Title: Riverdance Anthology
Authors: Morwen Navarre, Lynn Townsend, L.J. Hamline, Dale Cameron Lowry, Asta Idonea
Publisher: Torquere Press
Pages/Word Count: 99 Pages
At a Glance: On the whole this is a nice anthology; the stories are fanciful and hit a distinctly Irish note.
Reviewed By: Carrie
Blurb: Riverdance is a compilation of all things Irish. From fae flitting hither and thither trying to trick their quarry, to a modern-day Highland games, complete with caber tossing and traditional dance, our romantic compilation of Celtic tales and lore are sure to remind readers that love is the pot-o-gold at the end of the rainbow. Morwen Navarre brings us The Sidhe’s Apprentice—a tale of a young man desperately wanting to be a wizard, like his grandfather, who never banked on falling in love with his mentor. In Finding Balance, Lynn Townsend sets readers in the middle of the Highland games—as well as between two former lovers who need to forgive and forget. L. J. Hamline’s tale, Luck of the Irish, tells of some lucky days that turn into lucky nights. Born of Fire, Dale Cameron Lowry’s offering, brings readers the abduction of a human by fairies—and the greatest lesson of all: love is more than superficial. Finally, Asta Idonea’s The First Swallow of Spring chronicles an annual pilgrimage to the land of the fae, and how the wiley lord tries to keep a human for his own.
Review: I love reading anthologies. We all have our favorite authors, but I am always looking for a new author to follow, and anthologies give you the chance to sample an author’s work without the expense of buying a whole book that you may or may not like. I also love having several short stories in one place, having the option of moving on if the story doesn’t please, or just resting if a short hits me just right. This anthology gives you several short stories that span from modern day to faeries, so there is something there for everyone. This is an interesting mix of authors who mostly have backgrounds in fantasy, and the stories in the anthology reflect that.
The Sidhe’s Apprentice is about a young man who longs to follow in his magical grandfather’s shoes and be a powerful wizard. His mentor, a stern man who demands excellence, is someone he desperately wants to please…never realizing the most potent magic of all comes through love. This story is written my Morwen Navarre, who is known for her Ghost books. She is well versed in creating magical worlds for her characters. This was an interesting story and I enjoyed the world the author created.
Finding Balance is written by Lynn Townsend and features two men who desperately need each other as much as they need to forgive each other. It is a second chances story between an Irish dancer and a big, burly caber tosser—an unlikely but heartfelt pairing. This story is so sweet, and you hurt for the characters and root for their HEA.
Luck of the Irish is a friends-to-lovers story, helped along by a lucky four leaf clover and a little touch of magic. This story is written by L.J. Hamlin, who does well with mixing modern day with a little fantasy.
Born of Fire is written by Dale Cameron Lowry and is a heartwarming magical story of a boy who was scarred as a baby by fire. Kidnapped by faeries, he dreams of his true love as a face in the moon. When the faeries try to kidnap his love as well, he finds the courage to step forward and be the man he needs to be to break free of the magic and heal from within.
The First Swallow of Spring is a story of stone circles and the fae. Seanan is drawn to the fae circle every year. When the first swallow of spring alights on his windowsill, he knows the veil between his world and the world of the fae will be drawn back and he will be allowed to enter for just one night. Iorweth waits for him on the other side, and only through love can they find their HEA. This story is written by Asta Idonea, who has several other fantasy books under her belt.
On the whole this is a nice anthology; the stories are fanciful and hit a distinctly Irish note. If you are looking for in-depth stories, this won’t work for you. Some of these stories could have been fleshed out just a smidge, but if you are looking for a touch of magic and a whole lotta Irish, and you want short, light stories, then this absolutely is a great compilation.
On a side note, the front cover says that this is a MM/FF anthology, but it does not contain any F/F stories. All the shorts in this anthology are M/M.
You can buy Riverdance here: