Booklist Review



These 16 stories are credits to Ford, far too good to be left languishing in moldering obscurity in magazines and chapbooks, and on fugitive Web sites. So thanks, Golden Gryphon, for chasing them down and corralling them between book covers. They include "Creation," a nonstrident variation on the theme of Catholic childhood; "Out of the Canyon," set in the West and involving a curse; and the title story, which says a great deal about writing and fantasy (library trivia lovers will rejoice in the nonhuman assistant's name: Ashmolean). Then there is "The Honeyed Knot," which draws on Ford's many years teaching writing and the specific experience of having had a rapist-murderer among his pupils. The other 12 tales show off Ford's thematic reach, and one can't help noticing his command of language and skill at slowing the pace almost to stasis without becoming boring. Good stuff and good examples for short-story writers.

— Roland Green

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