Cover of In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett
Editors: Laura May and Sorin Siciu
Authors: Sorin Suciu, Laura May, Anna Mattaar, Caroline Friedel, Charlotte Slocombe, Choong Jay Vee, DK Mok, Luke Kemp, Lyn Godfrey, Michael K. Schaefer, Mike Reeves-McMillan, Peter Knighton, Phil Elstob, Robert McKelvey, Scott A. Butler, Simon Evans, Steven McKinnon
Price: About $4.99 on Amazon, others to come later.
Note: ALL proceeds go to Alzheimer’s Research UK.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
TL;DR: Take a moment to breathe and smile.
Disclaimer: I received this book in return for providing a review. All opinions are my own.
These stories, like a good memory, are not to be devoured in one setting lest they overwhelm you. I had to take breathers while reading this anthology, and I have never done that before unless it was motivated by boredom or exhaustion. In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett, is an anthology where each story begs to be savoured, lingering after its end.
Everyone in this anthology has nailed the Terry Pratchett irreverence, but most of all, I think, it is a fitting tribute to his memory. Each one has something to contribute to the anthology, but as usual, what one may like, another may not.
So it was with me and this anthology. I admit it was hard for me to get into Thanks for the Memory Cards by Luke Kemp, and How Fell the Towers Three by Peter Knighton, while funny, felt a little too familiar (as in the tropes and plot used). Strangers by Robert McKelvey was fun, but felt a little unresolved by the way it ended. Doris by Sorin Suciu was a fun read, and I loved the reference to TED talks.
Bubble Trouble by Charlotte Slocombe was a little of an unexpected heartbreak. Despite the peppy title, the premise was actually very tragic, and it was incredibly touching. Another one that tugged at the heart strings was Scott A Butler’s The Memoryarian. The things one would do for a loved one…
The Vividarium was wonderfully vibrant and vivid, but it also felt incredibly petty. It’s cute but just not to my taste. However, The Wondrous Land of Nib by Lyn Godfrey and If Only I’d Known by Simon Evans were. I thoroughly enjoyed both these stories, the Land of Nib making me feel guilty about my creations that have never seen anything beyond a few day’s lights.
Laura May’s The Shells of Lethe and Michael K Shaefer’s Ackerley’s Genuine Earth Antiques both deal with the consequences of deliberately forgetting. They also make me feel like these stories could be spun out into a novel or to a longer length. I’d like to wander more please.
The Chicken Gospel was a fun and enjoyable romp. I loved how looking at things from a different view changed and influenced the story so much. Caroline Friedel’s The Tale of the Storyteller is a wonderful way to send #GNUTerryPratchett off, which is one of the reasons why I wished it had been at the END of the book instead of the middle. I admit, I teared a little.
I also love the fact that there are not one, but TWO stories about the Lost Memories’ Department. Anna Mattaar’s The Archive of Lost Memories is something that I wish existed in real life, if only because I am a busybody. :p In contrast, Choong Jay Vee’s The Olivie Crowne Affair is a delightful take on missing memories. There’s also a dragon involved. But more importantly, homicidal computers.
Now we come to the stories that I think had the most fleshed out worlds. These were stories I think most closely reminded me of the early Discworld novels; where less words were needed to explain the tropes, and so the story could get to the plot and twisting the trope quicker.
There’s a Tattoo, but the Robes Hide It is one of those. I loved the humour, the wittiness, and the quiet desperation of the main character. While the ending may be predictable, it’s not such a bad thing; I was more amused by the reactions of the cast.
The Heart of the Labryinth though, was simply incredible. This is my favourite story of the lot. How DK Mok crammed AN ENTIRE FANTASY NOVEL into a short story is mindblowing. It doesn’t just talk about memory, but about overthrowing tyrants, making peace with your past, and did I mention an epic journey throughout the land? Among the people they rescued were the Kleptomaniac Kraken and the Judgemental Jellyfish, who eventually kept an eye on each other.
So get this Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett, especially if you are a fan of his works. Also, the publishers of the book are running a giveaway on Goodreads, so visit this link now.