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Elemental: The Tsunami Relief Anthology: Stories of Science Fiction and Fantasy

3.73  ·  Rating Details ·  128 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
In the winter of 2005, after the horrifying natural disaster of the tsunami in Southeast Asia, Alethea Kontis and Steve Savile joined forces to raise money to help the distressed survivors and have created Elemental. They solicited SF and fantasy stories, all new and never published elsewhere, from many of the top writers in the genres today, and received immediate respons ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published May 16th 2006 by Tor Books (first published 2006)
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My favorites, in no particular order:

Joe Haldeman's previously unpublished early "Expedition, with Recipes" about a band of children struggle to find food in a post-apocalytic ruin. (His explanation of how he wrote it was also amusing.)

Eric Nylund's "Butterflies like Jewels" reminded of fantasy from an earlier era (the 1920s? Not sure).

Lynn Flewelling's "Perfection" is remarkably interesting for a story with no action. An old lady architect builds her last and greatest palace.

Nina Hoffman's "S
Jan 28, 2017 Patricia rated it it was amazing
After the horrifying natural disaster of December 2005 tsunami, a group of editors and writers joined forces to raise money to help the survivors and created this book. 100% of the net proceeds went to Save the Children. The authors or editors decided to forgo any payment for their work on this collection of sci-fi and fantasy stories. Truly a wonderful anthology. My favorite stories are "The Last Mortal Man," by Syne Mitchell and "In the Matter of Angels," by Jacqueline Carey. A keeper!!
Jul 10, 2009 Amanda rated it really liked it
Wow! The stories in this book are very, very good. I'm generally not a big fan of science fiction, but only a couple of these short stories were really what I consider to be "science fiction." I honestly liked almost every singe story in the book, but some of them were absolutely amazing. Some made me laugh out loud (which takes a lot--usually reading only provokes me to smile or chuckle, not actually laugh) and some made me tear up. Excellent, excellent writing!
Aug 15, 2007 Tamara rated it it was amazing
This is a great collection of SF/fantasy short stories. And that proceeds helped victims of the Indonesian tsunami is good, too. There were only one or two stories of the whole anthology that I didn't like. A good mix and just the right length to squeeze in a tale or two on break.
Jul 30, 2013 Stefanie rated it really liked it
I've been procrastinating on writing this review because I wanted to address each story individually, and that would take time, and I never have time anymore. Okay, that isn't strictly true, I have lots of time, I just spend most of it these days playing CivV. Like I literally cannot stop. But enough of that.

Though not every story in this anthology was a hit for me, I thought it was very well edited. The collection is eclectic at best- it's more like a random hodge-podge of modern fiction. Some
Report from the Near Future: Crystallization :/
And Tomorrow and :)
Abductio ad Absurdum :(
In the Matter of Fallen Angels :/
Tiger in the Night :(
The strange case of Jared Spoon, who went to pieces for love. :(
The Solipsist at Dinner :(
The Wager :(
Expedition, with Recipes :(
Tough Love :/
Chanting the Violet Dog Town: A Tale of Noreela :/
Butterflies Like Jewels :)
Perfection :)
The Compound :(
Sea Child: A Tale of Dune :(
Moebius Trip :(
The Run to Hardscrabble Station :(
The Last Mortal Man :)
The Double E
Fangirl Musings
I purchased this book solely for the short story, The Wager. I'm a completest when it comes to collecting all works by Sherrilyn Kenyon, and found the very short story about Thomas Malory - the author of the Arthurian tales - very fun! I adored how Sherri worked this in as an interesting tidbit, and I'm extremely curious as to whether or not Thomas will come into play in a later book.

As for the other stories, I might one day read them, but I have no immediate plans to do so. I rate this book 5
Jul 11, 2016 Addie rated it really liked it
It's hard to rate an anthology such as this one as a whole. The overall theme is dark and sad..and some of the stories shine, some are okay, and a rare few were tedious for me. I had a hard time finishing this because there was no ongoing story to get back to that pulled me in, which is something I find I usually deal with in anthologies. Since I have to rate all these stories together, I say 4 stars because most of the stories were enjoyable!
Jul 19, 2009 Lauren rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
An anthology of stories, I could pick and choose which to read and which I didn't. I chose to read all of them and found that I liked some more than others, as one would expect. Several of the stories took a while to get through, not because of the slightly longer length (which some were a great deal longer than others), but more because the premise of the story didn't really appeal to me, such as war-time. And so, I give this book 4 stars.
I enjoyed this collection but unfortunately too many of the stories were set in universes already explored in other books for me to enjoy them. I find it really difficult to read a story set alongside other books I haven't read, because I feel as though I'm missing something. I had to skip those, but luckily there were enough self-contained stories to keep me interested during the long process of moving. It made for a great book to read during short breaks of lugging boxes and furniture.
Mar 27, 2008 Cindywho rated it liked it
Various authors contributed to this benefit anthology. Unfortunately some of the stories seemed to be dug out of a drawer rather than responding thematically to the disaster. My favorites were the first and the last stories and I found some new authors of interest. I only gave up on one story (I'm not a fan of detailed military campaigns) I was reminded of how much I like Nina Kiriki Hoffman.
Dec 14, 2011 Deidre rated it it was ok
Shelves: anthologies, fantasy
I know this was done for Tsunami Relief, but the stories were a complete mish-mash. Some I couldn't read, others I couldn't stop reading. They seemed to get better towards the end and Sea Air by Niki Kiriki Hoffman was among the best. I have not read her, but now I will. That one was a 5
Rena Sherwood
Oct 07, 2015 Rena Sherwood rated it liked it
Nice mix of stories but some are very flat or downright confusing. Not impressed with the cover artwork (what little there is of it.)
Nov 03, 2015 Brian rated it really liked it
Just a fun anthology full of mish-mashed stories. Read it at a pace of 5 per week and enjoyed them thoroughly!
Natalie Williams
Jun 03, 2015 Natalie Williams rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed some top-notch stories by a good number of story-tellers . . . great way to find out who's work you may want to read more of.
Dec 30, 2013 Fury13 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, anthologies
Only read:

The Wager by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Jul 15, 2016 Amanda rated it liked it
I only read Kinley MacGregors story, but still would have wanted more background on the character.
Karen Desmond
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"A veritable badass fairy princess." --Jim Butcher

"Alethea Kontis IS fairy tales." --Jim C. Hines, author of Libriomancer

"Alethea Kontis: Awesome, racks up award nominations, wears tiaras." --SF author Ferrett Steinmetz

"I want to live in [Alethea's] head because I think that might be the most interesting place in the world!!!!" --Ellen Oh, author of Prophecy

"Alethea Kontis, the woman who writes li
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