Monday, September 23, 2013

Four Summoner’s Tales-Kelly Armstrong, Christopher Golden, David Liss, and Jonathan Maberry

Four Summoner’s Tales

Kelly Armstrong, Christopher Golden, David Liss, and Jonathan Maberry

Gallery, Sep 17 2013, $16.00

ISBN 9781451696684

“Suffer The Children” by Kelly Armstrong. A few centuries ago, a diphtheria epidemic wiped out over thirty percent of the isolated population of Chestnut Hill, Canada with many of the victims children. Two strangers offer the grieving townsfolk a chance to bring back those who died within the last 96 hours but the preacher and tweener orphan Addie warn the others but they prove too late when remittance of the usury price occurs.

“Pipers” by Christopher Golden. The Matamoros Cartel terrorizes the border town of Lansdale, Texas with almost two dozen murders as retaliation for the interference into their trafficking by the Texas Volunteer Border patrol. Angry resident Vickers tells those who lost someone to the brutal cartel that the time for revenge is now. He wants to raise an army of their undead loved ones.

“A Bad Season For Necromancy” by David Liss. In eighteenth century England, the con artist uses the book for raising the dead to blackmail wealthy widows who do not want the return of am angry husband.

“Alive Day” by Jonathan Maberry. In Afghanistan, Captain Joe Ledger and his Echo Team back-up Rattlesnake Team on a counterdrug mission against the Taliban, but instead the Americans confront something deadlier that later none of the survivors can provide a rationale explanation for.

These four diverse fantasies share the premise of “A strange visitor comes to town, offering to raise the townsfolk’s dearly departed from the dead—for a price.” Each is chillingly well written, but the standout is David Liss’ clever historical.

Harriet Klausner

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