Reviews of “Hesperia and Glory”
Scalzi features several very new writers, who acquit themselves admirably, particularly Ann Leckie, whose “Hesperia and Glory” inverts the John Carter template by having a Prince of Mars mysteriously transported to Earth.
There is not now, nor has there ever been, a well in the cellar. Sure, the police say that they were unable to retrieve the body of John Atkins—an odd visitor with an odder story—from the well in the basement, but it’s very important to remember that the well does not exist. Ann Leckie’s “Hesperia and Glory” is a tale of consensual reality and a lost prince from a Victorian Mars calls to mind the best works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Robert E. Howard, H. P. Lovecraft, and Michael Moorcock. If you’re in need of a pulp sci-fi fix, I can’t recommend this story enough.
Publishers Weekly review of Science Fiction: The Best of the Year, 2007 Edition:
Returning for his second stint editing Prime’s annual SF compilation, Horton is faced with a daunting task, at which he doesn’t entirely succeed. Out of a dozen stories, the few inspired selections include Robert Reed’s gritty “A Billion Eves,” where exploring an infinite number of parallel universes is a godsend for some polygamous pilgrims but a decidedly dire prospect for others; Carolyn Ives Gilman’s “Okanoggan Falls,” in which a rural Wisconsin hamlet must fend off alien invaders, who have scheduled it for demolition; and Ann Leckie’s “Hesperia and Glory,” a witty homage of sorts to Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Reviews of “The Unknown God”
I also liked Ann Leckie’s “The Unknown God,” in which the god Aworo, in human form, returns to the city where he tragically misused his power, condemning a woman he loved to–he thought–death. He learns she still lives, but in constrained circumstances due to his curse. And naturally she (and her own god) are not too happy with him. Leckie is, as ever, inventive and logical and grounded about the power and responsibility of godhood. –Rich Horton