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3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  1,006 ratings  ·  23 reviews
Theatre of Cruelty - Terry Pratchett; How Nuth Would Have Practised His Art upon the Gnoles - Lord Dunsany; Hell Hath No Fury - John Collier; The Twonky - Henry Kuttner; A Great Deal of Power - Eric Frank Russell; Doodad - Ray Bradbury; Not By Its Cover - Philip K. Dick; The Rule of Names - Ursula K. Le Guin; Mythological Beast - Stephen Donaldson; The Adventure of the Sno...more
Paperback, 398 pages
Published 1997 by Talpress
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This book of short stories has some of my favorite authors (Pratchett, LeGuin, Douglass Adams), and some of the best known, most established science fiction and fantasy writers (Asimov, Philip K. Dick, Clarke, Lewis, Wells, to name just a few) yet I found it highly irritating and completely unsatisfying. I believe the editor, Haining was trying to make a compendium of every science fiction writer that had ever been considered witty or clever, which is great, but... jeeze, it was painful to read....more
An anthology of "humorous" science-fiction/fantasy stories. It includes "The Twonky." Because alien mind-control devices killing people is hilarious. I mean, "The Twonky" is an okay story, but it's a "comedy" only through comparison with the incredibly dull and humorless backdrop that is mainstream SF. Half of the stories here were genuinely funny, and half were just...stories told with some sardonic twist. All the stories here are from significant figures in the genre, so it serves as a good hi...more
A book of light short stories, although, as I'm struggling to read at the moment, the book has taken me weeks rather than hours to get through. The good? Well, I don't want to provide spoilers, so won't, but Terry Pratchett's 'Theatre Of Cruelty' was a great opener. My other favourites, and I'm going to limit myself to two, were Fredric Brown's 'The Ring Of Hans Carvel' with it's lewd but hilarious punchline and Asimov's 'Playboy and the Slime God'. I love the fact that Brown got away with this...more
Very wide range of light short stories, so everyone will probably find something just for himself. The ones that made themselves memorable for me are the following:
- P. K. Dick's story about the wub's skin and its immortalizing qualities (nice choice of experimental "wubby" texts, e. g. Lucretius)
- F. Austey's epic of how a lawyer transported to the world of glass ball saved the princess by defeating the dragon with rat repellent
- A. Davidson's deploring the irreparable loss of the last livin...more
Collection of humorous fantasy and sci fi, including such heavy hitters as C.S. Lewis, Arthur C. Clarke, Kurt Vonnegut, Terry Pratchett, and Issac Asimov, to name just a few.

Good stories, as you'd imagine, from such great names. The humor stays smart, thoughtful, with just a tinge of blue here and there. The only complaint I might have is that Ursula Le Guin is the only female author in the bunch. But honestly, everything in it is so good, I can forgive the editor this oversight.
I enjoyed this collection of humorous fantasy stories. Two of my favorites were "Doodad" by Ray Bradbury about a man who learns too late not to underestimate seemingly useless items and "The Rule of Names" by Ursula K. Le Guin about a mysterious wizard and a knight.
Overall? Meh.
There is one great story. A Good Knight's Work, by Robert Bloch, is original and hilarious. Most of the others are just silly. Mostly a waste of time but worth picking up just to read Bloch's story.
Simon Deimel
The stories in this book are full of humor and unusual ideas. There are so many classic authors contained. Fantasy and science fiction do not have to be serious all the time. I really enjoyed it.
Foršo stāstu proporcija bija jūtami lielāka, kā biju gaidījis. Pārsteidzoši daudz arī černuhas pilnu gabalu, bet humora izjūtas ir atšķirīgas un tā. Galvenais, ka garlaikoties nesanāca.
Some of the stories in this collection offer a different version of the wizard image,it may take awhile to make the connection and then it's:"Aha,I get it!"Fun to read.
Several stories are fun and funny, though others did nothing for me at all. Pretty common for a collection of short stories.
Tanvir Muntasim
A very good collection of comic fantasy stories, introducing to a lot of out of print classic stuff.
Has some funny stories and some not so funny. Roughly half are funny, so it's a pretty mixed bag.
Funny and poignant short stories from many authors with fantastical themes and smidgens of sci-fi.
I tried and tried to read this to conclusion but I couldn't. It just did not hold my interest.
Nice collection, although I was disappointed that it contained science-fiction as well as fantasy.
I am not a huge fan of short stories, but these were amusing quick reads, perfect for the bus.
Haiku Reviews
Got this for Pratchett
Learned about some new authors
Must check those guys out
Martin Willoughby
Some good, some indifferent, but interesting and worth reading.
A collection of fantasy short stories, good, bad and indifferent.
A collection of moderately humorous/absurd short stories.
Steef Jacobson
good mix of stories, some I might have missed
Serena Cellitti
Serena Cellitti marked it as to-read
Apr 18, 2014
Sarah Adamson
Sarah Adamson marked it as to-read
Apr 18, 2014
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Carl Geiberger marked it as to-read
Apr 17, 2014
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Peter Alexander Haining (April 2, 1940 – November 19, 2007) was a British journalist, author and anthologist who lived and worked in Suffolk. Born in Enfield, Middlesex, he began his career as a reporter in Essex and then moved to London where he worked on a trade magazine before joining the publishing house of New English Library.

Haining achieved the position of Editorial Director before becoming...more
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