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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
The biting wit of Kit Reed (J. Eden, @expectations, Thinner than Thou, et al.) is unleashed and baring its canines in her short story collection Dogs of Truth. Containing speculative stories that are provocative, visionary, edifying -- and just plain weird -- Reed's anthology takes a decidedly unconventional look at repentance, avarice, and obsession, among other things.
"High Rise High" -- Reed's "bizarre response" to all the high school movies she has seen -- involves a revolt inside a 100-story school that more resembles a fortress than a learning facility. As the siege drags on and the rebellious students threaten to kill a teacher's pregnant wife, undercover agents sneak into the school and infiltrate the pimple-faced revolutionaries, only to be stymied by -- the prom! "Grand Opening," a story about the world's largest mega-mall, which "outstrips everything humanity has ever devised for profit and pleasure," pits unstoppable greed against immovable ideology, while "Escape from Shark Island" takes family bonding to freakish extremes. "Precautions" is a cautionary tale about, not surprisingly, taking too many precautions.
Reed explains in the book's introduction exactly what this collection isn't: "I wish I could write about nothing but sunshine and flowers for a lovely book with pastel butterflies flying across the gold foil title -- a book that my mother would be proud of, but that just wouldn't be me." Fans of dark and sardonic speculative fiction from authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Paul Di Filippo should definitely pick up this highly amusing -- and pastel butterfly-free -- collection. Paul Goat Allen