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The American Fantasy Tradition

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really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  36 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
The ancient tales of long-dead civilizations to the wild success of J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, fantasy has fired our imaginations for as long as there has been story. Whether sweeping sagas of fantastic adventures or cautionary tales told around the campfire, fantasy is deeply woven into the very fabric of humanity, wearing many faces and coming in many flavors. ...more
Paperback, 608 pages
Published September 13th 2003 by Tor Books (first published 2002)
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Jeff
Jun 10, 2014 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I went back and forth between three and four stars on this one. I did like it. It's very long, though, and there are a few stories in there that just didn't grab me. But that's okay, and what you might expect in a short story compilation.

The tales in this volume date all the way back to "Rip Van Winkle," which is the first story in the book. It is divided into three sections, part 1 being "Folk, Tall and Weird Tales." This part also includes "Uncle Remus" stories, which, of course, are delightf
...more
Steven Stimach
Dec 26, 2012 Steven Stimach rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Really, I can't believe the high reviews that people have given to this, frankly, poorly researched anthology. At first presenting his book as an academic anthology through which he hopes to delineate a specific tradition of American fantasy from European fantasy, Thomson, like so many anthologists when they use the term "American," seems to really mean a fantasy tradition of straight white men writing in the United States or Canada. Markedly, there are only four female authors included in the t ...more
Mic Parker
Jun 02, 2015 Mic Parker rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Favorite inclusions: "The Shadow Over Innsmouth" by Lovecraft, "Dead Run" by Greg Bear and "Mrs. Todd's Shortcut" by Stephen King. The last is super memorable, beautiful and eerie.

Also: classics like "Children of the Corn" and "The Yellow Wallpaper."
Suzanne Vincent
Oct 03, 2008 Suzanne Vincent rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a truly incredible collection of American speculative fiction by its best authors. Of the many excellent stories (old and new) I think the one that stood out the most for me was by Harlan Ellison, based on an incident in New York in which a woman was brutally murdered, right out in the open, and no one--NO ONE--did anything about it. No help, not even any calls to the police as it happened. A speculation on the demons who must have been present in the hearts and homes of those who witnes ...more
Matt Hudak
Mar 29, 2007 Matt Hudak rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of literature, horror, sci-fi
Great collection of classic stories - some of which are truly creepy.
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Brian Thomsen was a founding editor of the Questar Science Fiction line of books, and served as managing fiction editor at TSR, Inc.; he also wrote over 30 short stories, and collaborated with Julius Schwartz on Schwartz's autobiography. He also worked as the publisher for TSR's Periodicals Department at one point. He was a consulting editor at Tor Books; as an author he was a Hugo Award nominee.

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