Halfway through the Cherryh story. I like it well enough, but it isn't spectacular. That's unfortunate, because Cherryh is a great author to read. I love her Chanur books, and I have Cyteen on my to-read list right now.
I got about halfway through the Cherryh one and skipped it. I may come back to it later, but so far I hadn't had any problems getting through the stories. I'm reading K.J. Parker's story now and I'm pretty sure I read it before. I'm liking that one a lot more so far.
OK, I've definitely read the K.J. Parker story before. I remember the man with skin purple like a grape. Parker's style is very engaging without being predictable. I almost finished the story in one sitting for a second time, which isn't something I do often.
I've read the first three short stories and loved each one.
Erikson: You have to admire Erikson's commitment in avoiding infodumps. Even in his short story you are dropped in the middle of the action.
Cook: I didn't remember his Black Company stories to contain such colorful language. Besides that, a classic Croaker story.
Wolfe: I was most pleased by this story. I've recently exposed myself to his writing (I bought Shadow & Claw a couple weeks ago), and was surprised by the competence of this short story. He uses the fundementals of a chess game to fabricate an epic world that would give Homer pause. Oddly, he kept the details of the world abstract. We are given the scope of what can be, but not enough to know the exact details.
Late to the party, what with editing (sigh) and the book not arriving until a few days ago.
Erikson and Cook: What interests me here is that both authors successfully incorporated large numbers of characters in the short story format.
Erikson had like ten - the five mercenaries, each distinct, the four townspeople, also distinct, and the imp.
Likewise, Cook. A good half dozen members of the Black Company played some sort of onstage role at one point or another, plus the Limper, plus the lovely lady of the moment. And the OTHER Lady was also present despite being absent. The banter didn't bother me. Ladies, take note: yes, at least some guys do talk that way.
The Cherryh story I struggled with, but I will not it also involved several characters.
Wolfe's tale impressed me. I've read some of his stuff before, but not the main corpus (Torturer/Long Sun series). Might have to try tackling that sometime...like the darkest depths of winter.
I've also read most of the other stories.
But again, what impressed me was the number of distinct characters some of these authors managed to pack into tales of less than 5000 words (at least I think they're less than 5000 words). Couldn't help but make comparisons with my own writing: 'Waiting for Godek' seems to work well enough, despite having eight or nine distinct named characters in 7000+ words. My last 'Iron Pen' entry, Zu, seemed a bit cluttered character-wise (and infodumpy, have to fix that), despite having fewer characters than either Erikson or Cook. The difference between novices and masters, maybe.
I liked the Cherryh story. It really clicked with me. She’s also the first of the authors I’ve actually read. Or tried to read - there was a copy of Fortress in the Eye of Time at my middle school library, but, like, Â¼ of the way through, I found pages missing. Librarian didn’t get to replacing it while I was there, and I never got around to picking it up again. But now I might.
I really liked the Parker story. It kept me interested, and I read it and the prior one in one sitting.
And Nix’s story… I struggled a bit with. It didn’t keep my interest as well. Found myself having to reread bits.
I finished Silverburg's story (which I liked simply because it just feels different than a lot of the others) and am now on the beginning of Keyes's story. I want to go back and read Red Pearls at some point because I liked the beginning of it. It's just really long and I haven't had time to get into something longer.
Overall, there haven't been any stories that I outright didn't like, but as far as the ones I've really enjoyed, I'd say Erikson, Parker, and Lebbon's stood out to me the most.
I'm not sure many of them really fit what I'd consider to be classic sword and sorcery, but I guess the attempt was to do more modern versions of the genre.
I've still got to finish up. I liked the Tanith Lee story. KJ Parker is always good, and I enjoyed his/her story. I have not yet read Lebbon's story, but I've read Lebbon before and he's a good writer.
Haven't gotten to Tanith Lee's yet (I don't think?) Lebbon's story is pretty dark, but I expect that from him.
I'm not going to finish this anthology before July, but that's cool. I finished most of the stories here and found some authors I'd like to check out more of. I'm definitely going to go back and read Red Pearls. I feel like Moorcock can be a new favorite of mine (although he's been around for a long time.)
I got bogged down with real life, so I've only read a couple more stories. :/
The Sea Troll's Daughter was definitely my favourite of the ones I read, which isn't surprising since I love Kiernan and I also love Beowulf, which this whole story is fairly obviously referencing. Also, I like female leads in genres all but defined as 'manly'.
Garth Nix's story wasn't his best short, but it had his usual charm and was enjoyable enough.
In the Stacks definitely had one of the most amusing premises, and I admit a weakness for anything that even mentions a magical school. (It's the Harry Potter generation's burden, I'm afraid.) Scott Lynch's style suited it well, too. Only real criticism is that this seemed the least swords and sorcery-esque of the ones I read.