Pirates on many and varied high seas…
Mostly when we think of pirates we think of all the classic tropes, shivering timbers, yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum, walking the plank, peg legs and hooks. This anthology has some stories that do indeed tip the wink to those tropes, but always in creative and inventive ways – but it also has some truly astounding short stories which take the simple concept of ‘pirate’ and shoot off in intriguing new directions.
All the stories in this anthology are well worth a read but as in any such collection a few stand out to me though other readers will undoubtedly have their own preferences.
‘Iris, like the song‘ had me grabbed from the title. Time pirates who steal precious and meaningful moments to sell, and someone has stolen 1998 – an entire year. The story has romance and a very cool twist.
‘Xibalba’s curse‘ is as creepy as the title suggests. Actually no, it’s creepier. If you can imagine Lovecraft writing a pirate story this is something like that.
‘De leon’s Fountain‘ feels like a classic pirate story, with a quest for the Fountain of Youth thrown in, but it is anything but and the ending is guaranteed to surprise every reader as much as it did me.
‘Lost Treasure‘ somehow reminded me of the Terry Gilliam film, Time Bandits, maybe through the shimmering bedroom or maybe in how a child is profoundly impacted by a time travelling ne’er do well.
‘To the End of the World‘ is a potent mix of piracy with demonic ritual and has powerful themes of love and friendship.
These are the ones that particularly appealed to me, but there is not a dud in the mix. I recommend you grab a copy right away and embark on your own voyage of discovery.
An anthology of pirate tales, what’s not to be excited about?
This book takes the idea of pirate and twists its neck. We certainly hear the ‘yo ho ho’ of piratical derring do and, live in expectation that our feet may be made to walk the plank – however the seven seas may just as easily be in outer space or even in the vaults of the mind. Fascinating…
So. We have twelve assorted tales, and not a dud among them. Certainly there were those I liked more and those I liked less, but there was nothing I hated or felt didn’t merit its place.
Xibalba’s Curse wherein we get frightened spitless. Loved it.
To the End of the World. ‘Traditional’ piracy mixed with dark magic and leavened by friendship. I didn’t see the end coming.
Iris, like the song takes the idea that you can actually steal time and mixes it with a tender love story. Genius.
I recommend the whole collection. Four shiny stars.