Some Saturday-morning reviews for you, from Vector 245.
Neil Barron’s Anatomy of Wonder, reviewed by Steve Jeffrey:
This is the fifth, and judging by Barron’s valedictory Preface, possibly the final edition of Anatomy of Wonder. It has been substantially updated, revised and enlarged from its 1995 predecessor and now weighs in at over twice the length of its original incarnation in 1976. The first and third editions of this Guide were previously reviewed in Vector by Brian Stableford (Nov 1976), and Paul Kincaid (April 1988) who are both contributors to this volume, alongside an impressive list of critics, reviewers, academics and commentators.
J. Shaun Lyon’s Back to the Vortex, reviewed by Martin McGrath:
Back to the Vortex is a perfect example of a book designed to serve a market that cares how many times someone says the word “fantastic” in the new series of Doctor Who or the number of people who die in each episode. As such, the author, J. Shaun Lyon, should be congratulated. I can’t imagine a more comprehensive volume. But it is not without flaws.
And Holly Phillips’ In the Palace of Repose, reviewed by me:
It is perhaps only in the sf field that a debut short story collection consisting mostly of original stories might be greeted with suspicion. Where, we wonder (I wonder, before I catch myself doing it) are the publication credits? Why were these stories not published in the magazines? What’s wrong with them? And yet to think along such lines is, increasingly, to miss out: here is a debut collection where the majority of the stories are making their first appearance, but which without a doubt marks the arrival of an interesting new voice.
We plan to put a few reviews online from each issue, so watch this space for more.