
Unfortunately they have the publisher wrong--I've asked for a correction...and I'm not sure how I feel about being called a "doyenne"--it makes me feel so...old.
Columbia Tribune, Literary links

and here's a review by Cassiphone from the Australian review site Not if you were the last short story on Earth that expresses pleasant surprise that the stories are not pastiches of Poe
She reviews "Illimitable Domain," Kim Newman, "The Mountain House," by Sharyn McCrumb, "Sleeping with the Angels," by M. Rickert, and "Truth and Bone," by Pat Cadigan.

Jonathan Strahan, who has also just read the book, says the following on his blog, Notes From Coode Street, Books I'm looking forward to "It’s likely to stand amongst the year’s finest anthologies, so be sure to check it out."
ellen_datlow: (Default)
( Nov. 8th, 2008 12:02 pm)
I just discovered the first review of Poe: 19 New Tales of Suspense, Dark Fantasy, and Horror Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe, my new original anthology out from Solaris in January.

Poe: 19 New Tales of Suspense, Dark Fantasy, and Horror Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe Edited by Ellen Datlow. Solaris (, $15 paper (352p) ISBN 978-1-84416-595-7
This anthology's title notwithstanding, the 19 original stories commissioned for it seem largely devoid of the Poe principle. Kim Newman (“Illimitable Domain”) contributes a gleefully subversive alternate history in which Poe movie adaptations take over American culture; John Langan (“Technicolor”) offers an incisive deconstruction of Poe's “Masque of the Red Death” that also functions as a magnificently creepy horror tale; and Delia Sherman (“The Red Piano”) proffers a horror romance whose villain is clearly modeled on Poe's sound-sensitive Roderick Usher. For the most part, however, readers will have to work toward the explanatory note each author provides at the story's end to see which Poesque resonance he or she intended. Still, Datlow (Inferno) has assembled an all-star lineup and chosen inventive stories whose quality are certainly an extension of Poe's tradition of excellent weird fiction. (Jan.)

Good review overall but very thin--and I hope readers will not read the anthology trying to figure out what Poe story/poem/essay inspired each story as they read it--that's why the afterwords are there. Another note-- this was obviously not the same reviewer of Peter Straub's recent excellent all-reprint anthology of contemporary horror, Poe's Children, which has nothing to do with Poe or his writing at all.

You can preorder the book at amazon:

I think it's fascinating that different reviewers are pointing out completely different stories as favorites and sometimes stories they hate. To me, it shows that the book has a wide enough appeal to be enjoyed by more than one audience and that most of the stories are making an impact, something I advocate.

Alankria found a few of the stories "lousy" but it's obvious from comments about those stories that Alankria didn't "get" them. eg. Alankria calls the "ending of [The Passion of Azazel] utterly unbelievable and daft."

Ah... unlike the rest of the story wherein a goat golem is created.
Alankria apparently missed the climax of "Gladiolus Exposed."

Just fyi, my mom (not a science fiction reader) ONLY really liked the Cadigan story because she could get into it more easily that an sf story such as "Special Economics" and because she knew boys like Jimmy when she was young. I hope the contributors aren't too insulted by my mom. Never fear, I'm insulted enough for all of you! :-)
Just pointed out to me by Jeff Ford:

Final lines:
"Definitely pick the book up because there are more great stories here than good stories, as well as more good stories than mediocre ones. Get what I’m saying, people? It’s worth the money and your time."

and Nick Kaufmann is raving:
Here are the last two paragraphs:
The Del Rey Book of Science Fiction and Fantasy is a beautifully designed book, too. From the Terry Gilliamesque cover art by Christian Northeast to Karin Batten's text design, you can tell a lot of thought and creativity went into the publication. That's always nice to see, as it indicates the publisher believes in the book enough to put effort into it and isn't simply churning out something disposable to fill a slot. And this is definitely an anthology worth believing in.

If you like speculative fiction that's creative, original and well written, check out The Del Rey Book of Science Fiction and Fantasy. You won't be disappointed.
The whole review is here:


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