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These are the chronicles of a book addict, a photo junkie, and an aspiring author, rewriting the very fabric of reality one page (and one snapshot) at a time. From the strange to the unusual; the abandoned to the abnormal; the haunted to the historic; the supernatural to the surreal; the forests of dark fantasy, the cemeteries of gothic horror, and the post-apocalyptic ruins of science fiction are the landscapes of my imagination.
For me, the best kind of anthology is a genre-specific one. I like the novelty of ideas, the variety of subjects, and the unknown factor of what's coming next. While I do enjoy themed anthologies, I find that the subject tends to wear a bit thin by the end, and I'm always left second-guessing myself as to whether a story was weak, or I've just grown tired of the theme.
The Book of Apex: Volume Four of Apex Magazine is a genre-specific anthology . . . in the broadest sense. Like it's namesake, from whom the stories are reprinted, this is a collection of science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories from a wide variety of authors. Editor Lynne M. Thomas has dived deep into the first 15 issues of her tenure, selecting 33 of the best stories to present to the reader here.
I don't want to say too much and spoil the stories here, but standouts for me included:
Like all anthologies, The Book of Apex: Volume Four of Apex Magazine is hit-or-miss, depending upon your preferred genre, narrative style, and storytelling framework. There are longer tales here with complete story arcs, and shorter tales that are little more than isolated scenes. In between are some unusual tales that leave you wondering from what larger narrative piece the fragment fell. You may not love them all, but you're certain to find ones you love.