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Ekaterina and the Firebird

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3.16  ·  Rating details ·  75 ratings  ·  15 reviews
"Ekaterina and the Firebird" is a new Tor.com short story by Abra Staffin-Wiebe.
ebook, 32 pages
Published January 1st 2014 by Tor Books
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3.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  75 ratings  ·  15 reviews


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karen
Aug 29, 2014 rated it liked it
my triumphant return to the free tor short!

i have mixed feelings about this one. i absolutely loved the beginning of it - i thought it was incredibly atmospheric and it really reminded me of the bardugo tor shorts which are far and away my favorite ones so far.

this one is about a protected russian girl named ekaterina who, on the eve of her 14th birthday, spies the mythological firebird outside her window in the dead of night, and follows it in order to receive the good fortune brought by the t
...more
GoldGato
All I want for Christmas are all the great Tor.com illustrated covers. Seriously. Just put them in a beautiful bound volume, hand it to me, and I will be your loyal slave for life. Well, at least for three days.

As to the story, it kept me involved through the chase of the Firebird and then it lost me a bit. Admittedly, I'm not the brightest person in the universe so it could have been my own attention span and not the writing. I'm not of Russian heritage, therefore I did not know about the Fireb
...more
**✿❀  Maki ❀✿**
I'm always up for some retellings of Russian fairytales - especially anything to do with the firebird. Firebirds are special to my heart, because the first "adult" fantasy book I ever read (In The Forests of Serre) was a retelling of the firebird story. Kind of.

This could have been a five-star story, but there were a few too many cultural mistakes in the narrative for it to be perfect (referring to the firebird as a "he" when all firebirds are female). However, the author isn't Russian by birth,
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Maggie Gordon
Apr 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
I am mighty uncomfortable with a story that suggests someone can grow up as a different gender just because one's parents decided to raise you that way... I also didn't find it particularly well-written. The stereotypical rapist in the wood with stilted dialogue was pretty lazy. Overall, a giant meh.
Mandor
Jan 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Laura
Sep 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommended to Laura by: karen
You may read online Tor.com

Opening lines:
Ekaterina couldn’t bear to go to sleep and miss the last moments of what had been a wondrous fourteenth birthday. She sat on the window seat in her bedroom and hugged her knees as the last minutes of the day melted away like spring snow. In the corner of the room, her maid Agafya snored softly.
Ab
An interesting take on Ivan-carevich and the Firebird fairy tale. Although it feels a bit like the firebird part is more of the generic background. Still, the story is fast paced and entertaining.
Katie J Schwartz
When she could see again, she thought at first that the moon had grown brighter. Then the glow above her split, and the Firebird dove down toward her. Its light showed her that she sat in a towering wild apple tree. To her dazzled eyes, the tree branches appeared to be rimmed in fire.

Very atmospheric and interesting, if a little confusing. It could have used some fleshing out, I think.

Ekaterina and the Firebird by Abra Staffin-Wiebe

Three Stars: Not bad, but not fantastic either. I'll still recom
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Ines
Nov 22, 2017 rated it did not like it
Well, that gender issue could be done better.
Nofuture
Jan 04, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: ekniha, fantasy
Ekaterina je násťročná cérenka, ktorej sa už dvoria voľajaký mládenci. Až na to, že sa jej začne objavovať fénix. Samozrejme to nie je len tak, osud, vyslobodenie a bla bla bla...

Zdĺhavý začiatok, potom to trošku naberie spád... Nie je to márne, mohol by to byť úvod k niečomu zaujímavješiemu a väčšiemu. Aj keď na mna tie ruské reálie v anglickom prevedení pôsobia mierne divne.
Iain
Jan 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Enjoyable take on Russian folklore with a nicely-handled twist that adds depth.
Amy
Jan 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, short-story
Always love reading retellings of fairy tales/legends/folklore I've never heard of before. This one's a Russian fairy tale about a girl and a family curse.
Jennifer
Jan 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebooks-online, sff
Great short. Definitely looking forward to more from this author.
Diana Green
Mar 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq
This was an intriguing little fable, simple but surprisingly compelling. It had a dreamlike quality, with wonderful imagery and an odd twist at the end.
Chang
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Dec 04, 2014
Arno
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Tania
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Sep 02, 2014
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Abra Staffin-Wiebe loves dark science fiction, cheerful horror, and futuristic fairy tales. Dozens of her short stories have appeared at publications including Tor.com, Escape Pod, and Odyssey Magazine. She lives in Minneapolis, where she wrangles her children, pets, and the mad scientist she keeps in the attic. Discover more of her fiction at her website, http://www.aswiebe.com.