Halflings, Hobbits, Warrows & Weefolk

Brian Thomsen, Editor, Baird Searles, Editor
Brian Thomsen, Editor, Baird Searles, Editor Grand Central Publishing $10.99 (275p) ISBN 978-0-446-39281-5
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This collection in honor of J.R.R. Tolkien's 100th birthday in 1992 features stories about heroes who, like Tolkien's hobbits, are small in stature and not heroic in the traditional sense. ``The Eranis Pipe'' by Mickey Zucker Reichert is somewhat formulaic and ``The Twice-Born Bard'' by Michael Williams is a*n uninspired poem, but otherwise the stories are quick and delightful--much like the protagonists. They range from the pure silliness of Craig Shaw Gardner's ``A Fumbling of Fairies'' (with weefolk named Lalalillylololoobaloobashebangshebang and Ramalamadingdong) and R. A. Salvatore's ``A Sparkle for Homer'' (carrying on Tolkien's tradition of hobbits who deplore adventuring) to the graceful wonder and storytelling magic of Jody Lynn Nye's ``Moon Shadows'' and Judith Moffett's ``The Origin of the Hob.'' The most fascinating twist on the legend is Maya Kaathrynsp ok Bohnhoff's ``Hobbits,'' in which a child overlays the hobbit image on an elusive alien--a somewhat shocking ending involves the family cat (tellingly named Troll). Searles is the author of Films of Science Fiction and Fantasy ; Thomsen edits the Questar science fiction line. (Dec.)
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