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Beyond the Pale: A fantasy anthology
 
 

Beyond the Pale: A fantasy anthology [Kindle Edition]

Jim Butcher , Saladin Ahmed , Peter Beagle , Heather Brewer , Kami Garcia , Nancy Holder , Gillian Philip , Jane Yolen , Rachel Caine , Henry Herz
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Beyond the Pale is an anthology of fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal stories that skirt the border between our world and others. Was that my imagination, or did I hear something under my bed? What was that blurred movement in my darkened closet? There is but a thin Veil separating the real and the fantastic, and therein dwell the inhabitants of these stories.

Beyond the Pale contains eleven dark fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal short stories by award-winning and New York Times bestselling authors:

- "Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela" by Saladin Ahmed (author of Throne of the Crescent Moon)
- "The Children of the Shark God" by Peter S. Beagle (author of The Last Unicorn)
- "Misery" & "Shadow Children" by Heather Brewer (author of Vladimir Tod)
- "Even Hand" by Jim Butcher (author of the Dresden Files series)
- "Death Warmed Over" by Rachel Caine (author of the Weather Warden series)
- "Red Run" by Kami Garcia (author of Beautiful Creatures)
- "Pale Rider" & "The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones" by Nancy Holder (author of Wicked)
- "Frost Child" and "South" by Gillian Philip (author of the Rebel Angels series)
- "A Knot of Toads" by Jane Yolen (author of Owl Moon)

The noun “pale” refers to a stake (as in impaling vampires) or pointed piece of wood (as in a paling fence). “Pale” came to refer to an area enclosed by a paling fence. Later, it acquired the figurative meaning of an enclosed and therefore safe domain. Conversely, "beyond the pale" means foreign, strange, or threatening. You are about to go Beyond the Pale.

About the Author

Saladin Ahmed’s short stories have been nominated for the Nebula and Campbell awards, have appeared in numerous magazines and podcasts, and have been translated into five foreign languages. He has also written nonfiction for The Escapist, Fantasy Magazine, and Tor.com. Throne of the Crescent Moon is his first novel. Peter S. Beagle is the Hugo, Nebula, Inkpot Award for Outstanding Achievement in Science Fiction and Fantasy, and World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement winning author of The Last Unicorn and Two Hearts. The Last Unicorn was adapted to an animated movie. Peter also wrote the screenplay for the 1978 movie version of The Lord of the Rings. Heather Brewer is the NY Times bestselling author of the Vladimir Tod series. She grew up on a diet of Twilight Zone and books by Stephen King. She chased them down with every drop of horror she could find—in books, movie theaters, on television. The most delicious parts of her banquet, however, she found lurking in the shadowed corners of her dark imagination. Jim Butcher is the NY Times bestselling author of the Dresden Files series, the Codex Alera, and a new steampunk series, the Cinder Spires. His resume includes a laundry list of skills which were useful a couple of centuries ago, and he plays guitar quite badly. Kami Garcia is the NY Times bestselling coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures novels and the Bram Stoker Award nominated novel Unbreakable, and the sequel Unmarked, in the Legion series. Kami is fascinated by the paranormal, and she’s very superstitious. Nancy Holder is a Bram Stoker Award winning and NY Times bestselling author (the Wicked Saga) also known for her novels and episode guides based on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Teen Wolf, Beauty and the Beast, and other TV shows. Gillian Philip’s books include Crossing the Line, Bad Faith, The Opposite of Amber and the Rebel Angels series. She has been nominated and shortlisted for awards including the Carnegie Medal, the Scottish Children’s Book Award and the David Gemmell Legend Award. Jane Yolen, often called "the Hans Christian Andersen of America," is the author of over 300 books, including Owl Moon, The Devil’s Arithmetic and How do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? Her books and stories have won two Nebulas, a World Fantasy Award, a Caldecott, the Golden Kite Award, three Mythopoeic awards, two Christopher Medals, and a nomination for the National Book Award among others.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 502 KB
  • Print Length: 202 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0989448738
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Birch Tree Publishing; 2 edition (7 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00M3RQNE0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #25,985 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful Collection 1 Aug 2014
Format:Paperback
4.5 stars - This is an absolutely fantastic collection of fantasy stories aimed at older Young Adults written by top-notch authors that all centre around the abstract theme of that thin veil that separates our world from the beyond. With most anthologies as a reader I always expect a mixed bag with perhaps a dud or two but Beyond the Pale is without exception the best collection of short stories I've read this year and this is my 10th. The stories range from great to excellent. Most of the authors I had heard of, several I'd already read and the others I would read again. A couple of my all-time favourite authors are included here also: Peter S. Beagle and Jane Yolen. Superb!

1. Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela by Saladin Ahmed (2009) - A fine story to open this collection with! Hard to describe its genre as just what exactly but mostly it resembles a tale of the Arabian Nights with touches of Frankenstein, mythological creatures or perhaps demons and a narrative similar to Dracula's Jonathan Harker as he tells the tale of his strange journey and the summons he receives. Well done! (4/5)

2. The Children of the Shark God by Peter S. Beagle (2010) - I love this author and have read a lot of his work. This story grabbed me from the first paragraph as I entered the folkloric story of the shark god. The plot is quite simple and basic, one done many times, of the god transforming into human form, taking a maiden as his wife and siring offspring, here it is twins. He only returns to visit the wife once a year but the children are never told who their father is. It is Beagle's magical writing that transcends this tale beyond the typical plot.
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Format:Kindle Edition
http://lynnsbooks.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/beyond-the-pale-edited-by-henry-herz/

I was given an opportunity to take part in a book tour for Beyond the Pale and given the authors involved in this piece of work jumped at the chance. I love the way the book starts out with a definition of what the phrase ‘beyond the pale’ actually means – long story short it actually means to go beyond the boundaries of safety!! I like that. In fact the introduction got me off to a great start. Not to mention that cover. Just feast your eyes on it. It’s simply gorgeous.

The line up is as follows:

Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela by Saladin Ahmed
The Children of the Shark God by Peter S. Beagle
Misery by Heather Brewer
Shadow Children by Heather Brewer
Even Hand by Jim Butcher
Red Run by Kami Garcia
Pale Rider By Nancy Holder
Frost Child by Gillian Philip
South by Gillian Philip
A Knot of Toads by Jane Yolen
The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones
by Nancy & Belle Holder

There is undoubtedly much to choose from here and frankly I enjoyed all the stories for very different reasons.

The opening story is a great start involving a hermit and his wife and the man who they seek help from in order to achieve their dream. An unusual tale – prepare yourself for demons!

Then move from demons to Gods and encounter the Shark God and the results of his love affair with a mortal woman.

Misery was completely intriguing. A compelling little number about a strange town where each year the residents are given a gift – unfortunately this doesn’t always result in happiness as Alek is about to discover – he has a bad feeling this year!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good Collection 18 Aug 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela by Saladin Ahmed was weird in parts. Creepy, intriguing and clever though. The slightly far-fetched gives a magical feel to it. 3/5
The Children of the Shark God by Peter S. Beagle is a story that you need to let your imagination go wild with. I do wish the Shark God reacted differently. 3/5
Misery by Heather Brewer was a miserable story. Misery wasn't just the name of the town, it was everywhere and in everything. Wasn't my thing though. 2/5
Shadow Children by Heather Brewer was the second story by this author. It was a ton better too. It may have been short but it was creeptastic! 4/5
Even Hand by Jim Butcher started out with mobsters and I knew I was in. It ended with paranormal though and somehow still worked. 4/5
Red Run by Kami Garcia was my favorite in the book. It had a very powerful opening that pulls you in deep. Scared the crap out of me too. By now, you all know, that's what I love. 5/5
Pale Rider by Nancy Holder I wanted more from. The ending didn't work for me at all. There was cool elements, but not enough to say I liked it. 2/5
Frost Child by Gillian Philip is a fast paced fantasy that kept my attention from start to finish. 4/5
South by Gillian Philip is the second story she contributed to the book. It was really peculiar. I just didn't get it or like it at all. 1/5
A Knot of Toads by Jane Yolen is a story I loved! Had a great lesson; things are not always what they seem. 4/5
The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones by Nancy and Belle Holder is a second story for Nancy Holder. This one is co-written though. It reminded me of the movie American Tale or Feivel Goes West. The story is about mice and that is reminiscent of this story too. It was a very cute tale, with a twist. 3/5

All-in-all it is a decent read with many things to attract the reader. I definitely know a bunch of people that would enjoy it.
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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I really enjoyed "The Children of the Shark God" 5 Aug 2014
By vs - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I just finished reading this eclectic compilation of short stories. Each one captured my attention in its own way. I really enjoyed "The Children of the Shark God". I have always loved mythology stories and this one entertained just like I remembered. "Misery" was definitely a thought provoking story. The plot was different and pulled at my imagination and had an effect on my emotions and thoughts. I also really liked "Pale Rider", a magical story of the goblins and fair folk. For a short story, there was a lot going on and the tale was entertaining and fascinating. This group of short stories is not for children. Some of the stories are scary and dark. But I highly recommend them for the reader looking for interesting, fun stories dealing with the other worlds beyond our own. You will not be disappointed.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful Collection 1 Aug 2014
By Nicola Mansfield - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
4.5 stars - This is an absolutely fantastic collection of fantasy stories aimed at older Young Adults written by top-notch authors that all centre around the abstract theme of that thin veil that separates our world from the beyond. With most anthologies as a reader I always expect a mixed bag with perhaps a dud or two but Beyond the Pale is without exception the best collection of short stories I've read this year and this is my 10th. The stories range from great to excellent. Most of the authors I had heard of, several I'd already read and the others I would read again. A couple of my all-time favourite authors are included here also: Peter S. Beagle and Jane Yolen. Superb!

1. Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela by Saladin Ahmed (2009) - A fine story to open this collection with! Hard to describe its genre as just what exactly but mostly it resembles a tale of the Arabian Nights with touches of Frankenstein, mythological creatures or perhaps demons and a narrative similar to Dracula's Jonathan Harker as he tells the tale of his strange journey and the summons he receives. Well done! (4/5)

2. The Children of the Shark God by Peter S. Beagle (2010) - I love this author and have read a lot of his work. This story grabbed me from the first paragraph as I entered the folkloric story of the shark god. The plot is quite simple and basic, one done many times, of the god transforming into human form, taking a maiden as his wife and siring offspring, here it is twins. He only returns to visit the wife once a year but the children are never told who their father is. It is Beagle's magical writing that transcends this tale beyond the typical plot. It is beautiful and ends up dealing with death (as much of his work does) and the selfishness of wallowing in one's own grief over the death of a loved one. Lovely! (5/5)

3. Misery by Heather Brewer (2012) - Misery is a small town but no one knows how it got its name. Certainly no one is ever miserable. They are all quite jolly, to a degree. They do wish, perhaps that Misery had colours, like somewhere they've been before, but no, Misery is black, white and shades of grey. And every year every one has a day when they get a Gift from the one with the psychic connection able to give the Gifts. Alek is afraid his Gift will be bad this year, not because it has ever happened to anyone before, but because he has an inner sense about it. And when Alek receives his Gift it is something the gift giver has only given once before. Nothing. (not just *not* a present). Nothingness. The absence of being... Creepy. Loved it (5/5)

4. Shadow Children by Heather Brewer (2010) - This is a new author for me so I was hoping this would be as good as the previous story by her, and no disappointment here. Total creep-out! Little brother Jon is afraid of the monsters in his room at night and big brother Dax is stuck babysitting him. Dax thinks to let Jon "cry it out" leaving him in the dark a little longer but the piercing scream sends him running. Then the two of them are battling not their just their own lives but the lives of the entire human race. Creepy!! (5/5)

5. Evan Hand by Jim Butcher (2010)- I'm not a Dresden Files reader; tried the first book and it didn't work for me. This story takes place in that world and is told by Marcone. It's an ok story about the underworld involving demons, etc and has a bit of a Cal MacDonald vibe. But Cal is waaay better. Harry is not actually in this story. First story I didn't love. (3/5)

6. Red Run by Kami Garcia (2012)- Oh, a ghost story! A girl goes out along a haunted road at night to get the ghost who has killed six people over the years including her older brother. Really, really, really good. Everything a ghost story needs and very tense at the end, not knowing what is going to happen. I hadn't heard of this author before. (5/5)

7. Pale Rider by Nancy Holder (2012) - Awesome! This is longer than any others yet and could be the story the title of the anthology is based on. This story actually feels very much like the prologue of a novel; it is so in depth, and even though it ends perfectly a whole novel could follow up from the story. Eight years after the end of the world a an African-American girl is found by a German young man and taken to Germany, there she discovers her magical talent and together they search for the answers that caused the great apocalypse. Wonderful fantasy about fairies and goblins. (5/5)

8. Frost Child by Gillian Philip (2011) - This starts with an editor's note explaining the story is a prequel to the author's novel "Firebrand". It is a haunting story of how a little girl came to be found and brought back to her own people and yet she is quite different. A tale of the Sithe, witches and kelpies. The girl is a fascinating creature but there is a darkness about her that is not evil, but uncomfortable. Well-written. I haven't read this author before (4/5)

9. South by Gillian Philip (2012) - Another haunting story of the sea but selkies this time. I love selkies! A generational story of a man who falls in love with a selkie, their daughter and eventually her son, his grandchild. A beautiful story, told skillfully with just a hint of darkness in the atmosphere. Selkies are my absolute favourite mythological creature. Both of these stories were good. I will have to look into this author. (4/5)

10. A Knot of Toads by Jane Yolen (2005) - Fantastic! I'm a long-time fan of Jane Yolen and this tale of witches, curses and days of yore is spellbinding. There are three knots mentioned in the tale and as each is recognised and undone in it's own way, a family loosens the ties the Old Witches have on them but not before the current patriarch is frightened to death by what he has found out. Wonderful! (5/5)

11. The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones by Nancy & Belle Holder (2006) - As the editor's note proclaims the book will finish off like any great meal with a "light dessert". This is a fun, cute reimagining of the Dracula story but peopled with mice and rats. The story concentrates on the storm at sea and the count's attacks upon Lightning (Lucy). Cute. (4/5)
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beyond The Pale: Gripping Short Stories at their best 1 Aug 2014
By Amanda Evans - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I was delighted to receive an advance copy of this book in return for my honest opinion. First off, I have to say that I love fantasy and it has always been a favourite genre of mine. This book is a compilation of short stories, something I very seldom read. I was a little apprehensive but I'm glad I received this book and it has changed my opinion of short stories completely. I always thought of short stories as being too short to actually capture the mind or attention. I didn't feel that they would build the characters or allow me to become engrossed. I was terribly wrong and Beyond the Pale has proven that to me.

Beyond the Pale contains eleven dark fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal short stories by award-winning and New York Times bestselling authors:

Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Jameela by Saladin Ahmed
The Children of the Shark God by Peter S. Beagle
Misery by Heather Brewer
Shadow Children by Heather Brewer
Even Hand by Jim Butcher
Red Run by Kami Garcia
Pale Rider by Nancy Holder
The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones by Nancy Holder
Frost Child by Gillian Philip
South by Gillian Philip
A Knot of Toads by Jane Yolen

All of these short stories have their own merits and selling points and they all capture your attention and draw you in from the first paragraph. What really surprised me was the depth in the characters and how even with a short story you could become them, feel their emotions, go through their trials and tribulations and endure what they faced. The authors wrote each story beautifully and the words flowed with ease. I actually found myself wanting more and that is always a good thing. One of stories that really stood out for me is “The Children of the Shark God” by Peter S. Beagle. This was beautifully written and flowed really well. It was a strange tale but one that fully took over as the pages turned. The emotions that consumed me and drew me into the story were ones that I would normally only find in a full length novel. I was amazed at how much a short story could grip me and yet still provide a complete tale. This really was a true work of art and the story was something I had never read before. It wasn't a rehash of Twilight or vampire romance. It wasn't a shape-shifting or werewolf tale; it was something totally different and new and there is an excerpt below for those interested in reading some of it.

All in all, this book is definitely one for my collection and one that I know I will recommend to friends. It is one that I can pull out when I need a quick read that will completely absorb my mind and take me to a new world of fantasy, where anything is possible. I also know that I will be diving into the novels of these best-selling authors too because their work is truly amazing and they have mastered the art of creating believable characters that draw you in and allow you to become part of their lives.

I really enjoyed the stories contained in this anthology and each one is so different. They are memorable and will stick with you for quite some time after reading and there are a few that will have you questioning yourself and your beliefs too. You will find stories about Gods, ghosts, magic and so much more in this collection and there really is something for everyone.

Published by www.birchtreepub.com, Beyond the Pale is a great collection and one that has proven to me that short stories can bring just as much reading pleasure as a full length novel when written in the manner of those in this book.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating! 9 Aug 2014
By Marie-Therese - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Cover:
It looks like the cover is hand drawn and that's a thing I really like! It looks like the woman is curious about something (going into the woods).

Content:
Every single story in this book is beyond awesome. Many different influences to the whole of the book. I have to be honest... I'm a fan of Gillian Philip since I read the two stories! Frost Child was ah-mazing!! <3 Also Red Run was pretty awesome, I was soo into the story that I would have love it to be a whole book. :D
All in all, every story is amazing and the authos are so talented (I have to admit I haven't heard of one of them before D-x). And now I will look up all their books, so, yes, this anthology pretty much shows how good they can write. <3

Conclusion:
I highly recommend Beyond the pale, it makes you curious and it's totally fascinating (in general I not so much like anthologies.. this one is an exception! <3). Of course 5 of 5 stars.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent anthology for lovers of dark fantasy.... 22 Aug 2014
By Rabid Readers Reviews - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
The editor of this novel, Henry Herz, gave me a copy in exchange for participating in this blog tour.

I am a huge fan of “The Dresden Files” by Jim Butcher so when the editor of the piece approached me to write a review, that author was the one I was most looking forward to reading. I’d heard of some of the others but had never read them and wasn’t really interested in learning more about that work. Everything changed upon finishing this wonderfully laid out anthology. The stories leave readers wanting more when they shift to the next but the arrangement makes for a good flow while the sameness of dark tone peppered with humor keeps readers in the moment.

My favorite story was by old favorite, Jim Butcher. As many authors do, he chose to use his anthology story to expand on a character from the Dresden world. Johnny Marcone is a mobster who makes life more interesting for Harry Dresden and Butcher gives us a closer look at his character in “Even Hand.” Butcher shows the readers Marcone’s view of himself as a professional monster and yet shows us a deeper side that has to be consciously kept at bay. In a classic economy of words, Butcher gives us a compelling story that easily stands on its own while thrilling existing fans.

“The Adventures of Lightning Merriemouse-Jones” by Nancy & Belle Holder was a great way to finish the anthology. It was nice and light and fun. The author’s crafted a classic story (Dracula) and set it at sea using mice so there’s a “Secret of Nihm” gone wrong feeling throughout and it was just wonderfully hilarious. Miss Lightning Merriemouse-Jones is a Penelope Pitstop for a new generation.

If you’re a fan of fantasy or the paranormal, I urge you to buy “Beyond the Pale” today. It’s a delightful look into a scarier world than our own with delicious flashes of brilliance from the authors. I’m a huge fan of short stories and fantasy in general and “Beyond the Pale” falls directly into the wheelhouse of fans of those genres.
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