Book Review: Tales From Alternate Earths

Tales From Alternate EarthsTales From Alternate Earths by Daniel M. Bensen

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked this idea for an anthology and even though the premise is popular and often tried, I was intrigued to pick it up and explore the stories. My favorites were “Twilight of the Mesozoic Moon,” which also had the best title and the most imaginative characters, and “The Secret War,” which provided a unique twist to a story I already thought I knew something about.

The collection is reasonably eclectic but I thought there were too many post-apocalyptic stories set in ruined cities. This tended to necessitate so much world-building that there wasn’t enough time to fully develop the plot and characters. In that vein, I would have liked to see a world more subtly altered, or perhaps more stories in which the world was unequivocally altered for the better; I think the story, “One More Dawn” could be characterized this way. But mostly, I came away from this collection thinking that this group of authors believe we now live in the best of all possible worlds.

The anthology is thoughtfully arranged and introduced. I enjoyed the Prologue and the Meet the Author sections at the end of each story and would read more in the Inklings Press series. It reads like a labor of love for authors exploring new ideas and finding their voices.

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