Monday, October 22, 2012

Saladin's Shorts

Saladin Ahmed; Engraved on the Eye (Ridan Publications; 2012; cover art, not indicated)

I can't recall exactly where I came across Saladin Ahmed. Facebook? Twitter? His own website? In any case, the description of his first novel, Throne of the Crescent Moon interested me (and has been reviewed here), so I sought out what he had published already. Alas, not much came up, a few short stories, scattered in online magazines and podcasts, but what I read interested me.

This self-published book (eBook only) gathers all of Saladin's short works under one cover. You have two stories set in the same universe as Throne (Where Virtue Lives and Judgment of Swords and Souls), fun in the Old West with a twist or three (Mister Hadj's Sunset Ride), generally twisted humor (General Akmed's Revenge?, Doctor Diablo Goes Through the Motions, Iron Eyes and the Watered Down World), straight-up dystopian apocalyptic cyberpunk (The Faithful Soldier, Prompted) and straight-up fantasy/horror (Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Iameela).

All polished and interesting and with some nice stylistic or plot twists. All showing a level of sophistication and skill higher than most first-time novelists. Would that he typed faster!

Several of these I had read in my previous searches. Doctor Diable Goes Through the Motions was completely new and is a gem. Supervillains trapped in endless Power Point presentations and having their souls sucked away by endless board meetings. And I want to see a novel set in the universe of Iron Eyes and the Watered Down World. Fritz Leiber and Robert E. Howard are sitting in Valhalla, jealous. Oh, so jealous.

Great stuff here. Get thee to your favorite online eBook retailer and buy!

Made up of: Introduction; Author's Note; Where Virtue Live; Hooves and the Hovel of Abdel Iameela; Judgment of Swords and Souls; Doctor Diablo Goes Through the Motions; General Akmed's Revenge?; Mister Hadj's Sunset Ride; The Faithful Soldier, Prompted; Iron Eyes and the Watered Down World.

Counts as ten (10) entries in 2012: The Year in Shorts.

1 comment:

Paul Weimer said...

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