Queen Victoria's Book of Spells: An Anthology of Gaslamp Fantasy
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"Gaslamp Fantasy," or historical fantasy set in a magical version of the nineteenth century, has long been popular with readers and writers alike. A number of wonderful fantasy novels, including Stardust by Neil Gaiman, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke, and The Prestige by Christopher Priest, owe their inspiration to works by nineteenth-century writers ranging from Jane Austen, the Brontës, and George Meredith to Charles Dickens, Anthony Trollope, and William Morris. And, of course, the entire steampunk genre and subculture owes more than a little to literature inspired by this period.
Queen Victoria's Book of Spells is an anthology for everyone who loves these works of neo-Victorian fiction, and wishes to explore the wide variety of ways that modern fantasists are using nineteenth-century settings, characters, and themes. These approaches stretch from steampunk fiction to the Austen-and-Trollope inspired works that some critics call Fantasy of Manners, all of which fit under the larger umbrella of Gaslamp Fantasy. The result is eighteen stories by experts from the fantasy, horror, mainstream, and young adult fields, including both bestselling writers and exciting new talents such as Elizabeth Bear, James Blaylock, Jeffrey Ford, Ellen Kushner, Tanith Lee, Gregory Maguire, Delia Sherman, and Catherynne M. Valente, who present a bewitching vision of a nineteenth century invested (or cursed!) with magic.
A Kirkus Reviews Best Fiction Book of 2013
Cratchit, I am Miggs Oystery, until recently, as which I mean to say until this very morning, an employee in the domestic situation of”—she paused with the timing of a seasoned performer on the sawdusty boards of the London Music Hall—“of the late Ebenezer Scrooge.” She primped to affect an impression of grand desolation. Bob Cratchit snatched at his throat and his ruddy face paled. “May the good Lord have mercy on his soul,” he cried, and would have said more, much more, but catching sight of
mind is that of a scholar and intellectual, who was not adverse to the athletic pursuits and endurance, for which your limbs, and all parts, were so carefully selected.” At first, too, occasionally, Ferstone had physically guided his companion, even, once or twice, placed his legs, hands or feet, straightened him up as if dealing with a hinged model. By what had been designated the dining hour (when a roast was taken from the clockwork stove and served with roasted tubers and a thick mahogany
Fairy Tale Book, Michael Patrick Hearn Breaking the Angelic Image, Edith Lazaros Honig Don’t Tell the Grown-Ups, Alison Lurie Victorian Fantasy, Stephen Prickett Strange and Secret Peoples, Carole G. Silver Victorian Fairy Tales, Jack Zipes ALSO EDITED BY ELLEN DATLOW AND TERRI WINDLING Adult Retold Fairy Tale Series Snow White, Blood Red Black Thorn, White Rose Ruby Slippers, Golden Tears Black Swan, White Raven Silver Birch, Blood Moon Black Heart, Ivory Bones The Green Man: Tales
called down to the passersby. “We are here. Don’t you know we are here? We are alive?” She made us laugh. We squinted through our windows. “Perhaps we are better off in here after all,” Sheila said as we saw pickpockets, sly kisses, and pinches, faces full of anger and some full of idiocy. “And perhaps the world would be better off without many of them,” Annie said. “Wasteful, I sometimes think.” Annie had us sit there with our lunch; she was full of ideas. Cook stomped up the stairs with our
crossed knees, giggling as the room grew darker and darker still, until I could not see to see. The tapping got louder, and this time there was no playacting. This time there were no tricks, were there, Katie? How used to them I had become by then, all the posing and the playacting, all the tricks! I could summon up the taps myself, Katie—sometimes anyway. I won’t deny that, no matter how much it would please you. I had a touch of the gift myself. But you— I remember. I remember it all so