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Hellebore & Rue: Tales of Queer Women and Magic

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  53 ratings  ·  19 reviews
The essence of fantasy is magic and the folklore of women has often dwelt on the innumerable powers they possess. Magic that heals, magic that destroys, magic that saves their community. All these elements and more can be found in the queer women of Hellebore & Rue. These lesbians shape their worlds, their wants and needs, and, most important, their destinies. Here are ...more
Paperback, 238 pages
Published May 5th 2011 by Lethe Press (first published February 1st 2011)
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The Warrior's Path by Catherine M. WilsonA Journey of the Heart by Catherine M. WilsonA Hero's Tale by Catherine M. WilsonThe Dark Wife by Sarah DiemerSword of the Guardian by Merry Shannon
Lesbian Fantasy
34th out of 118 books — 80 voters
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2011 Rainbow Awards
90th out of 103 books — 33 voters

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Community Reviews

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Warren Rochelle
Hellebore—black hellebore (the most appropriate for a witch’s garden)—according to some sources, was used in the flying ointment. Other uses include the healing of mental and emotional illness and in exorcisms, and to increase intelligence, for protection, and for invisibility. It is a baneful herb, and should never be eaten and is highly toxic. “Wear gloves when handling it.”

Leaves of rue relieve headaches and when worn around the neck, aids in recuperating from illness and acts as a ward again
Jarla Tangh
Mar 06, 2011 Jarla Tangh rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fanatsy Lovers
Hellebore and Rue
Drollerie Press

Naturally, whenever I read a work of fiction, I am longing to be transported. I want to love what's going on and to love whomever it's happening to. Editors know this and the best of them patiently sift through hours of preternatural wordage in order to yield a suitable harvest. I bow to the wisdom of Joselle Vanderhooft and Catherine Lundoff.

Twelve tales of women loving women and their magic brought me the required ensorcellment. Milleus ranged from a slight
Hellebore & Rue is an anthology of "tales of queer women and magic", both of which is delivers. There's a lot of fascinating other worlds in this collection, and not one that I was totally turned off or bored by -- there were some I liked better than others, of course: Personal Demons had a very solid punch at the end, and The Windskimmer totally intrigued me. I could have wanted more from some of them, whole novels written in those worlds, but that's obviously not a criticism.

The collection
This entertaining collection of stories centers on sorceresses, be they the fantasy sort of our childhood, full-on Wiccan or something entirely new. Over the centuries, lesbians and witches have been associated as one in the same, often leading to the accused’s demise. And I think Hellebore & Rue subtly explores what makes that association so threatening.

In H&R the magic is sometimes organic and mundane and other times powerful and heroic instead of stereotypically evil. (Well, except fo
(Originally posted @ CSI:Librarian)

It took me awhile though to get through this book because I’m not really much of a short story reader. Happily, I found this anthology to be wonderful, different, and full of women dealing with magical forces without being solely defined by their sexual orientation. For the most part, the collection flowed from one tale to the next in a really great way too.

The stories that that really stood out to me were “Personal Demons” by Jean Marie Ward, “The Windskimmer
So after the Canadian Postal strike I FINALLY received this book through the giveaways yesterday. Wanna know how much I loved it? I stayed up ALL night and finished it! I mean, I got maybe an hour of sleep before coming in to work this morning. I'm really happy that I entered for this giveaway, as it's not usually a book that would interest me (I'm not that big into short stories, they're not long enough for me) but there was something about the title that just drew me in. I think it was karma o ...more
Jennifer Tran
I won this in a first reads goodreads giveaway. First of all I would like to say, thank you for giving me a chance to win this book because this book was a in a genre of books that I have never read before. The first thing I noticed was the cover, the woman's hair on the cover has a bunch of flowers all over it, it really made the whole cover pop out.

By the way this book is more like of a bunch of short stories put together in one book. I am on the first short story right now and its called "Co
Sacchi Green
The writing in this book was outstanding, without even taking into consideration my own story here (written by my alter-ego Connie Wilkins) at all. In fact, when I was co-editing Heiresses of Russ 2012: the Year's Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction for Lethe Press, I seriously considered many of these stories for inclusion, and ended up choosing Lisa Nohealani Morton's "And Out of the Strong Came Forth Sweetness."
Dec 27, 2010 Catherine rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Our new anthology! Due out in early 2011.
The authors did a terrific job - we're very pleased with the results and think you will be too.
Mim J
May 24, 2013 Mim J rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people who are looking for some more queer ladies in their fantasy reading
(The rating is probably more like... 3.5 stars? The fact that we have no half star option is an endless source of woe for me, but alas.)

I love short stories. I love queer ladies. I love magical nonsense. I think you can see where this is going? The second I stumbled upon this book I decided that oh yes, it was definitely something I wanted to read, aaaaaand promptly didn't read it for like two years - a serious mistake, which I only got around to rectifying now. Which is a shame, because this is
I love reading short stories if just to find a new author to read. While this book is short stories about lesbians in the paranormal. Their sexuality was not in the for front of the stories. The relationships were "normal" what I mean by that is that they are there but not shoved in the face, and that is what I think they should be like.

Each story was well written and fit very well into the book. There was not one story that I liked over the others, and there was not one that I did not like. If
these were DELIGHTFUL. i wish this book were twice as long.
Three stars is a good rating for an anthology. Anthologies are always mixed bags. I particularly liked "Personal Demons" by Jean Marie Ward about the Tantrika who calls on the Medicine Buddha because of its ironic ending. I also liked the premise of "A State of Panic" by Rachel Green, but I wanted more than a short story dealing with this concept. Other stories didn't grab me or turned out to be fragments.
I enjoyed most of the short stories contained within this book, some more than others, but with the range of styles presented in this work I do not find that surprising. It is definitely an enjoyable read with a set of different but connected stories that flow well from one into another. I will probably read at least some of the short stories again one day.
I recieved this book through the goodreads giveaway program.

This was a great selection of short stories about "queer" women who possess supernatural abilities of some kind. I really enjoyed all the short stories in this collection. I enjoy short stories with unusual endings and these did not disappoint. A nice weekend read.
Danika at The Lesbrary
Fantastic book for readers looking for stories that just happen to include queer women, instead of coming out stories. Very well written selections.

Full review at The Lesbrary!
I started this one a year ago and decided it would not be a worthwhile 2012 apocalypse without finishing. Favorites were Ruth Sorrell's Counterbalance, Juliet Kemp's Witches Have Cats, and Sky Lit Bargains by Kelly Harmon. One or two didn't quite grab me, but for an anthology those are excellent numbers.
I really enjoyed these short stories. Too much, really. I wanted more and would gladly have read them as novels. As it was, they felt like a tease. It seems I may not be a short story person by nature. I decided to give this anthology 5 stars because it's not the stories' fault that I need more.
Dayna Ingram
I want to review this but I don't have a proper computer/keyboard! Will play catch up in a few months maybe.....
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Vote for Hellebore! 1 6 Nov 21, 2011 12:44PM  
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A dramaturg and something of a lapsed playwright, Vanderhooft works as a freelance journalist, poet and fiction writer. Her work has appeared or will soon appear in print and online in such venues as Aofie’s Kiss, Byzarium, Cabinet des Fées, Jabberwocky, Not One of Us, MYTHIC, Mythic Delirium, Reflections Edge, Star*Line and several others.

To date, she has published seven poetry books: 10,000 Seve
More about JoSelle Vanderhooft...
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