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Under The Mountain

Reviewing books since 2010. Obsessive dystopia fan.

The Poison Eaters: and Other Stories

The Poison Eaters and Other Stories - Holly Black You know what I love the most about Stephen King? His short stories! So I was pretty excited to learn that Holly Black has done some, not enough Authors do them these days. The Poison Eaters is a compilation of short stories (most of which have appeared in other Anthologies), all in the fantasy genre. In here you can expect a whole host of fantasy creatures - werewolves, unicorns, elves, Vampires, the Devil and Wolverine. Yes, really, even has a cigar. The stories are quite varied too - The Poison Eaters, the last in the book, is more of a Fairy Story, a touch of romance is added in The Coat of Stars and some Fae try and get pregnant in 'Going Ironside'. The end up with a drug addiction.

I'm actually tied for what my favourite stories is. I loved the concept Paper Cuts Scissors, where you meet Wolverine and various other storybook characters, but The Poison Eaters was pretty damn good and a breathtaking ending that left me wanting more.

Of course, one major pull to buy this for a lot of Holly fans is The Land of Hearts Desire, where you get to meet the characters from Tithe again. I didn't enjoy the story as much as the others, I felt that it dragged a little. One thing I did love in this however is that there's a couple of gay relationships. Not many YA authors seem to be willing to explore this idea, sticking to what's safe but I find the ones that do are some of the best Authors.

If you read a few other Holly Black novels, throughout this you'll find a feeling of familiarity - many elements in this can be linked to books such as Tithe and Spiderwick. I hope that she'll write another short story compilation sometime, this one was amazing.