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Tails of Wonder and Imagination Paperback – Feb 1 2010

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 500 pages
  • Publisher: Night Shade Books; Reprint edition (Feb. 1 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1597801704
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597801706
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 839 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #832,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Ellen Datlow has been editing science fiction, fantasy, and horror short fiction for almost thirty years. She was the fiction editor of Omni magazine and Sci Fiction online magazine and has edited more than sixty anthologies. Datlow is the winner of multiple Hugo, Shirley Jackson, and Bram Stoker awards. She lives in New York City.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
"Tails of Wonder and Imagination" is an anthology of previously published fantasy stories featuring various types of felines, ranging from 1977 to 2009, with a brief excerpt from Lewis Carroll’s "Through the Looking Glass" thrown in for good measure. Editor Ellen Datlow is well-known for her many anthologies in the realm of fantasy, dark fantasy and outright horror, and a few of her choices here (such as Edward Bryant’s “Bean Bag Cats” and Kaaron Warren’s “Tiger Kill”) are just too gruesome for me; the majority of stories, however, are quite delightful, touching and/or beautiful. Some of the older stories are by writers such as Stephen King and George R. R. Martin, but there are plenty of 21st Century tales as well, by the likes of Neil Gaiman, Susanna Clarke, Kelly Link and Sharyn McCrumb. As with any anthology of short stories, each individual reader will undoubtedly have his/her favourites; mine include Lucius Shepard’s “The Jaguar Hunter,” Lawrence Block’s “The Burglar Takes a Cat,” Catherynne M. Valente’s “The Manticore’s Tale” (an origin story) and the final story in the book, the novella “The Puma” by Theodora Goss. Not one of these stories is absolutely essential reading (well, except for maybe the Lewis Carroll excerpt), but most all of them are entertaining and well worth checking out. Recommended.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9b49b7b0) out of 5 stars 20 reviews
75 of 80 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc97348) out of 5 stars Stories about cats but not for cat lovers April 26 2011
By Laurie A. Brown - Published on
Format: Paperback
This is a collection fantasy/horror stories that involve cats, some forty `tails', many by well known authors- Neil Gaiman, Joyce Carol Oates, Charles de Lint, Stephen King, Kelly Link, and Susanna Clarke among others. But this is *not* an anthology for cat lovers, or at least not for those with soft hearts. These are dark stories all, not light-hearted fantasies where the noble young cat discovers he's a prince and goes on adventures. In a rather uneven collection, cats meet dire fates at times. They are thrown, throttled, starved, beaten, run over and consumed. Many of these stories I did not enjoy reading. Most are well crafted, though; it's my revulsion at the depiction of violence against felines that gave me such a problem with the stories.

Datlow has expanded the definition of `cat' to include other members of the feline family: lions, tigers and pumas; a couple of mythical ones, the sphinx and the manticore; and some made up for the occasion. To me, these were easier to read-the bigger cats hold their own against humans better.

Decent dark fantasy, but don't give this to someone whose cats are their `children'.
56 of 63 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc9739c) out of 5 stars Table of Contents for anyone wondering just what's in this hefty tome Jan. 19 2010
By Richard Kukan - Published on
Format: Paperback
Table of Contents:

Through the Looking Glass (excerpt) - Lewis Carroll
No Heaven Will Not Ever Heaven Be... - A. R. Morlan
The Price - Neil Gaiman
Dark Eyes, Faith, and Devotion - Charles de Lint
Not Waving - Michael Marshall Smith
Catch - Ray Vukcevich
The Manticore Spell - Jeffrey Ford
Catskin - Kelly Link
Mieze Corrects an Incomplete Representation of Reality - Michaela Roessner
Guardians - George R. R. Martin
Life Regarded as a Jigsaw Puzzle of Highly Lustrous Cats - Michael Bishop
Gordon, the Self-Made Cat - Peter S. Beagle
The Jaguar Hunter - Lucius Shepard
Arthur's Lion - Tanith Lee
Pride - Mary A. Turzillo
The Burglar Takes a Cat - Lawrence Block
The White Cat - Joyce Carol Oates
Returns - Jack Ketchum
Puss-Cat - Reggie Oliver
Cat in Glass - Nancy Etchemendy
Coyote Peyote - Carole Nelson Douglas
The Poet and the Inkmaker's Daughter - Elizabeth Hand
The Night of the Tiger - Stephen King
Every Angel is Terrifying - John Kessel
Candia - Graham Joyce
Mbo - Nicholas Royle
Bean Bag Cats(R) - Edward Bryant
Antiquities - John Crowley
The Manticore's Tale - Catherynne M. Valente
In Carnation - Nancy Springer
Old Foss is the Name of His Cat - David Sandner
A Safe Place to Be - Carol Emshwiller
Nine Lives to Live - Sharyn McCrumb
Tiger Kill - Kaaron Warren
Something Better than Death - Lucy Sussex
Dominion - Christine Lucas
Tiger in the Snow - Daniel Wynn Barber
The Dweller in High Places - Susanna Clarke
Healing - Benjamin Dennis Danvers
The Puma - Theodora Goss
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc977d4) out of 5 stars Cats and more cats Feb. 17 2010
By Janlynn - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A nice thick book for any cat lover to enjoy, also for the reader who can take or leave cats but just enjoys a good mystery or sci-fi story. Also some horror. As there are several series of books with cats as one of the main "characters", Lillian Jackson Braun comes to mind, or the authors who have talking cats solving mysteries, this volume of short stories should be enjoyed by many. Some stories are reprints, others brand new. Many well known writers are here including Neil Gaiman, Lawrence Block, Sharyn McCrumb and Joyce Carol Oates. Something for every cat lover. If you don't like cats, well, you might, nevertheless, find some of the stories enjoyable.
43 of 56 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc977bc) out of 5 stars Force yourself past the sickening stories March 15 2010
By Cat Momma - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have followed Ellen Datlow's work and her anthologies for most of my adult life. I was excited to get this anthology. However.... The stories in which the cats are harmed, specifically "Catch" turned my stomach and distressed me so greatly I almost tossed the book away. I felt betrayed by this. I have never in my life gotten so angry and upset at a simple 3 page story. The most distressing point was that this story closely followed on the coat-tails of another that ended with the implied consuption of a cat.

There are other stories in this anthology, and they are worth the read. I am happy that Ellen herself has provided a guide to the stories to avoid, but to me, that isnt enough. It's like providing a fire extinguisher after a fire. To defend your position and say "This book *is* for cat lovers" while at the same time saying that you probably shouldnt have put some stories in the anthology, ALL during the same month of the release.... seems a little preposterious to me.

Read if you dare. This ISNT a book for cat lovers. This is a book for people who like reading about cats. There is a difference. I wouldnt say that I would line my cat's litter pan with this book, But I definately wish that I could have kept away from some of the horrible, stomach wrenching words and images that some of the stories delivered.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bc97c78) out of 5 stars NOT for the cat lover! Feb. 25 2015
By Sue Y - Published on
If you love cats this is not the book for you. I only got into about 5 stories and gave up listening. By the time I got to the story about people throwing cats between them until the cats die, and then starting over and doing it again and again day after day I was totally disgusted. None of the stories I listened to were at all enjoyable. Going to return this one!