creative [kree-ey-tiv]: adjective. Synonyms: clever, cool, innovative, inspired, prolific, stimulating.

criticism [krit-uh-siz-uhm]: noun. The act of passing judgment as to the merits of anything.

24 Feb 2011

Zombies vs Unicorns - edited by Holly Black and Justine Larbalestier

This anthology is composed of short stories that are either about zombies (braaaaaiiins!), or unicorns (aka horses with horns that, in one story in particular, have farts that smell like flowers), and sometimes even both (these stories are usually filed under the "unicorn" stories, though, because let's face it, zombies are already awesome on their own - they don't need extra supernatural help). All written by a bunch of great writers, including Cassandra Clare and Scott Westerfeld, whose novels I enjoy very much and who were both members of Team Zombie. Yeah, zombie stories in general are just better than unicorn stories, with their dystopian elements and whatnot.

I must admit, though, that some unicorn stories were better than I expected - The Care and Feeding of Your Baby Killer Unicorn by Diana Peterfreund was probably my favorite unicorn story, probably because its unicorns were deadly predators rather than fawning pictures of perfection. An honourable mention goes out to Kathleen Duey, whose story was a first-person narration by a very creepy unicorn. It  really creeped me out.

My all-around favorite story of the bunch (and favorite zombie story to boot) was definitely Love Will Tear Us Apart by Alaya Dawn Johnson, though; it featured a partial zombification caused by a prion (yay, science!), characters that don't necessarily fit typical, expected paradigms (yay, non-heteronormativity!), and tons of references to some of my favorite music (yay, Arctic Monkeys!).

So yeah, I enjoyed this anthology. And for future reference, here are all the authors included in the anthology (why should I write their names down when I can just type them up, leave them here and check back later when I'll want to read new stuff/when I won't be swamped in projects and lab reports?):

Team Zombie (aka TEAM AWESOME):

  • Alaya Dawn Johnson
  • Carrie Ryan
  • Maureen Johnson
  • Scott Westerfeld
  • Cassandra Clare
  • Libba Bray
Team Unicorn:
  • Garth Nix
  • Naomi Novik
  • Margo Lanagan
  • Diana Peterfreund
  • Meg Cabot
  • Kathleen Duey

Hey, look, there's a short promo film here! It features the - pretty epic, I must admit - cover art that's under the black cover for the cover (I'm thinking about the hardcover version, here. Wait, did I even make sense?). Anyways, the cover art's great!

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