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The Mythic Dream

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Member Reviews

I am sorry to say that I just couldn't get into this book.  I tried several times to start it, and just couldn't connect with it.
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I am a member of the American Library Association Reading List Award Committee. This title was suggested for the 2020 list. It was not nominated for the award. The complete list of winners and shortlisted titles is at 
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I came for Seanan McGuire, Naomi Novik, Stephen Graham Jones, and Rebecca Roanhorse, and I wasn't disappointed. There's something very satisfying about short collections and this one delivers.
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A good, solid anthology filled with good, solid stories. I enjoyed every story, which I can't always say with anthologies. I enjoyed learning about some myths I hadn't heard of before too! 

#TheMythicDream #NetGalley
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I was provided a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed are my own.

I pretty much sign on when I see Seanan's name on something, but I love the idea of this anthology--reworking myths. (I have a soft spot for retellings.) 

Seanan's story is a stunner, of course. I've come to recognize the settings and plot lines she loves, but they're always new and entrancing. Here, we revisit the carnival midway for a retelling of the Hades/Persephone myth. As with all the carnival stories, this one is otherwordly--the carnival making a dream-like world. The twist at the end was pleasantly unexpected, and, as always, tied up like a bow.
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I like to read story collections so I can find new authors to read. Unfortunately I could not find any stories in this collection that interested me.
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The Mythic Dream is a myth based anthology with 18 short fiction re-imaginings, edited by Dominik Parisien & Navah Wolfe. Released 3rd Sept. 2019 by Simon & Schuster on their Saga imprint, it's available in hardcover, paperback, audio, and ebook formats.

I've always had a particular fondness for collections/anthologies because short fiction is spare and technically challenging, so you get a better feel for an author's expertise with the form. Short fiction is less of a time commitment as well, so if one story is not working for you, there's another piece readily available in a few pages. Anthologies are also a rich source for finding new authors so you can search out their other works. Most of the authors included here were familiar, but there were a couple who were new (to me).

This is top shelf fiction and while some stories appealed to me more than others, there wasn't a single story in the lot which wasn't enjoyable and well crafted. The introduction (by the editors Parisien & Wolfe) was interesting and on point, and I really enjoyed the authors' notes after each story with insights and background for their writing process and inspirations.

Wonderful anthology, full of stories from 3-5 stars, weighted heavily toward the top end of the scale.

Four and a half stars. Good stuff. This would be a superlative choice for SF/fantasy readers, and great for gift giving. I can also imagine it being a good choice for a buddy or group read.
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Each author put their own spin on a myth or legend from around the world--some were sci-fi, some fantasy, some horror, etc.  I liked the diversity of characters and cultures and enjoyed learning about legends and myths with which I was previously unfamiliar.  This was a long collection, but worth reading.
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Every story in this anthology is fantastic!  They are based on myths from all over the world, reimagined.  It has more than just the usual Greek and Roman myths, which is refreshing.  I highly recommend this anthology!
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This is a superb collection of short stories that retell myths and legends from various cultures, including ancient Greece and Rome, India, Jewish tradition, and many more. I absolutely loved it--there are no weak stories here. Every one is interesting and well-written, and they all offer fantastic new takes on previously existing work. I recommend it highly for all readers of SFF and those who enjoy reworkings of traditional tales.
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*I received a digital copy of this title from NetGalley in exhange for an honest review*

This is one of the most impressive short story collections I have every read. With most within this format, it's usually a mixed bag of good and meh stories with a few amazing ones thrown in. I didn't love all of them, but each one at least left me something to think about. My favorites were by Seanan McGuire, Sarah Gailey, and Marmen Maria Machado, if I had to just pick three. I loved the diversity in each story, as well as the interesting path each retelling took.
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The Mythic Dream accomplished the near impossible for an anthology - every story was very good! I loved the wide variety of myths and incredibly diverse takes on those myths. I also loved the diversity of authors included in the anthology. While I truly enjoyed all of the stories, a few were favorites. I particularly liked "Phantoms of the Midway" by Seanan McGuire and "Curses Like Words, Like Feathers, Like Stories" by Kat Howard.
Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe have curated a truly outstanding anthology!
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I love the concept of this book! I've always loved stories from around the world and this book gives a fresh take on them.
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These are myths and legends from around the globe re-imagined by some of today's best authors. I'm typically a little wary when it comes to collections of short stories, but these were all very good. A lot of the myths were ones I hadn't heard of before, and there's a little section after each story where the author talks about the myth. I enjoyed that portion as well. Not only did I get to experience some great storytelling, but I also learned a little bit too.
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The Mythic Dream is an excellent collection of short stories by a wide range of authors. Each story re imagines some kind of myth, it leans heavily on Greek Mythology, but there are wonderful offerings from Hindu, Native American, Sumerian, and more. As always, with a collection of such diverse voices, there were a few stories that didn't click with me, but more than not I found fascinating. This is worth picking up even if you're interested in one or two of the authors because it's full of absolute gems.
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This is a terrific collection, with some very accomplished authors giving us modern interpretations of myths from an impressive range of traditions and sources.  Space opera from fragments of Sumerian poetry?  Tam Lin meets Persephone on the midway of a traveling carnival? Vengeful AI Indian goddesses?  Artemis and Actaeon via webcam?  YES.  To all of the above.
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A new spin on some old myths! I very much enjoyed this anthology and I'm not normally a short story reader. I'm going with 4 stars because I felt that the majority of the stories were well worth the 4 stars. The stories gave me a new perspective on some myths I'd read previously. 

If you are sensitive and/or easily triggered be cautious. Some of the stories are quite graphic.
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The average for my individual star ratings in this book would be 3.6 * but I feel strongly that this is a solid 4* collection. A diverse and captivating pantheon of who's who in current speculative fiction writing, The Mythic Dream is an excellent read for fans of myth retellings, especially if you enjoy your retellings to skew to the scifi spectrum.

The Mythic Dream brings readers 18 new riffs on old familiar myths, rewriting the past, and spinning potential futures. 

Highlights include T. Kingfisher's retelling of the Labors of Heracles told from the point of view of a bird in a bayou, Ann Leckie's futuristic alien spin on Sekhmet, Jy Yang's blend of scifi and fantasy reconstruction of the Cowherd and the Weaver-Girl, Carmen Maria Machado's hilarious contemporary version of Erysichthon of Thessily, and Amal El-Mohtar's writing to recenter Blodeuwedd in her own tale. 

There are a lot of names in this collection avid speculative readers will recognize. I'm very happy to have read it and would highly rec it. For more of my thoughts check out my full video review on youtube.
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4.5 Stars

Most of my blog readers know I'm not much of an anthology fan but I'm always willing to make an exception for anything by Dominik Parisien and Hugo Award-winning editor Navah Wolfe. Each of these stories is a recasting of classic mythology, and some are simply breathtaking. Featuring stories by Seanan McGuire, Ursula Vernon (as T. Kingfisher), Ann Leckie, Rebecca Roanhorse, JY Yang, Arkady Martine, Sarah Gailey, Carlos Hernandez, Stephen Graham Jones, Kat Howard, Jeffrey Ford, Alyssa Wong, John Chu, Naomi Novik, Carmen Maria Machado, and Amal El-Mohtar, these authors offer masterful retellings from Greek/Roman, Welsh/Irish, Jewish, Babylonian, Japanese, and Native American mythology. Of particular note for me were Sarah Gailey's farouche Thetis (and she has reasons to be), "Wild to Covet;" Amal El-Mohtar's sharp edged Blodeuwedd, "Florilegia, or Some Lies About Flowers;" J.Y. Yang's almost lyrical Tanabata, "Bridge of Crows;" and Naomi Novik's Ariadne and the Minotaur story, "Buried Deep." ("Minotaur," she said softly, "Minotaur, I'm here." *chills*) One of the main themes for these stories is that in many myths women are basically "created for" the circumstances, as wives, as mothers, daughters, they had no say so about their assigned mythological role. Until now.

I loved this anthology about as much as I loved their first, the epic "The Starlit Wood." Read one story a day, as a tonic for your soul.

I received a Digital Review Copy from Saga Press in exchange for an honest review.
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I won't belabor the point here as much as I did for the last collection edited by Parisien and Wolfe that I dipped into (the immortally wise and funny "Robots vs. Fairies"), but I will put it simply and straightforward ... ly: this is another fanstinkingtastic collection of stories from science fiction and fantasy authors of such range and skill that you're basically looking at a Hugo awards ballot, or perhaps the best possible mix of comic-con panelists. Every author with whom I was already familiar going into this collection: Seanan McGuire, Ann Leckie, J.Y. Yang, Arkady Martine, Sarah Gailey, Indra Das, Naomi Novik, and Amal El-Mohtar delivered an absolute show-stopper of a short story here. And authors of whom I'd heard but not read, or authors with whom I was completely unfamiliar, including Carmen Maria Machado, Alyssa Wong, and T. Kingfisher just ... well, they blew me away, quite frankly.

The format will be familiar to readers of "Robots vs. Fairies": a quick but pithy introduction explaining the "why myths?" of the collection, followed by the stories themselves, each appended with the author's brief take on the particular "why THAT myth?" and concluded with the contributing authors' short bios. Like their other collections, Parisien and Wolfe have managed to give this one an overarching "feeling" or perhaps motive that helps the whole thing hang together; without the specific idea behind this anthology, these would still be great stories. Together, though? They speak to each other. Together they are even more potent.

I do, of course, have my favorites. But given the overall strength and the overall level of excellence here among these short stories, favorites like mine are all down to shades and gradations of individual taste. I commend Parisien and Wolfe for yet another GORGEOUS and spectacularly fun-to-read anthology, and I'll be watching the shelves of my local indie to snatch up a print copy as soon as they trickle down to my part of the world.
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