I want to highlight my past three rereads, all great:
Stranger Things Happen by Kelly Link:
The second time through this excellent collection. As on the first read, only the first story didn’t work for me. But I will give it another read next time I visit the collection because Link deserves the benefit of the doubt. The second story really works despite how wrong she gets library staffing. All the others are unqualifiedly great. The standouts for me are Flying Lessons, one of the best contemporary reworkings of greek myth I’ve read, Survivor’s Ball, or The Donner Party which is as delightfully weird as the title would indicate and Most of My Friends are Two Thirds Water which is one of the best “in the manner of Phillip K Dick” stories I’ve read.
Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose- Mild Recommendation
Water Off a Black Dog’s Back- Highly Recommended
The Specialist’s Hat- Canon Worthy
Flying Lessons- Canon
Travels With the Snow Queen- Canon Worthy
Vanishing Act- Canon Worthy
Survivor’s Ball, or The Donner Party- Canon
Most of My Friends are Two Thirds Water- Canon Worthy
Louises's Ghost- Canon Worthy
The Girl Detective- Canon Worthy
Overall Collection: Canon Worthy/Canon
Curious Toys by Elizabeth Hand
An amazing carnavalesque historical serial killer thriller. Not a lot to add to my previous review, other than to say this time through, in addition to the Devil In the White City and Geek Love comparisons, I would add that I was reminded of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay and Carter Beats the Devil, though this is considerably darker than either of those. Even better on reread. I may well mark 2019 as the year in which I discovered Elizabeth Hand, who, earlier this year, I realized is my favorite living writer.
Fifth Head of Cerberus by Gene Wolfe.
Don’t have much to add to last year’s review. The first of the three interrelated novellas is still one of the most perfect, and perfectly horrible, things I’ve read. I’ve opted to take Wolfe’s Peace off of my annual reread list, but this stays on. A masterpiece of a mosaic novel.
Rereads and Everything Else 2020 40-42/35