Paper Cities: An Anthology of Urban Fantasy Rothdas book review RSS
2.0 Stars

The title of this anthology is wildly inaccurate; the stories inside aren't so much urban fantasy as they are a collection of fantasy stories that happen in a city, or nearby a city, or off the coast of a city, or in the ruins of a city, or just fairly near a place that at one time might have had 100 or more people. Similarly, you can ignore the bloviating introduction section that tries to make some deeper connection between the various stories and cities in general. The sophmore English major who wrote it should be ashamed. Also on the shame-list are most of the authors in the second half of the book; most of these stories stink of the MFA and try and fail to be artistic. Reading these stories was like watching one hurdler after another leaping, and then tangling in their hurdle and crashing head long into the ground. There were however some good stories in the first half, things were you read them and you are like yes, I need that in my RPG campaign. The good ones were:

  • Sammarynda Deep - Best worldbuilding is best, good writing
  • The Funeral, Ruined - worldbuilding!
  • Andretto Walks the Kings way - lightly enjoyable and well written
  • Courting the Lady Scythe - predictable, but neat worldbuilding
  • The Bumbelty's Marble - worldbuilding
  • The One that Got Away - unicorns
  • The Title of this Story - well written

I would flat out skip the other stories though.