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White Time

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  216 ratings  ·  33 reviews
From the remarkable mind that brought readers the award-winning stories of Black Juice comes an equally haunting collection of science fiction and fantasy tales.
Hardcover, 216 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by Eos (first published January 1st 1999)
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Average rating 3.72  · 
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 ·  216 ratings  ·  33 reviews

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Posted at Shelf Inflicted

Anthologies are fun to read because they feature a wide variety of authors and styles. With their hit-or-miss qualities, however, they can also end up being disappointing. If I run into a real dud of a story, do I set the book aside and pick up something else or skip the story and continue reading? I have several partially read anthologies just because that dud was stuck somewhere in the middle.

Short stories by one author are a little different. At least I can expect m
Jun 13, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: existing fans of Margo Lanagan
My second Margo Lanagan's collection of short stories. While enjoyable, it is less compelling than Red Spikes.

First, unlike Red Spikes which had a feel magical realism throughout, White Time is a blend of genres - it consists of sci-fi, fantasy and distopian stories. It makes the collection a little uneven.

And second, a couple of stories are just a little too sketchy for my taste and not very successful in bringing their points across - "Welcome Blue," for instance, a story about the arrival of
Mar 02, 2010 rated it liked it
I have a copy of Lanagan's multiple award-winning first collection Black Juice somewhere in the house; I began reading it when it first came out, but for some reason I was interrupted and I never got back to it. On the strength of this second collection I should make a bit of an effort to dig Black Juice out.

On the strength of the best of this second collection, anyway. Although there's no doubt that Lanagan has a strong control of voice a sometimes excellent imagination, on several occasions
Apr 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017-reads
It was Neil Gaiman's glowing recommendation of Lanagan's Black Juice which first brought the author to my attention. Black Juice's opening story, "Singing my Sister Down", is a mesmerizing piece of short fiction which left a deep impression on me when I first read it. So, I was looking forward to reading this, her first collection, and comparing the two books. (Which means a re-read of Black Juice is in order!)

Readers are dropped into Lanagan's worlds with minimal exposition. Accordingly, I will
Jun 06, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Audrey
Shelves: kids-books
I read Black Juice by this author and loved it, so I was excited to discover another collection of her short stories. It's good, but none of the stories stuck with me the way a few of the stories from Black Juice did. One thing I especially approve of in her writing is that she doesn't waste any time on exposition. The reader is dumped "in medias res" and left to figure out when and where he is (not always an obvious task, since she likes to play with alternate realities/magical realism/etc.). S ...more
Sep 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Ahhhhh! Margo Lanagan, how bleak and empty of strangeness my life must've been before I found you!

I love all her collections of shorts, but I have an ebook copy of this on my tablet as an OMG-I-forgot-to-bring-a-book emergency backup book. Even having read the stories in it over and over, they blow me away every time. Creepy, quirky... part of the creepiness is that every character is absolutely solid and real-feeling. It's impossible not to feel like these are real people reacting completely ra
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book and the titular work.

It's so hard to write a review for a Margo Lanagan book because I'm always tempted to oversell it.
That's because it deserves it, and I only write honest reviews. And this book is awesome.

Just read the book okay, then buy one those shirts that they sell down at the market in Hobart that says "Margo Lanagan is God."
Jenny Lane
Feb 16, 2020 rated it liked it
Three stars but possibly two and a half. This collection of stories was exactly what it promises you in terms of the exploration of new worlds and concepts. But sometimes, some of them were so complex or so abstract that you don't actually know what's going on. However, that's not to be said of all of them. The second half of the book had some really neat little stories. The characters were likeable, the ideas were interesting but i just couldn't help but judge this collection as a whole. I'm gl ...more
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Enjoyed the stories White Time and Big Rage
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 21, 2013 marked it as to-read-normal-speed
My thoughts so far:

White Time - Complex, meaningful, imaginative... a wonderful opening. (4 stars)

Dedication -

Tell and Kiss - A "teen with problems" story twisted with magic realism. Sad, real, and hopeful. (4 stars)

The Queen's Notice -

Big Rage - How interesting we humans are, that a few sheets of paper can make us laugh and cry and fall in love! In this case, I fell in love with the protagonist in a mere 20 pages. She's a fantastic example of a strong female character: not the kick-ass type (w
Tranna Foley
Feb 12, 2010 rated it liked it
Presents ten short stories, both dark and hopeful, that journey into the past, the future, and altered versions of the present. - From library catalog record

This book of short stories is weird...but interesting. It is definitely not for everyone. If you are very interested in fantasy or science fiction or just strange stories, you may like it. Some stories I really liked and others were just okay.

Review from Booklist:
Although this is the second story collection by Australian author Lanagan to r
Michelle Moore
Apr 26, 2015 rated it liked it
Margo Lanagan is an award winning Australian writer. This book was my introduction to her writing, and it certainly won’t be my last, as I intend to find out more.

White Time was originally published ten years ago, and I’ve read reviews which feel that it’s not as polished as her later stories. This may be so, and makes me even more interested in her other books, but what this collection shows is a vivid imagination and an adaptable writing style.

This is a YA collection, and whilst some do have t
Apr 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Some of these stories were amazing, and others, I didn't understand. I was expecting more science fiction and more blending of time, but this anthology seemed more like a random bunch of stories stuck together. I didn't see the thematic link as well as I saw it in Black Juice.
My favorite story from this anthology was Dedication - dressing the battle-scarred and mutilated princess so that her father never notices that his once-beautiful daughter is any different. The dedication ceremony at the en
Aug 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My odyssey through the short story collections of Margo Lanagan continues. This time, I travel through White Time. Once again, the worlds that Margo Lanagan creates vary from similar to our worlds to completely different but the emotions that we are exposed to are always familiar and always moving!

Read the rest of my review at
Oct 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
It's been a few years since I read Lanagan's Black Juice, so I was looking forward to enjoying this collection. And I wasn't disappointed.

Lanagan is phenomenal at creating believable, eerie worlds in just a few pages. Just when you get used to living in an ant colony (The Queen's Notice), Lanagan pops you into the world of tiny wish-fulfilling sprites (Midnight Mission).

Just marvelous work, and well worth reading.
Mar 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Margo doesn't tell you the rules. Her bad-guys don't explain their motivation. Her good guys don't walk around in shining armor. Instead reading each of these tales takes you to a distict place where even if you don't know the rules and you can't name the planet; you can smell and see and taste and feel everything deeply. ...more
Willow Curtis
Oct 18, 2011 rated it liked it
After reading the first four stories, I set the book down and thought I wasn't going to finish it. However, after reading something else I was able to pick the book up again and get through it. I'm glad I did. Out of the 10 stories in this anthology, my favorite were The Boy Who Didn't Yearn and Wealth. The others were Okay. ...more
Oct 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
These stories have a lot of ideas packed into them. My favorite is the title story. It has a great sense of sadness, inevitability, and wasted restlessness of life, as well as a weird premise that was explained just enough.

Sure, sometimes Lanagan's language calls attention to itself but not in a way that is pleased with itself. Maybe a bit peacocky. That's what I want, though, when I read her.
Jul 26, 2009 added it
Had high expectations for this book but very disappointed. Skim read the final 2 chapters. The entire book made no sense to me at all. Perhaps because it was teenage fiction I was too old for it............ Does not even get 1 star.
Nov 28, 2009 rated it it was ok
One thing Lanagan does do very well in these stories is "show don't tell". In most of the stories, the narrator speaks as if we already know the rules of their world, rather than explaining, and the reader must figure things out through context. ...more
Jun 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Collection of short stories, the first of which is the story White Time. Lanagan is one of the most amazing writers I've come across. Her verse is hypnotic and you can't go to sleep once you start one of her books. Sleep comes upon completion else you lie awake wondering. ...more
Dec 09, 2012 rated it did not like it
Maybe it gets better later on, but I'm giving up after 130 pages in because it is pretty boring and nothing exciting ever happens with the characters that you have no background on. Not a good book. ...more
Oct 05, 2007 rated it it was ok
this is what i say so far about this book...."????" not sure i get it yet. anyone else?? ...more
Compelling collection of short stories for young adults which I enjoyed thoroughly.
Nov 12, 2008 rated it liked it
After I finished this book, I still had no idea what it was about. But, it was nice...I guess?
Jun 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I'm generally not fond of short stories, but these were excellent. Technically young adult--stories are quirky and just plain odd. GREAT characters, real and in interesting circumstances... ...more
Leah Horlick
Jul 21, 2011 rated it it was ok
Not as good as Black Juice...we'll see about Red Spikes! ...more
Aug 23, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: teen
This just goes to show that I have no interest in short stories. Especially ones that are trying too hard. This collection was trying just too damn hard to be existential or something.
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Mind-bending as ever. Love it!
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Margo Lanagan, born in Waratah, New South Wales, is an Australian writer of short stories and young adult fiction.

Many of her books, including YA fiction, were only published in Australia. Recently, several of her books have attracted worldwide attention. Her short story collection Black Juice won two World Fantasy Awards. It was published in Australia by Allen & Unwin and the United Kingdom by Go

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