Internet Review of Science Fiction reviews Black Gate 13

Internet Review of Science Fiction reviews Black Gate 13

Every month Lois Tilton covers the best new short fiction in her column at The Internet Review of Science Fiction, one of the genre’s most respected and enjoyable e-zines. This is what she had to say (in part) about Black Gate 13:

In recent issues, this zine has shifted its emphasis toward the Sword and Sorcery end of the fantasy spectrum, and every piece of fiction here could be described to some extent as Dark Fantasy. But there is dark Dark Fantasy and light Dark Fantasy, and most of the stories here are on the lighter side.

“The Good Sheriff”  by David Wesley Hill

Charles Duke, in a previous installment of this series, has found himself in another world, where the gold he has accumulated is worthless. Here, the local currency is grains of good. Duke locates a sorcerer who agrees to send him back to 1879 Texas in exchange for a fee, and since he has just killed the local sheriff, he takes over the job and finds several ways to make it pay. But of course there are complications:

“‘Ah, crap,’ Duke muttered, and sprinted for the constable’s office, where the three deputies were standing on the porch rail and goggling at the energy display.

Duke’s first instinct was to take down “Old Reliable” from its peg on the wall, but instead of the shotgun, he armed himself with his Henry repeater.”

This light fantasy is pretty fun to read and stands quite well on its own. Duke is an interesting character, well-suited to this sort of tale.

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You can find the complete review here.

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