The Dragon Book
Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois (Editors)
Ace, Nov 2009, $24.95
With nineteen entries by a virtual who’s who of fantasy, fans will enjoy this themed collection that look deep into the eyes of Dragons; as the editors explain in the preface: “by far the most potent and widespread of all mythological beasts". The entries are widespread in terms of time and place so various background brings freshness to the anthology. Especially strong contributions are “Vici” by Naomi Novak in the time of Caesar, the mother and son team of Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple who write of “The Tsar’s Dragons, the “Oakland Dragon Blues by Peter S Beagle with no Raiders involved only a traffic problem, and “A Stark and Wormy Knight” by Tad Williams. None of the compilation are bummers as each of the writers soar with this version of the mighty dragon who kick military butts (Garth Nix’s “Stop”) or freeze you with their eyes (“The Dragon’s Tale” by Tamora Pierce) or their heartbeat (“The War that Winter Is” by Tanith Lee). The key to this strong thematic short story collection is the wide diverse range of the authors as each makes flying with Dragons a fun fantasy collection.