Friday, 6 September 2013

Caragh Reviews - Carniepunk Anthology (Ft Rachel Caine & more)

Published - 23rd July 2013
Publisher - Gallery Books
Format -E-book
Synopsis - A star-studded urban fantasy anthology featuring bestselling authors Rachel Caine, Rob Thurman, Seanan McGuire, Jennifer Estep, and Kevin Hearne, whose stories explore the creepy, mysterious, and, yes, sometimes magical world of traveling carnivals. The traveling carnival is a leftover of a bygone era, a curiosity lurking on the outskirts of town. It is a place of contradictions—the bright lights mask the peeling paint; a carnie in greasy overalls slinks away from the direction of the Barker’s seductive call. It is a place of illusion—is that woman’s beard real? How can she live locked in that watery box? And while many are tricked by sleight of hand, there are hints of something truly magical going on. One must remain alert and learn quickly the unwritten rules of this dark show. To beat the carnival, one had better have either a whole lot of luck or a whole lot of guns—or maybe some magic of one’s own. Featuring stories grotesque and comical, outrageous and action-packed, Carniepunk is the first anthology to channel the energy and attitude of urban fantasy into the bizarre world of creaking machinery, twisted myths, and vivid new magic.

I got sent this SO long ago and I feel terrible that it took me so long to finish it but honestly, it just wasn't working for me. I was so excited about the premise of this anthology - which as a fun note, was my first ever anthology! I knew it would be dark & twisted and of course, with Rachel Caine's name on the front there was no way I was missing out. Sadly, Rachel Caine was one of the only things I really enjoyed about it.

The anthology started off well, the stories were, as expected, dark and twisted but as I read on, it was just a little too much for me. Though i'm a 25yo mature adult, the adult content was just a little overbearing at times and the twisted was way beyond what I imagined. Somewhere along the way it just stopped being fun and became a chore. Sometimes, the location i'm reading in can really affect how I feel about a book and so I tried everything. I read in a tent in the middle of a field, I read on the beach, I read sitting in the window, lying in bed - nada. It just wasn't for me. Some of the stories were excellent and left me wanting more but others really felt like I was being punished for something..! 

I'm very grateful for getting to read this but I don't think i'll be buying it for my shelves anytime soon and if I do, it will purely be the allure of owning Caine's entire bibliography.

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