Sunday, March 12, 2017

With Cardamom I'll Bind Their Lips, by Beth Cato

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(Fantasy) Vera gets a job helping a local woman seal the spirits of the dead so they can fade away in peace. (4,479 words; Time: 14m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

"," by (edited by Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas), appeared in issue 15, published on .

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

Pro: The magic is simple but effective. The requirements of talent, ingredients, and knowledge make for an elegant, restrained system.

It's easy to see how Vera's desire to please leads to her investigating things she ought to leave alone. At the end, though, it all comes out right.

Con: The ending is unsatisfying, somehow. For one thing, Magdelana's reaction to the spilling of the Cardamom seems totally out of character for her, as does her arrival with a knife to kill whatever innocent person uncovered Vasily's ghost.

Vera seems far too mature to only be eleven years old.

Other Reviews: Search Web, Browse Review Sites (Issue 15)
Beth Cato Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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4 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. I found this very atmospheric and effective.

  2. Liked this one...thought Vera was pretty spot-on as a precocious young girl. Especially enjoyed her talking to the animals.

    1. I pretty much liked everything except the ending.

  3. Reprint/alternate podcast at Cast of Wonders: