Saturday, December 19, 2020

Five Fortunes


This Fred Patten-edited anthology of anthropomorphic fictions marks perhaps the first time I’ve purchased a book based on its cover, and I’ll admit I’m largely involved in the furry fandom due to the art, and to a lesser extent the literature. The main theme of the collection is fortune, which can mean wealth or luck.

The cover art comes from the first story of the collection, “Chosen People” by Phil Geusz, with the lapine narrator Juniper Lawkeeper Rabbit sworn in as a sheriff in a Nevada town populated by Lapists.

The second story, “Huntress” by Renee Carter Hall, focuses on Leya, an aspiring hunter in a village populated by anthropomorphized lions.

The third story, “Going Concerns” by Watts Martin, is set in a steampunk world, following a wolf named Annie who serves as an investigator.

The fourth, “When a Cat Loves a Dog” by Mary E. Lowd, takes place in a future where humans have abandoned Earth to dogs, cats, and otters, opening with a cat and a dog tying the knot and facing adversity as they attempt to procreate.

The last story, “Piece of Mind” by Bernard Doove, deals with the problem of telepathy among the Caitians and R’Tarmarra, who cannot turn off his own telepathic powers.

All in all, I definitely enjoyed this collection, although some of the stories have odd stylistic choices such as “Piece of Mind” using the pronouns “shi” and “hir,” which wouldn’t make much sense to audiences unversed in gender terms. I probably liked “Chosen People” the best, and am interested in the other works of the featured authors.

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