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Elemental Magic: All-New Tales of the Elemental Masters (Elemental Masters #8.5)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  939 Ratings  ·  71 Reviews
This is an anthology of stories in the Elemental Masters series.
Paperback, 311 pages
Published December 4th 2012 by DAW Books
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In a break from the annual Valdemar compilation, the short story collection that Mercedes Lackey edited for 2012 is set in her Elemental Masters world. Lackey's delightful Elemental Masters novels are fairy tale retellings set in the early 20th century UK, with a fire, air, earth, and water based magic system. The stories by other authors here are enjoyable in their own right, but feel less embedded in Lackey's Elemental Masters world than is usual for the Valdemar compilations. With the Valdema ...more
Dec 02, 2013 M rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2013
These were okay. The problem of the original series for me was that there seemed to be quite a few inconsistencies in what the elementals did, and the creatures and what their constraints were. These also had the same problem. But the main issue I had this anthology was that it seemed to be a collection of fanfiction, and a rather half-hearted attempt at that. Most of the stories seemed quite shallow and unrealistic (obviously beyond the fact that magic and elementals are fantastical). That said ...more
Kathy Davie
Apr 10, 2015 Kathy Davie rated it liked it
Shelves: history, military, fantasy
Fifteen short stories revolving around Lackey's theme from her Elemental Masters series none of which are in a time period later than 1919.

I have to confess that I found these stories to be uneven in quality. A range of twos to fives. Unless you have a passion for several of the authors, consider carefully before you spend the money to buy this collection. The way authors in general are going, they'll release these stories again. Hopefully, in a group that merits the purchase.

I don't see any of
This anthology is... okay. I really wanted to like it, because I enjoy the Elemental Masters series, but the stories were uneven in quality and the coherency somewhat-- lacking.

Stories I enjoyed:
The Collector: a wonderfully spooky exploration of the darker side of Elemental Magic.
Makana: Somebody actually wrote a story with a POC hero who kicks ass! Damn. Set in Hawai'i. Can't say how accurate it is, but I enjoyed the fact that it, y'know, existed.
I Have Heard the Mermaids Singing: Nicely judge
Apr 22, 2014 Colleen rated it liked it
This anthology is a set of short magic stories set in the Lackey Elemental Masters world, with the two guiding boundaries of a focus on the Greek elements (plus spirit) and nothing more modern than 1919. Interestingly, while one character focuses on vengeance, none of the stories have the main character as the antagonist, the evil archanist, or the corrupted one. They all have heroes, heroines, and upstanding warriors for the good. Not that I'm complaining, mind you. It's a Misty Lackey book. Th ...more
Mar 19, 2013 Jen rated it it was ok
This wasn't a full novel of the Elemental Masters, more of a taster or teaser. This book had many short stories, probably too many as they are REALLY short stories. Most of them were interesting, but just too short. Just as you were getting into the fell of things, it ended. One of my favorites was the retelling of Rapunzel, but I really think it could have benefitted from a few more pages. Really, all of the stories could have.
Feb 07, 2013 Gayle rated it really liked it
A book of short stories by various authors all written on a theme created by Mercedes Lackey, all involving elemental masters. I liked the stories very much. The only problem I have is that I felt that most of them were only introductions and could have developed into SO much more. I owuld love to have these authors go further with the characters they created.
This was more of a 3.5. I found this anthology more of a mixed bag then the usual Valdemar anthology. Maybe because I am more accustomed to different voices in that world. I can say that I enjoyed the contributions by those authors who are already on my auto=buy list and might have to check out a few of the others.
Dec 03, 2012 Joseph rated it really liked it
A fine collection of Elemental Masters shorts stories. One problem I did have with some though were that they were too short, they were so good I wanted to read more. They were great beginnings and ok endings, they could have been starts to a fine novel of their own.
Jeremy Preacher
May 20, 2015 Jeremy Preacher rated it liked it
I usually like the Valdemar collections, so when this collection of Elemental Masters stories popped up (with a very familiar list of contributors) I snagged it. But the problem is, I don't like the Elemental Masters series nearly so well as I do Valdemar, and I found this proportionately less charming.

There are some good pieces, certainly. Jody Lynn Nye's "Air of Mystery" was delightful, and Elizabeth A Vaughan's "Stones and Feathers" read like the first chapter of a book I would have been happ
Nov 19, 2015 Amber rated it liked it
some of the stories seemed more like half thoughts. The really good ones made up for it though.
Okay, maybe that's too short. i really enjoy Mercedes lackey, and I always have. I've known snobs to turn up their noses and sneer, but since those Scheherazade's would have been dead in the first hour I don't take them all that seriously. Lackey is a good storyteller and creates engaging worlds and characters. which is why she has a huge fan base. which is why the mediocre stories were such a let down
Amy Junkins
While the stories themselves were fair, this again reinforces to me why I dislike short stories. There's never enough room for satisfying character OR plot development.
Oct 07, 2014 Foggygirl rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-read
I liked some stories more than others but on the whole an excellent anthology, Mercedes should make this Elemental anthology collection a regular thing.
Jan 04, 2013 Emily rated it liked it
A solid collection. This is an interesting world with so many opportunities to grow in different directions. The authors certainly had fun with it!
Nov 06, 2012 Larisa rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed reading every story, which is unusual for an anthology.
Mar 04, 2014 Wench rated it did not like it
Shelves: fantasy, ebook, dnf, 2014, library
I'm not sure how I missed that this was an anthology, but if is known I would have bothered borrowing it. Turns out I generally love things actually written by Lackey, and hate things written by other people in whatever world of hers they're playing in. WELP.

I got about halfway through this. Nothing is terrible, and there certainly wasn't anything as horribly triggering as in the last Lackey anthology I mistakenly picked up, but nothing is really GOOD, either. The stories are very flat and simp
The Bookwyrm's Hoard
Review originally published at The Bookwyrm's Hoard.

Elemental Magic is an anthology of short stories set in Lackey's popular Elemental Masters universe. Unlike the novels in the series, which are all set in Britain between 1870 and 1919, the contributing authors were not limited to any historical period or locale. Thus, there are stories set in the ancient world, pre- and post-colonial Hawaii, post-Civil War U.S., and the fledgling Canada, to name a few.

Only one story directly references any o
Feb 14, 2013 Stef rated it liked it
I do not often read short stories because they do not seem complete enough for me. However, there are a couple authors I will make exceptions for, Charles De Lint and Mercedes Lackey.

Lackey edits this collection of Elemental Masters' tales written by some of the big writers in Scifi and Fantasy. There are seventeen original stories, and she even writes the last story herself. I was led to believe from the cover of the book and the write up this book got that the authors would be adapting charac
Jan 02, 2013 TheCosyDragon rated it really liked it
This review has been crossposted from my blog at The Cosy Dragon . Please head there for more in-depth reviews by me, which appear on a timely schedule.

This is an anthology that fits into Mercedes Lackey's Elemental Masters series. There are 17 short stories, and I have given a quick review of each one.

A Song of the Sea - It fitted in well with the continuity of Lackey's novels and it was good because of the historical references scattered throughout it (that I could actually recognise).

The Fire
Kristin Taggart
I don't use star ratings, so please read my review!

(Description nicked from B&

“Among Mercedes Lackey’s many novels, few are as critically acclaimed and beloved as those about the Elemental Masters. The novels in this series are loosely based on classic fairy tales, and take place in a fantasy version of turn-of-the-century London, where magic is real and Elemental Masters control the powers of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. Now other authors join Mercedes Lackey to add their own special
Anne Langston
Jan 18, 2014 Anne Langston rated it liked it
I would actually give this 3 and a half's an anthology of short stories set in the Elemental Masters world, so of course a bit of a mixed bag. I enjoyed most of them. Tanya Huff's story is, I think, my favorite. I like that the stories broke out of the late Victorian/Edwardian England timeset, and aren't all based on fairy tales (a device I like, but which can be cloying in the wrong hands). And not one of the stories, even Ms. Lackey's, copied passages from previous books. (And if yo ...more
Michelle Fobbs
Jun 18, 2015 Michelle Fobbs rated it liked it
I'm a big fan of the full-length novels in this series, and of short stories as well, so I was expecting to be wowed by this collection.

It was good, satisfying stuff, but I wished for more cameos from the books and generally feel like I could have written similar or better quality stuff. Maybe I should try...

So, worth a read by hardcore fans, but don't have sky high expectations.
An interesting collection. The stories are overall rather good. There were a few I would definitely like to see more of - The Collector by Ron Collins, Makana by Fiona Payton and War to the Knife by Rosemary Edgehill.

The main con that stands out is that despite the lack of limitations (authors could write anywhere within history up to the 1900s) most of the stories still took place in what felt to be around the same era Lackey's books are set in, with primarily white characters. There is one st
Jun 12, 2015 Lexen rated it did not like it
Ugh. This was a big waste of my time. I was excited because I thought I might see stories of my favorite Elemental Masters stories. But these were all farmed out to other authors, and they were all far too short. Many did not fit well into her world, and several were simply poorly-written. Not worth reading.
Tim Hicks
Mar 04, 2014 Tim Hicks rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
OK, I don't know Lackey's Elemental Masters series.
Now I don't want to.
The stories in the first half - that's as far as I got - were sort of nice, I guess.
Like rice crackers when you wanted fresh baguette with butter.
Soap bubbles.
Excalibur Snape
Apr 04, 2014 Excalibur Snape rated it liked it
Shelves: april-2014
This is a book of 17 short interesting stories.
They are entertaining while reading them once read though you forget them until you read them again.
I do find the world interesting. It is so much like ours except for the magical aspect.
Ron Clayton
Mar 16, 2013 Ron Clayton rated it really liked it
I enjoyed all the stories. It seemed to start out a little slowly because I expected all of the stories to be in London around 1910. However, given elemental master magicians and a white lodge in 1910 London, what would the pre-history have been? Where else in the world would there be magicians and lodges? What would those folks in London do elsewhere in the world? Where would they go and what would they do and why? So I think that it was my own expectations that made the early stories seem like ...more
Dec 16, 2013 Chelsea rated it it was ok
I only enjoyed 3 out of the 17 stories. I have low expectations for short stories in the first place due to there not really being any time for character development but some of these stories had none at all. one of these stories used a bunch of words from another language only explaining a couple of them. one even went no where. most of them were mediocre at best. i wouldn't buy it and i wouldnt suggest buying it. i got through this book in one day, not because it was good but because most of t ...more
Mar 14, 2015 Jennifer rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 02, 2014 Amanda rated it it was ok
Uneven in the extreme. Some interesting stories, and other stories that read like their authors had only a passing familiarity with the worldbuilding Lackey has been doing - which is a shame. There's a lot of potential for a good short story collection in this series, but this is not that book.
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Mercedes entered this world on June 24, 1950, in Chicago, had a normal childhood and graduated from Purdue University in 1972. During the late 70's she worked as an artist's model and then went into the computer programming field, ending up with American Airlines in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In addition to her fantasy writing, she has written lyrics for and recorded nearly fifty songs for Firebird Arts &a ...more
More about Mercedes Lackey...

Other Books in the Series

Elemental Masters (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Fire Rose (Elemental Masters, #1)
  • The Serpent's Shadow (Elemental Masters, #2)
  • The Gates of Sleep (Elemental Masters, #3)
  • Phoenix and Ashes (Elemental Masters, #4)
  • The Wizard of London (Elemental Masters, #5)
  • Reserved for the Cat (Elemental Masters, #6)
  • Unnatural Issue (Elemental Masters, #7)
  • Home from the Sea (Elemental Masters, #8)
  • Steadfast (Elemental Masters #9)
  • Blood Red (Elemental Masters, #10)

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