Unusual Suspects: Stories of Mystery & Fantasy - Simon R. Green, Laurie R. King, Laura Anne Gilman, Carole Nelson Douglas, Michael A. Stackpole, Michael Armstrong, Charlaine Harris, Sharon Shinn, Mike Doogan, Dana Stabenow, John Straley, Donna Andrews
Review on a story by story basis. More at my blog: There's Nothing Wrong with Anything

Lucky- Charlaine Harris

It's a story set in the world of Sookie and it seems to take place right before the most recent book. Anyhoo, there is an absence of Eric which sort of made me go "aw man" but there is a Bill appearance. This is not a Sookie romance nor strictly a Sookie Vampire story, it explores Sookie's powers and it teams her up with Amelia.

It's a decent story, nothing amazing, nothing that pops up and grabs you but a decent read for those of us who are Sookie fans. If you aren't a Sookie fan, well, this is going to be a boring read and you may in fact skip over it.

In keeping with the vein of Mystery and Fantasy- I give this story -- 3 magic bullets

Bogieman - Carole Nelson Douglas

Ok, this one had promise but I confess it confessed the heck out of me after the first paragraph. I nearly skipped it. And up until two minutes ago had no idea it was from a larger book (that coincidentally I keep looking at in the bookstore and shaking my head, thinking I'll hate it. So from the pov of someone who has not read the books:

It's about Delilah Street, a former reporter who is now a Paranormal Investigator in Las Vegas. Her specialty is her connection with silver and the ability to glean (and maybe manipulate??) things with silver in them. Vegas in 2013 is crawling with CinSims - Cinematic Simulations that are an amalgamation of both an actor and the character. In this case, Sam Spade as played by Humphrey Bogart has been murdered. The question becomes can you really kill a simulated human who is really nothing more than a dead person who has been reanimated?

Ok, so again, this has a promising premise - something like the movie Blade Runner with a combination of Jenna Black's Morgan Kinsley with the balls of Simon R. Green's John Taylor. However, things just go downhill from the second page. World Building is a very difficult thing to do it can be even more difficult when you only have 20 pages to do it. Backstories are confusing and it isn't much helped by Delilah's first person POV which have her living in the present with no exposition whatsoever (or no clear exposition) on her relationship with the Police Chief, Cocaine/Christophe/Snow and how she can do what she does.

I'm going to give this three magic bullets just because I liked the idea of where this story was going. Maybe in a larger format it would make more sense?