Tachyon tidbits featuring Jane Yolen

The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles and authors from around the web.


Photo: Jason Stemple


Almost as old as fairy tales, or so it seems, is the practice of retellingfairy tales. This proves to be not as repetitive as one might think. As Marissa Meyer states in the introduction to Jane Yolen’s magical collection HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE, fairy tales have lots of angles from which to view them. Yolen’s collection is proof of that sentiment. It contains twenty-eight alternate versions of fairy tales that differ slightly from the originals, thus providing a remarkably different kind of story.


Each of the stories in this collection are light and fun making the entire collection a breezy read with genuine smile-inducing moments.


QUIRKY CAT’S FAT STACKS also liked the collection.


HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE is an absolutely astonishing collection from the mind of Jane Yolen. If you’re a fan of fairy tales, or reading twisted versions of them (not to say that the original versions aren’t exceptionally twisted to begin with…) then this is something you may want to look into. Yolen has mastered the art of looking at a story in a different light, breathing new life into a tale told thousands of times.

But this novel isn’t just a compilation of short stories (though I would have been very happy with that much) but also notes on the stories, and even some poetry. Not every story has an explanation or a poem [an explanation follows every story –TP], but most of them have one or the other. It really adds to the depth of the tales being told. Personally, I loved this touch as I wasn’t always able to identify the fairy tale her works were being based off (more than one of them I was not familiar with in the first place, as it turns out).

The stories and poems here vary from whimsical to disturbingly dark; leaving the reader feeling haunted or chilled. Being that these are fractured fairy tales, most of them have a darker undertone. Sometimes the elements used could be considered disturbing, but they’re all beautifully written despite that.


Daniel Dern for FILE 770 comments about reading Yolen’s World Fantasy Award winning collection THE EMERALD CIRCUS.

I’m about halfway through, it feels wrong to read these hastily.


This is a lovely little fairy tale like magical realism like story.  Richard and Heather are both 12 years old and both of them have seen the white deer.  Richard thinks that it must be a unicorn.  They both want to save it from the hunters.  We get to know Richard, Heather, and the deer individually and together as Richard and Heather develop an unlikely friendship.  I truly enjoyed the story and I think that children and adults alike will enjoy it as well.

Daniel Haeusser at SKIFFY AND FANTY SHOW discusses 2018 Nebula Awards Showcase, edited bv Yolen.

As usual, I’m behind and am just now getting to write up these thoughts on the 2018 Nebula Awards Showcase, edited by Jane Yolen for Pyr. Until April when the 2019 showcase comes out, it is the latest of annual volumes published since 1966 to reprint the nominated and winning stories for the previous year. Though this past year’s winners might be more in the forefront of your mind, revisiting – or discovering – the stories in the 2018 showcase (published 2016 and 2017) could be even more rewarding. I had read many of the stories at their original appearance, and going back to these again for a second or third time felt in some cases like meeting old friends, and in a few cases felt like appreciating something wondrous that I had somehow missed on that read a couple years back.

For more info on HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE, visit the Tachyon page.

For more info on THE EMERALD CIRCUS, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover designs by Elizabeth Story

For more info on THE TRANSFIGURED HART, visit the Tachyon page.

Art by Thomas Canty
Design by Elizabeth Story