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Firebirds Rising: An Anthology of Original Science Fiction and Fantasy

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This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy, including Fancesca Lia Block, Alan Dean Foster, Diana Wynne Jones, and Tanith Lee. This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy, including Fancesca Lia Block, Alan Dean Foster, Diana Wynne Jones, and Tanith Lee.


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This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy, including Fancesca Lia Block, Alan Dean Foster, Diana Wynne Jones, and Tanith Lee. This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy, including Fancesca Lia Block, Alan Dean Foster, Diana Wynne Jones, and Tanith Lee.

14 review for Firebirds Rising: An Anthology of Original Science Fiction and Fantasy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Catie

    This is going to be a bit of a cheat review because I’ve acknowledged to myself that the only reason I checked out this anthology was to read the Joss and Mavkel story The Real Thing by Alison Goodman. I may choose to keep renewing this thing like a jerk so I can keep it and read the Kelly Link or Tamora Pierce stories, but for now I feel perfectly comfortable giving this anthology four stars based solely on the The Real Thing alone.I love this story, but it’s bittersweet because it’s such a bea This is going to be a bit of a cheat review because I’ve acknowledged to myself that the only reason I checked out this anthology was to read the Joss and Mavkel story The Real Thing by Alison Goodman. I may choose to keep renewing this thing like a jerk so I can keep it and read the Kelly Link or Tamora Pierce stories, but for now I feel perfectly comfortable giving this anthology four stars based solely on the The Real Thing alone.I love this story, but it’s bittersweet because it’s such a beautiful glimpse of everything that a Joss Aaronson series could have been. I’ve just visited Alison Goodman’s website and apparently she’s working on a “new series” so I have to assume that poor Joss has been set aside, at least temporarily if not forever. I think that Joss and Mavkel will be marked down in the imaginary log where I keep track of these things as one of my favorite human/alien teams of all time. Joss is fierce, independent, and determined. She’s flawed in all of my favorite ways: she’s too blunt, too self-contained, and just a little bit damaged. Mavkel is a little bit damaged too: he’s desperate for the intense connection that he used to have with his now dead twin Kelmav. I thought that it was interesting that Singing the Dogstar Blues has no romance in it whatsoever. I found that refreshing and bold. Joss’ adventure really stood on its own without relying on any kind of hastily inserted love interest.However, this story gives us a thrilling glimpse into all of the complications and humor that arise when Joss finds herself going on a date with a young comp kid and Mavkel is highly curious about the whole affair. There is also more information here about the tension that’s building between the comp kids (genetically engineered to be superior, but only allowed into the academy in small percentages) and the naturally conceived students from wealthy families.Alas, all this story does for me is dramatically increase my desperation for another Joss and Mavkel adventure. Curse you for a horrible tease, Alison Goodman! Would it help if I begged? I’m not above begging here.Perfect Musical PairingSpoon – Don’t You EvahJoss, I will miss you terribly, but at least we’ll always have Spoon.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Wealhtheow

    A collection of YA short stories. Yet another clunker from Charles DeLint, another terrifically imaginative story from Diana Wynne Jones, and several stories that felt all too much like snippets from a novel. Francesca Lia Block's story was literally just one of her dreams, transcribed--not a good read. There was no point to Tanith Lee's lackluster "The House on the Planet." Kelly Link's "The Wizards of Perfil" was evocative, if a little too surreal in places. Ellen Klages' "In the House of the A collection of YA short stories. Yet another clunker from Charles DeLint, another terrifically imaginative story from Diana Wynne Jones, and several stories that felt all too much like snippets from a novel. Francesca Lia Block's story was literally just one of her dreams, transcribed--not a good read. There was no point to Tanith Lee's lackluster "The House on the Planet." Kelly Link's "The Wizards of Perfil" was evocative, if a little too surreal in places. Ellen Klages' "In the House of the Seven Librarians" doesn't delve deep but IS a really fun, comfortable read; it's the tale of seven librarians who shut themselves up in a library and raise a baby, with lots of sensory details and librarian in-jokes. The best story is Kara Dalkey's "Hives." As Oyceter said, it has a modern, truly teen-oriented tone that echoes Scott Westerfeld's Pretties series. In "Hives," a certain kind of cell phone hooks directly to your brain, leading to incredibly powerful, addictive cliques. The concept is chilling, the world-building intense, and I loved the main character.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tatiana

    Not a collection where all stories are good. I ended up skimming a lot of them. If you read only one story out of this anthology, let it be Kara Dalkey's "Hives" - mean girls in future, who are joined into cliques(=hives) via 24/7 addictive, straight-to-brain cell communication. A disconnect from a hive can be lethal. Great story with enough meat for a whole book.The others worth reading - "The Real Thing" by Allison Goodman (time-travel school and a cute telepathic alien); "Perception" by Alan Not a collection where all stories are good. I ended up skimming a lot of them. If you read only one story out of this anthology, let it be Kara Dalkey's "Hives" - mean girls in future, who are joined into cliques(=hives) via 24/7 addictive, straight-to-brain cell communication. A disconnect from a hive can be lethal. Great story with enough meat for a whole book.The others worth reading - "The Real Thing" by Allison Goodman (time-travel school and a cute telepathic alien); "Perception" by Alan Dean Foster (again, aliens); "Quill" by Carol Emswiller (aliens!) and "Wintermoon Wish" by Sharon Shinn (a Christmasy feel good story).In case you haven't noticed, I pretty much liked almost all sci-fi shorts and only one fantasy story.

  4. 4 out of 5

    CuriousLibrarian

    I originally went in search of this book because a friend thought I would enjoy the story "In the House of the Seven Librarians," and told me that some of the other stories were "pretty good too." I picked it up and discovered that it was populated with some extremely well-known sf/fantasy authors! So I sat down to read the whole thing.As in every anthology, there are some stories that are better than others, and some authors that I historically don't like. But I found one stand-out author whose I originally went in search of this book because a friend thought I would enjoy the story "In the House of the Seven Librarians," and told me that some of the other stories were "pretty good too." I picked it up and discovered that it was populated with some extremely well-known sf/fantasy authors! So I sat down to read the whole thing.As in every anthology, there are some stories that are better than others, and some authors that I historically don't like. But I found one stand-out author whose work is new to me: Alison Goodman. And her story is apparently a side story from a previously published book. So, I will certainly be following up on that!I really appreciated some of the choices that the editor, Sharyn November, made in putting this book together. She put the author bio and discussion of the story in the pages immediately following each story instead of the end of the book. Plus, she deliberately chose the order of the stories in such a way that you could read them in order if you so choose (which is my preferred method, and I know it puts me in the minority).This is a YA book, and some of the stories are directly aimed at teens. But there is much here for an adult reader to savor as well if the YA stories are not your thing. Highly recommended, and I will be checking out the other anthologies in this series.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rhea

    While reading books, what are readers allowed to hope for?And when the book promises something like this:This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy.andWhat you hold in your hands is more than a book. It is a gateway between worlds - from deep space to Faerie to just around the corner. The seventeen authors who have contributed original stories to Firebirds Rising have won virtually every l While reading books, what are readers allowed to hope for?And when the book promises something like this:This star-studded follow-up to the acclaimed "Firebirds" contains riveting, original stories by some of today's masters of science fiction and fantasy.andWhat you hold in your hands is more than a book. It is a gateway between worlds - from deep space to Faerie to just around the corner. The seventeen authors who have contributed original stories to Firebirds Rising have won virtually every literary prize and made best-seller lists worldwide. These authors... have written singular stories that will capture readers and spark their imaginations.Firebirds Rising proves once again that Firebird is more than simply just an imprint devoted to publishing the best science fiction and fantasy for teenagers and adults - it is a gather place for writers and reader, from teenage to adult, all over the world.(less)Are they allowed to hope for something like this?or something like this?or even something like this? especially when these stories are written by AWARD WINNING AUTHORS!?!Apparently, the answer is no.See, these stories are mostly uninspired. Of course, there are a few lovely ones, but they are not enough to redeem this collection.I admit I didn't read all of them, but here are the ones I did:Huntress: a generally uninspired story with EEEVIL rich kids, a Nice Heroine, and a moon goddess which fits in somehow. There is one semi-exciting action scene, and a semi deus-ex-machine ending, and none of it meshes well. Blah. (2 stars)Unwrapping: A cute-ish story about two girl's friendship. However, its all rather meh and the idea is rather unoriginal. (2.5 stars)The Real Thing: A bit boring, but still thought-provoking and cute (I love Mav!) Also, the romance aspect felt fresh in the sense that the love interest wasn't flawless. Recommended. (3.5 stars)Little (Grrrl) Lost: Blah! The only reason I read it was because I was intrigued by the "borrowers." Otherwise, it was preachy and boring. (2 stars)I'll Give You My Word: Clever, cute, and funny. This one's biggest flaw is how juvenile it is - it's more middle grade than YA. Great for fans of DWJ, though. Semi-recommended(3.5 stars)In the House of the Seven Librarians: Possible my favorite of the collection. Review published here. Recommended. (3.5 stars)Wintermoon Wish: A heartwarming fantasy/Christmas-y story. This one's a bit typical, but well-written and enjoyable. Semi-recommended. (3 stars)The Wizards of Perfil: I've been trying to cook up a review for this one to convey what a mess it was. Sadly, nothing comes to mind, so all I'll say is SKIP. (1 star)Jack O'Lantern: Didn't readQuill: Intriguing, thought-provoking, and exciting, though a bit disjointed. Semi-recommended. (3 stars)Blood Roses: Confusing, creepy, and very, very dark. Block's prose is lovely though at times overwrought, and the story is more style than substance. (2 stars)Hives: Didn't readPerception: Didn't readThe House on the Planet Great premise, terrible execution. Basically plotless, with a ridiculous conclusion. Boring, boring, boring. (2 stars)Cousins: Didn't readWhat Used to be Good Still Is: I was bored to tears, and even took to skimming (which I NEVER do) though it's probably only me. (no idea how to rate this) ANYWAYS, I didn't like this at all. Alternatives: Of course, there's the stellar Lips Touch Three Times, which is much better than it sounds. There's also the anthology Zombies vs. Unicorns, and Firebirds Soaring, which is a much better collection than this one. Finally, there's Red Spikes, though only for mature, experienced YA readers.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jessica M

    Name: Jessica McClellandAPA citation: November, S.(Ed.). (2006) Firebirds rising. Penguin: NY.Genre: Short StoriesAward (if applicable):Format: Book, Short StoriesSelection process: The book was favored in Booklist. Estes, S. (2006). Firebirds rising: An anthology of original science fiction and fantasy. Booklist, 102(15), 32.Review: Firebirds Rising offers a multitude of short stories from popular young adult science fiction and fantasy authors. Fans of ghosts, aliens, goddesses and the like wi Name: Jessica McClellandAPA citation: November, S.(Ed.). (2006) Firebirds rising. Penguin: NY.Genre: Short StoriesAward (if applicable):Format: Book, Short StoriesSelection process: The book was favored in Booklist. Estes, S. (2006). Firebirds rising: An anthology of original science fiction and fantasy. Booklist, 102(15), 32.Review: Firebirds Rising offers a multitude of short stories from popular young adult science fiction and fantasy authors. Fans of ghosts, aliens, goddesses and the like will enjoy the tales found inside and also hearing something new from their favorite authors. Authors like Alison Goodman, author of Eon and Singing the Dog Star Blues will find a Maev and Joss adventure in the short story The Real Thing. Tamora Pierce is also featured in a short story of Artemis in Huntress. Each author takes up only a few pages in the anthology and the novel seems to move fast despite its weight. As the third edition in an anthology series, Firebirds Rising may be a little lackluster compared to its predecessors and seems to favor one genre over the other in regards to content. Interestingly, November put the author bios at the end of each of their tales instead at the end, which seemed to work with the flow of the book. Professionals may want to consider one of the previous editions if low on budget, but the novel should be given proper credit for its accomplishments. Recommended.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Nicky

    Firebirds Rising is an anthology full of fantasy and SF stories, mostly for a young adult audience. They're all by different authors, so naturally, some are hits and some are misses. I encountered quite a few new authors here, though I'm not really eager to follow up most of them.The first story, 'Huntress', is by Tamora Pierce. It wasn't really an encouraging start, for me. The mythological references could be interesting, but the whole idea of the story is that a goddess comes along and punish Firebirds Rising is an anthology full of fantasy and SF stories, mostly for a young adult audience. They're all by different authors, so naturally, some are hits and some are misses. I encountered quite a few new authors here, though I'm not really eager to follow up most of them.The first story, 'Huntress', is by Tamora Pierce. It wasn't really an encouraging start, for me. The mythological references could be interesting, but the whole idea of the story is that a goddess comes along and punishes some teenagers who were killing people by... killing them. This could've been well-played, with a bit more expansion -- a bit more attention to detail, like discussion of the kind of goddess she is. That goddesses can be both kind and cruel isn't a new idea, either, and there was a bit of it in there, but there was very little judgement of the eye-for-an-eye mentality, and Pierce's author's note suggested her complete acceptance of it.'Unwrapping', by Nina Kiriki Hoffman, has some nice imagery and such, but doesn't really go deep.'The Real Thing', by Alison Goodman, is more SFish than the first two. Very much from an already established world, but I caught on quickly enough, and rather enjoyed it. I'd like to read more by her. I liked the positive approach to sexuality, too -- something about it sat right with me.Charles de Lint's story, 'Little (Grrl) Lost', kind of annoyed me. It was basically The Borrowers, only modernised. And not as charming.Diana Wynne Jones' story, 'I'll Give You My Word', was quite fun, and funny. Perhaps a little predictable, for her, but cute. And I learnt some new words!I liked 'In The House of the Seven Librarians', by Ellen Klages. Probably because I love the idea of being raised in a library. There isn't much more to it than that, I suppose, but I still liked it.Sharon Shinn's 'Wintermoon Wish' is quite interesting because it deals with a fantasy equivalent of Christmas. Maybe it's mostly fandom where this kind of thing tends to go wrong, but writers who remember that Christmas isn't universal are awesome. I didn't like the characters much, though.'The Wizards of Perfil', by Kelly Link, reminded me of something else. Maybe Ursula Le Guin, but I had that feeling a couple of times with this anthology. Anyway, it's quite enjoyable, but the characters are not terribly lovable at first, if at all.'Jack O'Lantern', by Patricia A. McKillip, was kind of interesting, but I wished it'd worked more on the sense of the uncanny. It wasn't memorable.Carol Emshwiller's 'Quill' was a bit different; something about the narrative threw me, and the ending was unsatisfying.Francesca Lia Block's 'Blood Roses' just struck me as mostly pointless. Stories transcribed straight from dreams do not tend to thrill me. What seems deep and meaningful in a dream isn't always when you wake up.Kara Dalkey's 'Hives' is kind of interesting, but at the same time it's nothing new. The old themes of Techonology! Is! Scary! and teenage girls are mean.Alan Dean Foster's 'Perception' is fun mostly because of the flip at the end. Haaa.'The House on the Planet' by Tanith Lee could maybe have been tighter -- something about it was off. The three threads seemed superficially, not deeply, linked. I did like it, though.I liked Pamela Dean's 'Cousins' quite a lot -- again, it reminded me of Ursula Le Guin's writing, somehow. I liked the culture there, woven into the story.'What Used To Be Good Still Is', by Emma Bull, is really enjoyable. I like the central idea, and the narrator was kind of perfect for it -- I didn't like him as much as I liked the central character, but he wasn't awful, either, and he was just the right level of understanding/not understanding.As a whole, I enjoyed the anthology: I should read more anthologies, because I like the way they collect together lots of authors. I suppose I treat them a little bit like tester pots.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Layne Fowler

    I definitely recommend this book to anybody! Especially if they like the Sci-Fi Genre. This book isn't just one storyline though it is a collection of Sci-Fi short stories. You will be captivated by stories like "In The House Of The Seven Librarians" where a young orphan girl is raised by seven librarians and surprisingly a magic library. Or if you want it to have more Science Fiction in it, read a story like "The Real Thing." In that story the girl protagonist Joss and the human race lives sid I definitely recommend this book to anybody! Especially if they like the Sci-Fi Genre. This book isn't just one storyline though it is a collection of Sci-Fi short stories. You will be captivated by stories like "In The House Of The Seven Librarians" where a young orphan girl is raised by seven librarians and surprisingly a magic library. Or if you want it to have more Science Fiction in it, read a story like "The Real Thing." In that story the girl protagonist Joss and the human race lives side by side with aliens, but not everybody sees them as equals. Joss does and actually has a best friend name Mavkel who doesn't really approve of Joss' new boyfriend Kyle. So Mavkel tells Joss this and she pushes him away, telling him to get out. But when a romantic midnight walk turns bad, and Joss needs Mavkel more than ever will he come to her? You'll have to read "The Real Thing" in Sharyn November's amazing book "Firebirds Rising"!

  9. 5 out of 5

    kvon

    Short stories (by favorite authors).Most memorable to me were Jones 'I'll give you my word', Klages 'In the House of Seven Librarians' (great title too!), Link 'The wizards of Perfil' (which felt like a Jones story), and Bull 'What used to be good still is'. Short stories (by favorite authors).Most memorable to me were Jones 'I'll give you my word', Klages 'In the House of Seven Librarians' (great title too!), Link 'The wizards of Perfil' (which felt like a Jones story), and Bull 'What used to be good still is'.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    When I stumbled upon the first Firebirds anthology, I fell in love and waited patiently for a sequel. After several years, I've finally returned to find Firebirds Rising. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy Rising half as much as I enjoyed its predecessor. Perhaps the reason for this is that the tales in Firebirds were more fantasy, whereas the tales in this more recent volume are much closer to scifi, which I am not as comfortable with.Despite my disappointment, Firebirds Rising is still a pretty go When I stumbled upon the first Firebirds anthology, I fell in love and waited patiently for a sequel. After several years, I've finally returned to find Firebirds Rising. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy Rising half as much as I enjoyed its predecessor. Perhaps the reason for this is that the tales in Firebirds were more fantasy, whereas the tales in this more recent volume are much closer to scifi, which I am not as comfortable with.Despite my disappointment, Firebirds Rising is still a pretty good read. Although stories like Huntress, Blood Roses and Quill fall flat, the volume also includes wonderful, fun stories like Hives, Wintermoon Wish, The Wizards of Perfil, and my personal favorite, In The House Of The Seven Librarians. Even though I rated it a mere 3, I would still recommend this book because it serves as a sort of YA fantasy/scifi "sampler"- allowing readers to experience wellknown and up and coming writers in the genre and decide which ones they like.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Robyn

    Like many books of short stories, this is a mixed bag, some are wonderful, some are fairly forgettable. However, I think that the breadth of subjects covered really does have something for everyone who's a fan of the genre. However, the clear stand out is really the story "Hives", and years after the fact this is the one that stuck with me, the one I really remember. Hives has a great premise and a character with a strong voice; it provides thrills and chills in it's short time, and even if ever Like many books of short stories, this is a mixed bag, some are wonderful, some are fairly forgettable. However, I think that the breadth of subjects covered really does have something for everyone who's a fan of the genre. However, the clear stand out is really the story "Hives", and years after the fact this is the one that stuck with me, the one I really remember. Hives has a great premise and a character with a strong voice; it provides thrills and chills in it's short time, and even if every other story in the book were complete garbage, "Hives" would have redeemed it. However, the other stories in the book aren't garbage, and even the worst of them is a decent light read. The good thing about an anthology series is that if you hit a story that doesn't work for you, you can just move on to something else. In this book, the stories are different enough that doing so is definitely a reward.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

    I like collections of this sort as a way of trying out new authors - especially in fantasy. Now I find I'm liking all the authors I've always liked, just reading their stories - and not always new ones. I liked this book because so many were new - only two stories previously read (or at least read and remembered). Best story this read - and that doesn't mean I liked it best, necessarily, but it was the most memorable, most interesting:Hives - the story itself felt very William Gibson, if he wrot I like collections of this sort as a way of trying out new authors - especially in fantasy. Now I find I'm liking all the authors I've always liked, just reading their stories - and not always new ones. I liked this book because so many were new - only two stories previously read (or at least read and remembered). Best story this read - and that doesn't mean I liked it best, necessarily, but it was the most memorable, most interesting:Hives - the story itself felt very William Gibson, if he wrote YA fantasy with female heroines. The idea of technology as it is used, not what it was intended to be used for, is an interesting one and well integrated with the sometimes complete loneliness of being a young adult, to being lost in schools that have to focus on maintaining some sort of order and not educating, to the cruelty of youth. The story itself was a bit uncomfortable, as was the question of exactly what justice is.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Donatellia Austin

    Overall the stories were okay, I am always a DWJ fan and so I enjoyed her story, although I would agree with many other reviews that its a slightly smaller grade level. Many of these stories feel like they are a part of longer works, and not really their own story. Short stories can be hard to write, much harder than longer works of genre fiction, so I think many of these well-written authors might have flaked on the creating of short stories without much thought to actually creating a short sto Overall the stories were okay, I am always a DWJ fan and so I enjoyed her story, although I would agree with many other reviews that its a slightly smaller grade level. Many of these stories feel like they are a part of longer works, and not really their own story. Short stories can be hard to write, much harder than longer works of genre fiction, so I think many of these well-written authors might have flaked on the creating of short stories without much thought to actually creating a short story on its own, without the need for a long sense of fiction.Some of these stories are also hard to understand or see the settings, and many of the main characters are more flat than they should be. Granted though, were some gems in this collection. "Wintermoon""I'll Give you my word""Hives" "Quill" (although I swore they were all chickens at first) "Cousins"

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alayna Payton

    I originally bought this book because it had a story by Sharon Shinn and even better the story was a continuation of a book I love. So I thought I'd read this and hopefully find a few more authors that I'd fall in love with. Sadly this was not the case. The only story I really enjoyed was of course Wintermoon Wish lol. A few others I thought were very mildly interesting. But mostly the stories were either to short that I wasnt even really sure what was going on. Or too long that I felt for the a I originally bought this book because it had a story by Sharon Shinn and even better the story was a continuation of a book I love. So I thought I'd read this and hopefully find a few more authors that I'd fall in love with. Sadly this was not the case. The only story I really enjoyed was of course Wintermoon Wish lol. A few others I thought were very mildly interesting. But mostly the stories were either to short that I wasnt even really sure what was going on. Or too long that I felt for the abundance of pages the story wasn't about anything at all. I understand that these were short stories but had they been full length novels, I still think I would have been bored and probably wouldn't have finished them.

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