cover image Elementary: All-New Tales of the Elemental Masters

Elementary: All-New Tales of the Elemental Masters

Edited by Mercedes Lackey. DAW, $7.99 mass market (320p) ISBN 978-0-7564-0959-3

Warmth and passion abound in Lackey’s second Elemental Masters anthology, which ties in to her ongoing series of novels. The shared universe is thrown open to a wide range of historical urban fantasy stories to build on themes of family, chosen or otherwise, and what it means to use and share the power of the elementals. Elisabeth Waters’s “Fire’s Daughter” contemplates the discovery of one’s own true self. Ron Collins’s “The Flying Contraption” breathes childlike glee and life into historical events. Lackey’s own “Into the Woods” capstones the collection with a mix of horror and thoughtful delight. Though several stories build on previous Elemental Masters works, new readers will have no trouble understanding the world and its characters. The strength of the anthology comes in the unity and flow of the stories as each one builds subtly toward a gentle, thoughtful point with a perfect blend of emotion and intrigue. (Dec.)