Read ’em all or just pick one!
The Children of Hamelin by Dale Bailey
This story is artful. The grief and sorrow is expertly communicated, the imagery perfect. This is definitely one of my favorite pieces of short fiction I’ve read this year.
About Fairies by Pat Murphy
There are too many things to love about this story. The way the author sets the scene, the manner in which death comes alive in the story (no pun intended), even the way she anthropomorphizes the cats is genius. The world feels different after you read this story.
The Married Andersons by Peter Swanson
This story came out in the first issue of Nine: A Journal of Imaginative Fiction. You’ll need a subscription to read it, but it’s only $5. For a new publication, they have attracted some great authors. This story in particular carries a lot of sadness with it. I tend to be more drawn to the painful stories (easy to guess from the line-up in this post), but I think this one has enough interesting elements to be for everyone. If you get the issue, I also loved Clear Skies in Pixieland by Kristin Janz and there’s a story by Ken Liu, which is never to be missed.