1st, in hardback, Charlie Stross's latest Laundry Files novel (#7), "The Nightmare Stacks". I still buy all Charlie's stuff in hardcopy - I pass the Laundry Files books on to my son-in-law.
This one seemed less tired than the last one.
- It's a love story, between our vampire Laundry protagonist and our parallel-universe elven antagonist.
- Fun stuff, with a magic-based army taking on tanks and planes of the British military.
- An interesting, speculative example of how a human subspecies developing language later could cause a very different type of mind to be created.
- "The Children of Gal" by Allen M. Steele is your standard, colony planet forgets science and substitutes religion. That is a really old idea, I think the original Star Trek used it at least a couple of times.
- "Inhuman Garbage" by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is a police procedural with several threads that fail to come together by the end. So what was the point of including them?
There are some good and different stories, but no real standouts. I'm wondering if I should quit reading the other short story collections? I'm thinking not. I don't mind rereading the duplicates, they are mostly good stories. But 4 or 5 seems like too many.