Hex in the City – Fiction River – Review


I love short stories, and not just because they’re the only writing (aside from blog posts that is) that I can manage to actually finish doing. There is really nothing better then a bit of bite sized fiction, because let’s face it, word count really has nothing to do with finding things that resonate or stick with you. Not to say that I don’t relish a 1000 pager that delves into a fantastic land with characters I never want to be away from (I might be looking longingly at you, It by Stephen King…) but if you can get that same afterglow after reading just a few pages, well…you’re doin’ it right.


When I picked up Fiction River’s volume 5, Hex in the City, from the library, I got it on a whim and didn’t know anything about it, and even though I often pick out stuff that way, my expectations were the ush…so, pretty low. Mostly, I just hope that there will be a story (or even two!) in there that might find me a new author that I can enjoy reading some more of. I managed to find Joe Abercrombie that way (and unless you read my raving post about it here you might not know that I love, love, LOVED his First Law series. You’re getting that now you say? ‘Cuz I’d be more than happy to talk about it some more…No? This is a blog post that’s supposed to be about another book?…Oh, yes…I guess it is…heh, heh). So, if I can have that experience again, I’m totally in on any new short story filled lovelies that I can get my hands on.

Kerrie L. Hughes edited this particular lovely, the theme being paranormal urban fantasy, and when I read it, I think I found my socks somewhere hanging off the ceiling fan. I don’t even know exactly when they blew off, and didn’t much care, as I was too busy reading. This girl knows her stuff! I was hoping for a few good stories and I think this one more than delivered, possibly because it was teeming with best selling and award winning writers (Teeming, I say! And you know, who really even says that? I’m sure that means something important…).

So, here’s just a wee taste of my top 5 from Hex in the City, in the order in which they were published in the book (you will just have to guess which ones I loved best – although I may have given some subtle hints…):

  1. Geriatric Magic  – Stephanie Writt – What happens when a stranger sits down at your cafe table? I really liked that the main characters here were a bit less typical than the usual suspects. I’ve also drank hot beverages with a straw, but it had more to do with weirdness than necessity.
  2. Red as SnowSeanan McGuire – This is about two characters from another book called Discount Armageddon and some high jinks these shapeshifters fall into while going out for pizza. Mmmm…pizza….
  3. Music’s PriceAnthea Sharp – This one was quite possibly my favourite of the bunch, (see, told you it was subtle) with a musician who can see faeries when he plays the cello. I have a soft spot for all things faerie and cello…
  4. The Sound of My Own VoiceDayle A. Dermatis – Reveals what can happen when your voice has a certain affect on people. My voice also has an affect, but I think it’s more about the tuning out of…this was much more interesting.
  5. Dead Men WalkingAnnie Reed – This one gives #3 a run for it’s money as it has both lawyers and zombies! Yessssss! You know I love zombies right? I may have even talked about them a wee little bit… like here and maybe here

Have you read this book, or any others by Fiction River? Have you read anything else by these authors? Any good short story anthologies to recommend? If so, I’d love to hear about ’em. 🙂

And for this weeks challenge update:

  • Blog post 9/52 – check
  • Writing in the screenplay – check – word count up another 1403
  • Drawing – check!
  • Feet writing & drawing – check.

Until next week…