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April 3rd, 2008

Reviews for 'The Funeral, Ruined'

The Fix:

Ben Peek creates a grim yet interesting world in “The Funeral, Ruined.” Linette, damaged emotionally and physically in the war against the Empress and her Children, is planning a funeral for Anthony. This story fits in well with the theme of this anthology, taking place in the imaginary city of Issuer where the crematoria ovens dominate the horizon and fill the city with ash. Told in a combination of straight narrative and epistolary form, the story picks up steam despite its slow beginning. Peek may have been trying to do establish mood with the lethargic opening, but it’s not until halfway through that any dialogue appears and the story gains momentum. Though “The Funeral, Ruined” failed to hook me immediately, I found much about it to like, and it is a memorable, morbid world spun from the author’s imagination.

Fantasy Book Critic:

“The Funeral, Ruined” by Ben Peek. This short story starts out slowly, but once the setting was established—Issuer is a city that trades in the industry of death—I was captivated by the tragic love story with its Frankenstein/steampunk influences. Definitely one of the anthology’s better contributions…

Some Dude on Amazon:

There are outstanding stories from some of my favorite writers, such as Jay Lake's "Promises: A Tale of the City Imperishable" (a story set in the City Imperishable from his novel Trial of Flowers) and Hal Duncan's "The Tower of Morning's Bones" (a story using the mythology of Vellum: The Book of All HoursVellum and Ink), excellent work from notables like Ben Peek ("The Funeral, Ruined") and Forrest Aguirre ("Andretto Walks the King's Way"), and great efforts from authors I'd never read before, including "Sammarynda Deep" by Cat Sparks and "They Would Only Be Roads" by Darin C. Bradley.



David Bowie Review

Look, lets just call it the day of reviews:

From Grant Watson (angriest):

2012, edited by Alisa Krasnostein and Ben Payne, is a thin book. I love thin books. I love a well-written, lightweight book that you can read on the train without spraining your wrist. It's rush hour in the morning, you have to stand and hold onto a pole or something with one hand, and so you've only got the other hand to hold whatever book you're reading so you're not going to want the latest George R.R. Martin. 2012, on the other hand, is a new science fiction anthology with original stories by eleven Australian authors and is only a handy 118 pages long.

You might think I'm being facetious, but I'm not - I genuinely love short books. Those 800 page fantasy behemoths scare the absolute crap out of me.

2012 presents eleven different visions of what life might be like in four years time. It's a very short distance ahead, requiring some fairly clever speculation: after all, the future's going to be different to the present, but the future.


The remaining five stories aren't bad by any stretch imaginable, but they didn't grab my attention like the six above. Two of the contributions in this anthology, "David Bowie" by Ben Peek and "Apocalypse Now" by Lucy Sussex, both felt a bit throwaway to me. This is a shame, because they're both fantastic authors - I suppose I was hoping for something more substantial from them.

Buy it here.

So, any more?