The Poison Eaters and other Stories by Holly Black ~ Well known for her work writing The Spiderwick Chronicles and the A Modern Faerie’s Tale series Holly Black firmly plants her feet in the pantheon of modern fantasy writers with this collection of diverse and slightly disparate short stories (although I am also anxious to get my hands on Zombies vs. Unicorns). Providing a wide and slightly wild array of genre from werewolves to faeries, vampires to doppelgangers (i think) to the sisters weird, this collection shows and feeds a wide array of interests.
In a similar vein to Charles DeLint’s work in the fictional town of Newford, these stories take place in the same fictional realm as the titles Tithe, Valiant and Ironside. Too many stories delve into here, my personal favorite is the introduction of a faerie marketplace where abides a girl that is poisonous to the touch and another that has the chutspah to challenge the devil to an eating competition. The volume provides a tapestry of modern urban fantasy that weaves the dark and fey together with the light and airy all while keeping an unbroken thread of Black’s innate humor and edginess (with a delightful dash of the macabre for color). A wonderful collection to keep by the bedside to read nightly…and still be able to turn off the lights afterwards.