Wednesday, January 3, 2018

2017 Beneath Ceaseless Skies Magazine

A Late Quintessence by Justin Howe  Time: 08m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 228
(High Fantasy) Years ago, Dierponte Hast suppressed a treasonous play by a renegade alchemist, and he’s shocked to hear someone reciting from it all these years later.
A Marvelous Deal by Kate Dollarhyde  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 224
(Horror) Sylvie lost both of her parents, and she’s running out of food, but a magic carrot offers a way to bring them back.
A Place to Grow by A.T. Greenblatt  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 225
(High Fantasy) Lillian likes the most recent world, and she doesn’t want her uncles to tear it down. But they’ve already dismantled the sun, so she’ll have to move fast.
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(High Fantasy; Birdverse) The Old Royal has ruled the desert for millennia from their palace where a star once fell, but the arrival of a young stranger brings chaos.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: CPayseur
Across Pack Ice, a Fire by Marissa Lingen  Time: 18m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 233
(High Fantasy) Solveig seeks vengeance for the magical plague that took her beloved husband, but she can’t act openly or else she risks dragging her own country into a war.
After Burning by Wren Wallis  Time: 21m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 227
(High Fantasy) Almas fears that the new commander will try to dispose of the wounded enemy children she cares for in her clinic—particularly since he’s the one who destroyed their town.
And the Village Breathes by Emily B. Cataneo  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 236
(Fantasy Horror) Sleeping monsters keep turning up outside the village, and the villagers are making uncomfortable connections with Magda because she too hibernates for months at a time.
Carnival Nine by Caroline M. Yoachim  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 225
(Clockwork Fantasy) Zee lives with her father in a windup world. Bored with her life, she decides to visit the carnival.  She meets a boy, and things go from there.
Corpus Grace by William Broom  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 234
(High Fantasy) The last Theodoran priest tries to save the last of their saints from destruction by an empire that has its own priests and saints.
Crescendo by J.S. Veter2  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 221
(Fantasy) Four children sneak out to investigate a Hole, even though they're dangerous and forbidden.
Deathspeaker by Stephen Case  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 231
(High Fantasy) She rules by virtue of her power to kill merely by speaking a name, but she faces attack from an enemy with an immortal army.
Dire Wolf by Michael J. DeLuca  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 234
(Fantasy) Staggerlee loves a good fight, and wishes Fennario had more dangerous men in it. Then he meets the Wolf in a card game.
Every Black Tree by Natalia Theodoridou  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 236
(Fantasy Adventure) Tired of immortality, Pentheas seeks the one tree that can hang him. Eternally pregnant, Serah seeks an end to it one way or another. So they’re going to work together. Somehow.
Forever Night by Dana Beehr  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 241
(Dark Fantasy) Her grandmother stopped the darkness at great price, so when Elseir comes to Tomas’s village, he’s eager to help her in her new quest. Whatever it is.
Forgive Us Our Trespasses by Bennett North2  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 237
(Historical Fantasy) In the old west, in a terrible drought, the narrator seeks vengeance with a pistol and two very special silver bullets.
Gallows Girl by Mel Kassel2  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 233
(High Fantasy) A gallows girl uses her power to let hanged men take a little innocence to the next world. Kal’s sister was a great one, but Kal worries that her first assignment won’t go right.
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Ghosts of Amarana by Kurt Hunt  Time: 13m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 220
(High Fantasy) Lash helped destroy the city of Amarana for the revolution, but languishing in prison he feels remorse. Then someone comes to help him escape.
Grassland by T.S. McAdams1  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 235
(Alternate History Fantasy) In an Old West where people still worship pagan gods, Marcus plans to sneak away from his cattle drive to find the lost statue of Mithras his family once worshiped.
Gravity's Exile by Grace Seybold  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 219
(High Fantasy) Jeone has been descending the World Cliff for years, but she's never seen a town quite as strange as Shasten Dhu.
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His Wife and Serpent Mistress by Gillian Daniels  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 238
(Fantasy Adventure) The young Marquis has to marry for money, and he’s not quite sure how his new wife is going to cope with his mistress.
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I Have Been Drowned in Rain by Carrie Vaughn  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 223
(High Fantasy) Jared has almost brought the princess to safety, but he worries that Kat, the crazy women who accompanies them, might have betrayed them.
In Memory of Jianhong, Snake-Devil by Richard Parks  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 226
(Chinese Historical Fantasy; Pan Bao and Jing) Jing and her father climb a mountain to find and kill a Snake-Devil that has been killing people and goats, but she’s not exactly what they expected.
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In the Shade of the Pixie Tree by Rodello Santos  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 221
(High Fantasy) Bekka is apprentice to the local witch, and she's off to collect pixies. Joakem wants to walk with her, and she can't tell him no.
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Low Bridge! Or The Dark Obstructions by M. Bennardo  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 240
(Historical Fantasy) On the Erie Canal, a young man and his bride confront an author who doesn’t believe in the supernatural at all.
Men of the Ashen Morrow by Margaret Killjoy  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 218
(High Fantasy) In Laria, summer doesn’t end unless someone summons the god Hulokk, and he usually takes a human sacrifice. Sal is one of the best summoners, but she’s tired of losing friends.
Nightshade by J.W. Halicks1  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 222
(Dark Fantasy) At sunset, Ezekiel Nightshade, King of Night, rises from the earth and heads for an appointment with a dying woman. But her seven-year-old daughter bars the way.
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No Pearls as Blue as These by Benjanun Sriduangkaew  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 232
(High Fantasy) Tarangkaya made Bidaten into supersoldier from infancy, and she’s been content to serve them for years. Then her mistress takes a new bride who makes her think differently.
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Of Letters They Are Made by Jonathan Edelstein  Time: 21m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 228
(Alternate History Fantasy) Taharah’s magic makes language come alive for audiences, but she seeks knowledge of her people’s ancient, forgotten tongue.
On the Road to the Hell of Hungry Ghosts by Richard Parks  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 235
(Chinese Historical Fantasy; Pan Bao and Jing) Pan Bao, his daughter Jing, and their snake-devil friend, Mei Li, encounter a ghost who needs help. They usually expect to be paid for their sorcery, but the ghost is very persistent.
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Ora et Labora by Theodore McCombs1  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 229
(Post-Apocalypse) Obb is sure he’s not really “disordered,” but his family have sent him away to a monastery where the church forces people like him to learn math.
Out of the Woods by Marissa Lingen  Time: 13m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 218
(Historical Fantasy) Lovis uses her magic to help the resistance against the tyrannical brother of the king. When the king dies in battle, she has to make some hard decisions.
Proteus Lost by Tony Pi  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 217
(Historical Fantasy) In 1588, Filippo needs the shape-shifter codex he left with a friend, who should have known better than to try to use the codex by himself.
Red Bark and Ambergris by Kate Marshall  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 232
(High Fantasy) Sarai’s talent lies in scents, but she pursues poisons to get revenge on the queen who imprisoned her on this island.
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Requiem for the Unchained by C.A. Hawksmoor  Time: 21m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 217
(Steampunk/Horror) The narrator flies a lantern ship, a balloon with a special light that keeps away the ghosts that gather during storms. Out of money, she’s desperate enough to take a dangerous contract from a man she hates.
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Rivers Run Free by Charles Payseur  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 230
(High Fantasy) Four river spirits flee across the desert to escape the people who dammed them and find their way to the sea.
Suddenwall by Sara Saab  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 220
(High Fantasy) The city of Vannat offers forgiveness to former war criminals, but those it deems unworthy get trapped inside stone walls that appear out of nowhere.
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That Lingering Sweetness by Tony Pi  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 224
(Chinese Historical Fantasy; Candyman Ao) To undo some of the damage caused the last time he invoked zodiacal spirits, Ao needs to lift a pair of conflicting curses cast by two warring spirits.
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The Broken Karwaneer by Jeremy A. TeGrotenhuis1  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 231
(Fantasy Apocalypse) In a dying world, Orha hunts a band of raiders who’ve been killing families and stealing children.
The Fall of the Mundaneum by Rebecca Campbell  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 235
(Historical Fantasy) In the first days of World War I, young Oskar is left to manage the Mundaneum as the Germans approach. He’s nervous, but hopeful they’ll respect the institution and its priceless artifacts.
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The Fisherman and the Pig by Kameron Hurley  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 235
(Fantasy Adventure) Nev has been in hiding for eight years, so when some men offer him too good a deal to sell their fish, he suspects a trap.
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The Influence of the Iron Range by Marissa Lingen  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 237
(Alternate History Fantasy) Viola helps keep the 1888 election free of influence from Faery, which almost destroyed the country in 1876. In a little Minnesota town, she’s about to meet a stronger-than-expected adversary.
The Last Dinosaur Rider of Benessa County by Jeremy Sim  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 219
(Historical Slipstream) Twenty years ago, Jonas rode a Pleesaur back when the frontier was wild. Now he just wants enough money to go home.
The Mouth of the Oyster by Adam-Troy Castro and Alvaro Zinos-Amaro  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 239
(High Fantasy) Plague took the narrator’s vision, but now he has the opportunity to get new eyes. Eyes that might see narrowly but too well.
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The Shark God's Child by Jonathan Edelstein  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 222
(High Fantasy; Tasik) The shark god rises from under Mei’s island home, leaving all the inhabitants homeless or drowned. She escapes and finds a home, but the shark god still has plans for her.
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The Siret Mask by Marie Brennan  Time: 18m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 238
(Fantasy Adventure) Viorica attempts to steal the famed Şiret Mask from Codruţ, brother of her dear friend. There are lots of complications, not least of which that Codruţ expects someone to try to take it.
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The Wind's Departure by Stephen Case  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 240
(High Fantasy) Diogenes ought to be using the magician’s floating castle to help the emperor, but he feels obliged to honor his promise to restore Sylva’s body to her—even if it destroys the world.
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Think Of Winter by Eleanna Castroianni1  Time: 09m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 216
(High Fantasy) Since the Grey Men took his mother and the rest of the villagers away, Folu has hidden in the ruins of the cathedral. But winter is coming, and he doesn’t know how he’ll feed himself.
Trette's Bones by Grace Seybold  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 241
(Dark Fantasy) In a town where becoming an adult means surrendering a body part and getting a ghostly replacement, the narrator opts to sacrifice a finger, but their twin sister has something extreme in mind.
Two Bodies in Basting Stitch by Allison Jamieson-Lucy  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 227
(High Fantasy) The state cannot execute Sere for treason if she can prove that she’s “life-laced,” since that would kill her innocent lover too, but revealing it could ruin her lover’s life.
Whatever Knight Comes by Ryan Row2  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 226
(Fairy Tale) You are a knight cursed to kidnap maidens and the die trying to keep them when a knight comes to rescue them. Over and over.
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When We Go by Evan Dicken  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 223
(Mythic Fantasy) Because the gods abandoned her people, she has sworn to kill them. Now only one remains.
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Woe and Other Remedies by Michael Anthony Ashley  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 239
(High Fantasy Horror) The empire’s immortal nobles are hopelessly jaded, and Dejanira’s parties bring them excitement through the threat of death.
(Mainstream) William works for his eccentric uncle while other young Canadian men go off to World War I.

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