Monday, December 24, 2012
Fungi - Edited by Orrin Grey and Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Fungi is a new anthology from Innsmouth Press edited by Orrin Grey and Silvia Moreno-Garcia. First let me compliment the brilliant cover art from Oliver Wetter. He does a very nice job of capturing the spirit of what lies between the covers of this anthology.
As I read the 27 stories in this collection I found my response to be as varied as the stories themselves. There were some I loved, some I was lukewarm about and others that I just didn't care for at all.
The anthology starts with "Hyphae" a tale from John Langan. One of the better stories in Fungi.
After that the stories get more and more out there, including a land of mushrooms, a tale where every character is named for a type of mushroom. There's a fungus western, pychedelic mushrooms. Some of the stories are truly Lovecraftian and then there are stories that just have a fungi theme. There a few familiar names in this anthology and plenty of relative newcomers.
One of my favorite stories is written by Molly Tanzer and Jesse Bullington. "Tubby McMungus, Fat from Fungus', a wonderful, fairy-tale type of story involving cats, rats and of course fungus. There's also the delightful ""Wild Mushrooms" from Jane Herenstein and the clever "Letters To a Fungus" by Polenth Blake. Nick Mamatas makes an appearance with a compelling story of revenge, titled 'The Shaft Through the Middle of It."
When I read an anthonology, I certainly don't anticipate loving every story, but it would be nice to enjoy more than a handful. Thus 3 of 5 Stars. This means I'm glad I read it, but I'm just not crazy about it.
If it sounds interesting to you, read it by all means. The paperback ($15) and e-book ($8) editions of Fungi are identical. However, Fungi is also be available as a hardcover ($28.00, available only via Innsmouth Free Press ) with three extra stories not included in the paperback and ten black-and-white illustrations by Bernie Gonzalez.