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The Torn-Down House Tour

PW reviews Year's Best Fantasy 8

Publisher's Weekly has run a featured favorable review of our Year's Best Fantasy 8, published along with a review of the new Dozois Year's Best under the headline Two“Year's Best”anthologies approach the superlative.

There is, however, an error in the review that I think I ought to say something about. The PW reviewer didn't like the Michael Moorcock and Elizabeth Hand stories. Fair enough. Reviewers are of course entitled to their opinions. But expressed in this way, one has the impression of what may be a cut-and-paste slip-up:

The standout selections, such as Darryl Gregory's “Unpossible,” a lost boy's poignant return to a fantasy world, and Laird Barron's “The Forest,” an exquisitely sinister exploration of a Lovecraftian landscape, are far better than those by bigger names, such as Michael Moorcock's bitter, solipsistic “A Portrait in Ivory” or Elizabeth Hand's paint-by-numbers sword and sorcery story “Winter's Wife.”
Elizabeth HandUm. How is the Liz Hand story "sword and sorcery" except inasmuch as it is fantasy? While I think it is hands-down the best story in the Dozois/Dann anthology Wizards, and while other stories from Wizards have swords and sorcerers and are set in bronze-age or medieval settings and have magical battles and supernatural foes and such, these would not be the Hand story in which the magical aspects are quite understated and the setting is present-day Maine.

Perhaps the reviewer tangled up the critical remarks about the Moorcock, since that at least is an Elric story set in the S&S milieu? Or perhaps another was intended to be the reviewer's target? Looks like a mistake to me.

Though PW reviews are anonymous, I think this particular reviewer owes Liz Hand an apology.