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Fantasy Gone Wrong

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Everyone knows that heroes should triumph, dragons should be slain, and maidens should be rescued. But what if things don't go according to plan? Here are 16 fun tales of magic gone awry - from an author whose unicorn protagonist takes control of the story to a person who can hear food talking with strange events and surprising consequences in between. “Introduction” copyri Everyone knows that heroes should triumph, dragons should be slain, and maidens should be rescued. But what if things don't go according to plan? Here are 16 fun tales of magic gone awry - from an author whose unicorn protagonist takes control of the story to a person who can hear food talking with strange events and surprising consequences in between. “Introduction” copyright © 2006 by Brittiany A. Koren “The Poisoned Chalice” copyright © 2006 by Brian Stableford “Battle of Wits” copyright © 2006 by Mickey Zucker Reichert “The Hero of Killorglin” copyright © 2006 by Fiona Patton “Goblin Lullaby” copyright © 2006 by Jim C. Hines “Crumbs” copyright © 2006 by Esther M. Friesner “Fellow Traveler” copyright © 2006 by Donald J. Bingle “Food Fight” copyright © 2006 by Thranx, Inc. “Moonlighting” copyright © 2006 by Devon Monk “The Rose, the Farmboy and the Gnome” copyright © 2006 by Phaedra M. Weldon “A Day at the Unicorn Races” copyright © 2006 by Christina F. York “Dragonslayer: Being the True and Terrible Tale of a Fearsome Meeting Between a Man and a Monster” copyright © 2006 by Jana Paniccia “The Murder of Mr. Wolf” copyright © 2006 by Josepha Sherman “New Yorke Snow” copyright © 2006 by Susan Sizemore “Meet the Madfeet” copyright © 2006 by Michael Jasper “Finder’s Keeper” copyright © 2006 by Janny Wurts “Is This Real Enough” copyright © 2006 by Lisanne Norman


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Everyone knows that heroes should triumph, dragons should be slain, and maidens should be rescued. But what if things don't go according to plan? Here are 16 fun tales of magic gone awry - from an author whose unicorn protagonist takes control of the story to a person who can hear food talking with strange events and surprising consequences in between. “Introduction” copyri Everyone knows that heroes should triumph, dragons should be slain, and maidens should be rescued. But what if things don't go according to plan? Here are 16 fun tales of magic gone awry - from an author whose unicorn protagonist takes control of the story to a person who can hear food talking with strange events and surprising consequences in between. “Introduction” copyright © 2006 by Brittiany A. Koren “The Poisoned Chalice” copyright © 2006 by Brian Stableford “Battle of Wits” copyright © 2006 by Mickey Zucker Reichert “The Hero of Killorglin” copyright © 2006 by Fiona Patton “Goblin Lullaby” copyright © 2006 by Jim C. Hines “Crumbs” copyright © 2006 by Esther M. Friesner “Fellow Traveler” copyright © 2006 by Donald J. Bingle “Food Fight” copyright © 2006 by Thranx, Inc. “Moonlighting” copyright © 2006 by Devon Monk “The Rose, the Farmboy and the Gnome” copyright © 2006 by Phaedra M. Weldon “A Day at the Unicorn Races” copyright © 2006 by Christina F. York “Dragonslayer: Being the True and Terrible Tale of a Fearsome Meeting Between a Man and a Monster” copyright © 2006 by Jana Paniccia “The Murder of Mr. Wolf” copyright © 2006 by Josepha Sherman “New Yorke Snow” copyright © 2006 by Susan Sizemore “Meet the Madfeet” copyright © 2006 by Michael Jasper “Finder’s Keeper” copyright © 2006 by Janny Wurts “Is This Real Enough” copyright © 2006 by Lisanne Norman

30 review for Fantasy Gone Wrong

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kyle Kurtzal

    I really wanted to like this. This books idea of twisting fairytales by giving them a real world spin took the fun out of them instead of making them funner. Want to read about Little Red Riding Hood preparing her income taxes? Then this book is for you.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Grimward

    Very humorous, light and entertaining. In particular, enjoyed Alan Dean Foster's "Food Fight" and Janny Wurts' "Finder's Keeper", but the rest are all quite good, too.

  3. 4 out of 5

    StLOrca

    Need a fun read? Try “Fantasy Gone Wrong", edited by Martin H. Greenberg. Greenberg, along with Ellen Datlow, is one of the premiere curators of SF and fantasy fiction, and he's just as good with this collection. This time around, he focuses on magic that doesn't quite work the way you'd think. Most of the stories are clever rather than funny, but the funny ones have me rolling. Of particular note is Phaedra M. Weldon's "The Rose, the Farmboy, and the Gnome", in which a fairy Godfather make a you Need a fun read? Try “Fantasy Gone Wrong", edited by Martin H. Greenberg. Greenberg, along with Ellen Datlow, is one of the premiere curators of SF and fantasy fiction, and he's just as good with this collection. This time around, he focuses on magic that doesn't quite work the way you'd think. Most of the stories are clever rather than funny, but the funny ones have me rolling. Of particular note is Phaedra M. Weldon's "The Rose, the Farmboy, and the Gnome", in which a fairy Godfather make a young man an off he can't refuse. Highly recommended.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Diane ~Firefly~

    I love the idea of re-working tales. This is a good anthology, with more good stories than mediocre and lots of twisty endings. The Poisoned Chalice by Brian Stableford - **** Cool concept. Love the idea that a minor character trait (resistance to peeking) leads to an all important mission. I did feel sorry for poor Umsonofer though for what he had to go through to accomplish his mission. Battle of Wits by Mickey Zucker Reichert - **** I love how the unicorn outsmarted her author. The Hero of Killorg I love the idea of re-working tales. This is a good anthology, with more good stories than mediocre and lots of twisty endings. The Poisoned Chalice by Brian Stableford - **** Cool concept. Love the idea that a minor character trait (resistance to peeking) leads to an all important mission. I did feel sorry for poor Umsonofer though for what he had to go through to accomplish his mission. Battle of Wits by Mickey Zucker Reichert - **** I love how the unicorn outsmarted her author. The Hero of Killorglin by Fiona Patton - *** Was a bit confusing at first figuring out the characters. Nice tale of a heroic dog and an annoying cat. Goblin Lullaby by Jim C. Hines - *** Interesting tale about how Jig survived infant-hood due to a bet. Crumbs by Esther M. Friesner - *** New take on Hansel & Gretel. The poor witch was only trying to make some money. Nice ending. Fellow Traveler by Donald J. Bingle - ** A minor magician travels with barbarians to stay safe by convincing them he is much more powerful and his lies come back to haunt him. Food Fight by Alan Dean Foster - *** A man hears food talking to him and goes to a psychologist. Has an interesting twist. Moonlighting by Devon Monk - ** A pixie gets upset that the house is too clean and he doesn't have enough to do, so he ends up getting seen by the child and given Barbie clothes and has to find a new position. The Rose, the Farmboy and the Gnome by Phaedra M. Weldon - *** After Jed steals a magicial gnome, he is forced to use it for a wish to save his own hide. It doesn't work out exactly as planned. A Day at the Unicorn Races by Christina F. York - ** Bubbles, a unicorn jockey is having feeling for Al, but doesn't want to give up racing. Dragonslayer: Being the True and Terrible Tale of a Fearsome Meeting Between a Man and a Monster by Jana Panniccia - ** Hamster makes a living by showing people the cave of a dead dragon, but this newest tour group is going to cause some trouble. The Murder of Mr. Wolf by Josepha Sherman - *** Investigating the murder of Mr. Wolf leads Beau Peep and Marie Gobeur in search of many fairy tale residents with motive. A nice twist at the end. New Yorke Snow by Suzanne Sizemore - *** Nice twist on Snow White. Love the unicorn. Meet the Madfeet by Michael Jasper - *** Started slow but the end was worth it. A wizard is sent to help the Madfeet defeat a dragon. Finder's Keepers by Jenny Wurts - *** Taffire, a runt wyvern goes on an adventure to hell when he pisses off an imp who is trying to steal his master's spell book. Is This Real Enough by Lisanne Norman - *** A lot of characters and a bit confusing, but a fun idea using MMO players.

  5. 4 out of 5

    M—

    A real mixed-bag anthology. Many of the stories bored me, there were a few I really liked, and very little wavering in between. Poisoned Chalice – Elf drops doomsday weapon off the edge of the world, but you didn’t think it would be as easy as all that, right? The spiders were pretty awesome. The names were pretty silly. Battle of Wits – Author and unicorn...ish…thing vie for control of plot. Cute. Hero of Killorglin – If the aging loyal hound of a warrior is going to go down, he’s going to go down A real mixed-bag anthology. Many of the stories bored me, there were a few I really liked, and very little wavering in between. Poisoned Chalice – Elf drops doomsday weapon off the edge of the world, but you didn’t think it would be as easy as all that, right? The spiders were pretty awesome. The names were pretty silly. Battle of Wits – Author and unicorn...ish…thing vie for control of plot. Cute. Hero of Killorglin – If the aging loyal hound of a warrior is going to go down, he’s going to go down with style. I actually could have done without the cat. Goblin Lullaby – Frickin’ adorable down to the last pissing, wailing goblin infant. Single best story of the bunch. And this kicked off Hines’ Goblin series? Right, those are now must reads. Crumbs – Knight opts for change of career from quests to dark forest casino bouncer, and there’s just one pesky king to get out the way. Fellow Traveler – Medieval on man falls in with barbarians, falls to think his last con entirely the whole way through. It was all right, but the last sentence was really good. Note to self: feining death atop an open, wooden tower when the enemy has archers, lots and lots of archers (many of them shooting flaming arrows), not really a good idea. [p. 111] Food Fight – Food talks to man. Man goes to psychiatrist. Psychiatrist really doesn’t see a problem with this. Meh. Moonlighting – Something about a pixie that cleans, and whines about it. The Rose, the Farmboy, and the Gnome – Dragonfighting involved. Meh. A Day at the Unicorn Races – Unicorns are raced by virgins, which is sad for unicorn trainers who do not have such a job requirement. Woe. Dragonslayer – DNF. Murder of Mr. Wolf – The Red Riding Hood fable seems to lend itself particularly well to crime noir. New Yorke Snow – Unicorn selects local prostitute as the pure-of-heart bride for the king. Nicely done. Meet the Madfeet – DNF. Finder’s Keeper – Something about elves. DNF. Is this Real Enough – Something about computer gaming. DNF. Two or three stars.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    This anthology was a mixture of major disappointments and a few pleasant surprises. As the book description says, the point of this collection was for the authors to write an unique fantasy story that's off the beaten path (think movies like Shrek or Happily N'Ever After). The authors could have done anything they wanted, they could rewrite any fairy tale in any way, they could have taken any fantasy setting and turned it upside down. But few of them did, they wrote completely boring and unorigi This anthology was a mixture of major disappointments and a few pleasant surprises. As the book description says, the point of this collection was for the authors to write an unique fantasy story that's off the beaten path (think movies like Shrek or Happily N'Ever After). The authors could have done anything they wanted, they could rewrite any fairy tale in any way, they could have taken any fantasy setting and turned it upside down. But few of them did, they wrote completely boring and unoriginal stories. It's a shame since the idea of this book is fantastic, and with some truly talented authors it could have been an amazing collection. But it's not. However, it wasn't all bad. Yes, most of the stories in the first half of the book were blah, but further into it you do have some wonderful tales that I absolutely loved. Those few good stories were the only reason this book didn't get 1 star.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Doris

    This book wavers between "I liked it" and "it was disappointing". There were a couple of very good stories, but 2 out of 16 doesn't make it for me. I felt that the stories overall were lame and of the quality of a first attempt in a high school literature / creative writing class. However, the story "Crumbs" was excellent, as was "Moonlighting". I was in eye-rolling mode on the final story, and also on the pegacorn story. Overall - good to fill in while waiting on traffic or at lunch, but not som This book wavers between "I liked it" and "it was disappointing". There were a couple of very good stories, but 2 out of 16 doesn't make it for me. I felt that the stories overall were lame and of the quality of a first attempt in a high school literature / creative writing class. However, the story "Crumbs" was excellent, as was "Moonlighting". I was in eye-rolling mode on the final story, and also on the pegacorn story. Overall - good to fill in while waiting on traffic or at lunch, but not something I will ever read again.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marsha

    When different authors decide to take conventional fairy tales and turn them on their heads, anything can happen. From reluctant heroes to friendly dragons to ornery unicorns, these stories are in turn amusing, thought provoking and surprising. Nothing goes as it should and endings may be happy but not always what is requested. In nutty tales like this, you learn to roll with the punches and take your happiness where you can.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alison

    Love this. I love authors taking tropes and subverting them. As with all short story collections, it was a bit uneven, but I was sad when I realized I was on the last one. It had such a different tang than most other fantasy, which either takes itself too seriously or winks at its own silliness a little too much.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Michele

    I'm not usually a short story reader, but this was an enjoyable collection of quirky tales. My favorite was "Goblin Lullaby", if only because Jim C. Hines always seems to craft a tight tale. I rather enjoyed "The Murder of Mr. Wolf" as well, as I have a soft spot for nursery rhyme noir (for more, read Jasper Fforde's "Jack Spratt Investigates" series).

  11. 4 out of 5

    Bryan

    I bought this in ebook format at fictionwise.com, but the publisher decided they wanted more money, so I couldn't download it. Fictionwise refunded my money after a few weeks, so now I have to decide if I'll ever buy this again. Unlikely.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    I liked one of the stories and that is all. It sounded like a clever idea but when you read a book mconsisting of short stories you never know what you may get. Most of the stories used foul langauge and themes inappropriate for kids. Overall this book did not please me.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    Hit and miss, as happens in most anthologies. There were some stories I liked quite a lot, and others that I skimmed (or skipped). Most of the stories were short enough to get through in about five minutes--perfect!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Teresa Carrigan

    Some of the stories are very good, most are ok, a few I didn't even bother finishing.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    A good collection of humorous short stories with a fantasy theme...

  16. 5 out of 5

    Nephlm

    It was overall a bit uneven, particularly toward the beginning, but it evened out and on the whole was an enjoyable read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kerry

    A good collection of short stories with twist on the typical. Good easy summer reading.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Hollo

    slow, not as good as the other story collections by this publisher. Only really 1 good story, of characters writing the author

  19. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    Like most books filled with short stories I encounter, some tales are enjoyable and some are not short enough. I found this book had more that I enjoyed than rushed through.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Norman Howe

    A variety of offbeat fantasy stories"," some of them very funny.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Cindy

    Multiple author anthology of 16 stories where magic/fantasy doesn't follow the 'rules' we all expect... Most of the stories were fun and likable and some were excellent.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Carole B

    A nice, diverting little collection of short storie.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    A wide collection of fantasy tales to make you laugh and think.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ch J Loveall

    author quest continues - found some

  25. 4 out of 5

    Hectaizani

    As is usual for a book of short stories, some were better than others.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kris

    Kind of a mixed bag of stories, but overall not bad.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lynx

    This book is sooooo funny! A must read for any fan of fantasy.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    The stories were okay, and often cute. I enjoyed the book, but probably won't reread.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Brett

    Anthology,Fantasy

  30. 4 out of 5

    Schnaucl

    I really liked this anthology. There were several highly amusing stories.

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