Normally I wouldn’t review a book I haven’t yet read but I was so taken with the introduction that I wanted to bring it to your attention before another two months have gone by. Consider this a review of the introduction, which, in all honesty, deserves a wide readership.
Basically, it boils down to her loving fantasy and sf but getting frustrated at not finding herself in the stories. Things have changed to some degree—especially in the fantasy/sf field—but there was certainly a time when you couldn’t find a female protagonist. They were always on the sidelines. The mother, daughter, girlfriend, wife. Occasionally, the femme fatale with whom the hero had to match wits (a contest that he inevitably won).
What you really need to do is read Elliott’s introductory essay, which is full of deeper insights that take in not only the world of the written word, but also the one in which we all live. I loved the way she explained her journey through family history, the landscapes in which those journeys took place, and how she finally came to understand the only way that her stories could be authentic.
Now I need to go read some of those stories. Luckily, I have a whole book of them on hand.
Read the rest of de Lint’s review at THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION.
For more on THE VERY BEST OF KATE ELLIOTT, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover art by Julie Dillon.
Design by Elizabeth Story.