Tag Archives: rogues

Stories in Rogues – “The Meaning of Love” by Daniel Abraham

The Meaning of Love is a sappy title, and one you have to immediately presume is sarcastic in an anthology like this one. I won’t spoil how this presumption plays out though, you may have to find out for yourself, because I do recommend reading this little story about a sprawling town run only by its lawlessness and brutality, a pathetic little prince and his gilded sword, and the badass-bitch rogue wearing pink goggles set on helping him out.

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Stories in Rogues – “Heavy Metal” by Cherie Priest

An unusually large protagonist, a small town, and bizarre reports of recent deaths. I wasn’t sure what to expect, what setting it would be, or if I was about to read a mystery, action, thriller, or what. Turns out it’s a modern fantasy about a monster hunter. Cool! Let’s find out if it was any good.  Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “Bad Brass” by Bradley Denton

I think I’m starting to find that I enjoy stories set in the modern world more than I thought. I guess maybe I just haven’t read that much in that setting–that setting, or, our setting? Hmm. I don’t know. Either way, I’m off topic. Would you believe me if I said that Denton is able to make a story about a back-woods High School substitute teacher, some band geeks, their instruments, and an estranged Mexican banda player immersive and engrossing? Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “A Year and a Day in Old Theradane” by Scott Lynch

High fantasy, feuding wizards, and the classic why-did-I-drink-so-much plot device, and you’ve got the recipe for “A Year and a Day.” I don’t read a ton of high fantasy, so I was interested to see how this would go.  Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “The Roaring Twenties” by Carrie Vaughn

The roaring twenties setting, a speakeasy, some magic, two brooding female leads, werewolves, and Federal officers. Hmm. Okay, let’s go. But then the narrator started talking and–*shudders*–yeah, it’s not good. Soft spoken, weird accent, and not enough character in the voices makes this story a tough “read.” But I finished it and was pretty disappointed.

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Stories in Rogues – “Provenance” by David W. Ball

I enjoyed David W. Ball’s introduction more than I did this story. I got the impression that this story was going to be rich with details, maybe in a historical-narrative style, and thoroughly researched. Indeed, this tale about an old art dealer is exactly all of those things.  Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “Tawny Petticoats” by Michael Swanwick

Lots and lots of zombies, really? I remember wondering if this was going to be a gory zombie tale, something more dramatic, like The Walking Dead, or something else entirely etc … turns out it’s an elaborate con-job set in an absurdly surreal dystopic future New Orleans. Very shortly into this one, I had to get over the fact that the leads partner is a anthropomorphic dog. A dogman, if you will.  Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “Bent Twig” by Joe R. Lansdale

If I haven’t mentioned this yet, I’m listening to the audio book Rogues. There is a different reader for each story, and if you don’t have much experience with audio books, let me tell you this: the reader can break the book, or elevate it to heights even beyond your own imagination. It’s a really incredible way to consume books (I still thoroughly enjoy holding a physical book though, don’t get me wrong). So after the impressive titles for Lansdale, and the brief description of the story to come, I was excited to read about this rescue tale set in modern-day Texas.  Read the rest of this post …

Stories in Rogues – “The Inn of the Seven Blessings” by Matt Hughes

I’d not heard of Matt Hughes before, but his list of accolades and titles was supremely impressive. So, I dove into this tale rather excited.

This medieval fantasy story starts with a thief recovering an interesting object. This object leads him on a quick quest, naturally, and there is a weird little payoff at the end, but overall, I strongly disliked this story. There wasn’t a great sense of voice, and the word choices just felt off. It read very stiff and I found myself tuning out through most of it.

I finished it, of course–because I want to finish them all–but the payoff at the end felt cheap and not worth it. Granted, I didn’t see it coming … but that’s because … well, I’ll just let you find out (if you can make it there).

I think you’re fine to skip this one. Sorry, Hughes!

Stories in Rogues – “What Do You Do?” by Gillian Flynn

Each story in Rogues is prefaced by an exhaustive detailing of the authors’ body of work and accolades, and given that George R. R. Martin is one of the editors, I guess this makes perfect sense–because it kind of reads like each author is a character in Westeros, being introduced by Martin’s exhaustive historical-narrative style, and they each get a list of impressive-sounding titles.

So, anyway, when “What Do You Do?” was introduced as a piece by Gillian Flynn, the writer of “Gone Girl”, I immediately got excited. I didn’t read Gone Girl (I know, I know …) but I did watch and thoroughly enjoyed the movie (come on, you know you liked it too). One thing I was looking forward to in Rogues was being exposed to new writers, new experiences, ideas, and different genres. And Flynn did not disappoint! Read the rest of this post …