Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Portrait of a Witch, Albert E. Cowdrey

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, January/February 2015; 7,726 words
Rating: 3, Good, ordinary, story

The FBI forces crooked accountant Alfred to take a job with Lord Pye on a Caribbean tax haven to try to prove Lady Pye is a serial killer.

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: Lots of pieces in the story, and they all come together at the end. We're sure early on that Lady Fay's pictures steal souls, but only at the end do we realize it was Lord Pye all along. Cute that "Fay" comes from a word meaning "Fate." "Antenora" is the middle third of the ninth circle of Hell, where those who betrayed their country are frozen in ice.

Con: It's not clear why Lord Pye reveals this info. It's not clear why the US FBI cares in the first place.

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