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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Book Review: The Modern Fae's Guide to Surviving Humanity (anthology)

The Modern Fae's Guide to Surviving Humanity
Edited by Patricia Bray and Joshua Palmatier
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published March 6th 2012 by Penguin Group (USA)

What if the fae were still here, living among us? Perhaps living in secret, doing their best to pass for human? Or perhaps their existence is acknowledged, but they're still struggling to fit in. How have they survived? Are they outcasts clinging to the edges of society, or do their powers ensure success in the mortal realm? Here are fourteen fabulous tales-ranging from humor to dark fantasy-that explore how the creatures of fae are fitting into the modern world.

Introduction by editors Patricia Bray and Joshua Palmatier
“We Will Not Be Undersold” by Seanan McGuire
“Changeling” by Susan Jett
“Water-Called” by Kari Sperring
“The Roots of Aston Quercus” by Juliet E. McKenna
“To Scratch an Itch” by Avery Shade
“Continuing Education” by Kristine Smith
“How To Be Human™” by Barbara Ashford
“How Much Salt” by April Steenburgh
“Hooked” by Anton Strout
“Crash” by S. C. Butler
“Fixed” by Jean Marie Ward
“A People Who Always Know” by Shannon Page & Jay Lake
“The Slaughtered Lamb” by Elizabeth Bear
“Corrupted” by Jim C. Hines

I should start by telling you I love urban fantasy and the Fae, who are my favorite supernatural subject matter. Okay, now that it is out there it will be no surprise that I enjoyed this anthology of Fae short stories, the only question is how much. What made these stories such a treat for me was the quality as well as the subject matter. Kudos to the editors Bray and Palmatier for their selection of authors. I am not too surprised, since this editing duo put together an anthology last year called After Hours: Tales from the Ur-Bar. It was also the first review I ever wrote for I Smell Sheep! 
Check it out here.

Now back to this anthology; I won’t review each story since there are 14 of them, but I would give all the stories between 3.5 and 5 sheep. So now you are thinking… “why did you give the book 5 Sheep? Are you mathematically challenged?” No, I am not… well, maybe a little (Kalpar: That would explain the problems with that pay you owe me.) but I couldn't love each story the same so those ratings are relative to the collection. These are top quality stories, each one having its own unique style ranging from humorous to dark and melancholy while sticking to the general theme of how the Fae might be coexisting with humans.

This is a great book to have if you spend time in a carpool line, or waiting at a doctor’s office, or any time you have about 30 minutes to read. You will be entertained and maybe find a new author as well.

5 “Fae loving” Sheep

Sharon Stogner (editing and snark by Kalpar)


  1. Hmm. Hadn't seen this one before. Totally digging the cover and love the Fae. Okay, so they tend to freak me the flip out but I still love em :) Thanks for the heads up Sharon!

  2. you will like this collection. Just well written and entertaining. You would probably like the After Hours also.