Rocky Mountain News Review



UNREAL WORLDS

The Silver Gryphon
Edited by Gary Turner and Marty Halpern (Golden Gryphon, $27.95).
Grade: A

Founded in 1997 by the late Jim Turner, longtime editor of Arkham House, Golden Gryphon has rapidly become the best small-press publisher of fantasy and science-fiction. Concentrating on single-author story collections, Golden Gryphon has produced volumes by such notable Unreal authors as Joe Lansdale, Michael Bishop, James Patrick Kelly, Neal Barrett Jr. and Lucius Shepard.

Current editor and publisher Gary Turner decided to celebrate the publication of Golden Gryphon's 25th book by making it an anthology featuring an original story by each of its featured living writers. The result is The Silver Gryphon, sure to be a candidate for all the awards as best anthology of the year.

Editors usually put outstanding stories at the beginning and the end of anthologies. Turner and Halpern must have had a problem deciding among all these gems, but no one could fault their picks.

Leading off the book is Kelly's "Mother," a cautionary tale about a woman who plans for her daughter to save Earth from the aliens who have enslaved it.

Lansdale provides his usual bizarre wit at the end with "Fire Dog," in which a man becomes the Dalmatian at the local fire station.

Other highlights include Barrett Jr.'s "Kwantum Babes," about a couple of science nerds on the make at a convention; Warren Rochelle's "The Golden Boy," in which a teacher meets with disaster on a field trip in the future; "The American Monarchy," Richard Lupoff's offbeat take on what would have happened if the 2000 election had ended in a tie; and "What's up Tiger Lily?," Paul Di Filippo's paean to the films of the past in a future where anything is possible.

You'd better snap this one up quickly. Golden Gryphon is all about quality, not quantity, and only 3,000 copies of The Silver Gryphon were printed, so the anthology won't be available for long.

— Mark Graham, Rocky Mountain News, June 27, 2003



 

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