Booklist Review

Golden Gryphon's twenty-fifth book consists of 20 new stories by 20 authors it has already published. From the annals of alternate history, R. Garcia y Robertson presents a medieval Middle East swashbuckler; Richard A. Lupoff, a goofy outcome of the 2000 U.S. election. James Patrick Kelly and Richard Paul Russo provide bleak visions of a near future in which the gaps between controllers and controlled, and between rich and poor, are yawning chasms. In Paul Di Filippo's near future, however, democracy has triumphed through technology, though his hero has to scramble to save it. George Zebrowski offers a story of lovers parted by parallel realities; Ian Watson, of lovers sundered by population control. Obscure pop-cultural figures — horror movie actor George Zucco and bluegrass precursor Charlie Poole — star in Howard Waldrop's take on senile dementia and Andy Duncan's Appalachian tall tale, respectively. Best of (a very good) show: Jeffrey Ford's rendering of a grown son observing his mother's death — a small masterpiece of affection, though it is neither fantasy nor sf. — Ray Olson

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