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The Essential Bordertown Paperback – Jul 8 1999


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; First Edition edition (July 8 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312867034
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312867034
  • Product Dimensions: 22 x 14 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #484,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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The first thing you gotta know is, this not your regular guidebook, savvy? Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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By A Customer on Sept. 8 2003
Format: Paperback
"Shared universe" collections are usually haphazard at best, but the essential Borderlands is brilliant all the way through. Some touching, some funny, all imaginatve, wild, and evocative of a place we all wish to be lost in. Elves, drugs, and rock and roll, with a very literate twist. No need to have read prior books, this one will sweep you up and carry you away. The only short story collection in my "best books" list.
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By A Customer on Aug. 11 2003
Format: Paperback
Not into sword and sorcery but secretly adore magic and faeries? Then this is the one for you. I have never seen a stronger "shared world" anthology, each story will stay with you long after you have finished reading, each for a different reason. A gourmet selection of short stories.
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Format: Paperback
Most of the short stories in this collection have been written for teens, and older readers might find many of the stories a little trying.
Bordertown is a shared universe created for those people young enough or naive enough to imagine that being a homeless, unwashed, aspiring Artist automatically makes someone interesting. Nearly everyone in Bordertown, it seems, is a runaway, a musician, a member of the SCA, an elf, or [dear me] all of the above. Still, the stories are fun, and most of them are readable. "Argentine", by Ellen Steiber, I thought the best of the bunch: a wonderful love and redemption story set in Bordertown's El Barrio. Other notables include: "How Shannaro Tolkinson Lost and Found His Heart" by Felicity Savage, an amusing story that makes it known that B-Town and Faerie may not really be all they're cracked up to be; "When the Bow Breaks" by Steven Brust, which takes place not in Bordertown at all, but on the Mad River; and "Rag" by Caroline Stevermer, whose writing style quite reminded me of Tim Powers. If you can't stomach any of the other stories, at least give those four a try.
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Format: Paperback
Going by other reader reviews of this book, some fans of the series were disappointed by The Essential Bordertown--they felt the stories "just weren't the same" or something. Of course they weren't the same! It has a different character than other books in the series, but that's only to be expected from an anthology, and I enjoyed it immensely. One of its best features, to my mind, is the way "guidebook" excerpts are placed between the stories--for those unfamiliar with Bordertown, they provide excellent background material, and for fans, they're full of little jokes and references to familiar locations/people/events. They also make good transitions from one story to the next. The book contains 13 stories (how apropos) by Patricia A. McKillip, Midori Snyder, Delia Sherman, Donnard Sturgis, Ellen Kushner, Michael Korolenko, Elisabeth Kushner, Charles de Lint, Caroline Stevermer, Steven Brust, Ellen Steiber, Micole Sudberg, and Felicity Savage, of which four particularly struck me.
I loved Patricia A. McKillip's "Oak Hill" for many reasons, but one of them is that its protagonist reminded me of myself in junior high--a lonely girl with bad skin looking for magick. I particularly liked the fact that the girl has no terrible reason to come to Bordertown; she just wants something better--something more--than what she has. McKillip's prose is beautiful as ever, and the ending, though of course I won't give it away, is simple and powerful. "Dragon Child" by Midori Snyder is largely set in Dragontown, which has always been one of my favorite areas of Bordertown.
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Format: Paperback
Going by other reader reviews of this book, some fans of the series were disappointed by The Essential Bordertown--they felt the stories "just weren't the same" or something. Of course they weren't the same! It has a different character than other books in the series, but that's only to be expected from an anthology, and I enjoyed it immensely. One of its best features, to my mind, is the way "guidebook" excerpts are placed between the stories--for those unfamiliar with Bordertown, they provide excellent background material, and for fans, they're full of little jokes and references to familiar locations/people/events. They also make good transitions from one story to the next. The book contains 13 stories (how apropos) by Patricia A. McKillip, Midori Snyder, Delia Sherman, Donnard Sturgis, Ellen Kushner, Michael Korolenko, Elisabeth Kushner, Charles de Lint, Caroline Stevermer, Steven Brust, Ellen Steiber, Micole Sudberg, and Felicity Savage, of which four particularly struck me.
I loved Patricia A. McKillip's "Oak Hill" for many reasons, but one of them is that its protagonist reminded me of myself in junior high--a lonely girl with bad skin looking for magick. I particularly liked the fact that the girl has no terrible reason to come to Bordertown; she just wants something better--something more--than what she has. McKillip's prose is beautiful as ever, and the ending, though of course I won't give it away, is simple and powerful. "Dragon Child" by Midori Snyder is largely set in Dragontown, which has always been one of my favorite areas of Bordertown.
Read more ›
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