Top positive review
Consistently excellent collection
Reviewed in the United States on June 26, 2021
Anthologies can be hit or miss when many different authors try to deal with the same theme or plot device. Depending on the idea and the author, stories can be anywhere from brilliant to weak, especially if some authors are commissioned and have little time to re-work a story.
This collection doesn't show that problem. The stories are consistently good, even excellent, and a few were from writers I have not encountered before. The idea of "a stranger comes to town," the outsider who stirs up the status quo, is one of the standard themes in fiction, but the authors in this collection give us everything from comedy to dark suspense, and few of them falter along the way. Lisa Unger and Tilia Klebenow Jacobs are new to me, and both wrote terrific stories. Michael Koryta's story goes in an unexpected but intriguing direction, too.
This is one of the best collections of stories on a common theme that I have encountered. I will definitely look for more work by many of the authors who are new to me.