The Homeless Moon: Imaginary Places (2009)
Written by: Jason S. Ridler, Michael J. DeLuca, Erin Hoffman, Scott H. Andrews, Justin Howe
Genre: Short Stories
Pages: 79 (Chapbook)
The premise: this year, Homeless Moon's chapbook has a theme (yay!) of lands from Manguel and Guadalupi's The Dictionary of Imaginary Places (huh?), which sent me marching to Wikipedia to learn what I could about this volume, and then it sent me marching back to the chapbook to see specifically had been used and when it first appeared. Fortunately, all the imaginary places used in this chapbook are obscure to me, so I was mostly happy. Plus, I got my theme, something that unifies the chapbook while also allowing each author to be true to him(and her!)self.
No Rating: as with the first chapbook, this was free for me, and it's free for you too, because you can download it from the website as a PDF. Just go here to download not just this second chapbook, but the first too! As a whole, I was really thrilled with the fact this particular chapbook is united with a theme, all be it one I wouldn't have remotely considered if I were brainstorming with them. I wonder, because of the homages paid in each story, if any of the writers could get these stories published elsewhere if they hadn't published them here in this chapbook, but that's neither here nor there. This chapbook really charmed me with Scott H. Andrews's fantasy, as well as Justin Howe's short but amusingly dark tale. On a technical note, I was glad to see fewer typos and formatting errors in this edition, though I would like to see--should the Homeless Moon folks do another chapbook--the headers use not just the author's name, but the title of the short story as well instead of "The Homeless Moon". It really confused me in the first chapbook, but simply annoyed me here, as I would've liked to look up and see the title of the story at any given moment. But maybe I'm just too demanding. However, if I'm being demanding, I'd like to see a different theme for the next chapbook. Selecting imaginary places from Manguel and Guadalupi's The Dictionary of Imaginary Places is all well and good, but I'd like to see a theme where the writers don't have to walk the fine line between homage and, well, the dark side. Not that any of the stories strayed to the dark side, but sometimes, it was a close shave.
Still, a great little read that is easy to get through and won't demand too much of your time or any of your money, as you can read it for free here. What have you got to lose? It's worth your time, trust me, especially if you enjoy short fiction.
Review style: I will review each story individually, though I reserve the right to use the term "review" loosely. Will there be spoilers? I'll speak in generalities the best I can, focus more on the technique and the ideas driving the story rather than any specifics.
So if you want to see a story-by-story review, NO SPOILERS, then just hop over to my LJ. As always, comments and discussion are welcome.
REVIEW: The Homeless Moon: Imaginary Places (chapbook)