Friday, June 22, 2018

Three Dandelion Stars, by Jordan Kurella

★★★☆☆ Mixed

(High Fantasy Horror) More than anything, Shai wants to be with Amarine, but the wishes the swamp folk grant usually come at a high cost. (8,436 words; Time: 28m)

"," by (edited by Scott H. Andrews), appeared in issue 254, published on .

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

Pro: Shai gets her wish to marry her girlfriend, but Amarine languishes. Shai’s wish looks more and more selfish the longer the story goes on. The “star” that makes Amarine docile and content makes things even worse. The swamp-folk’s attack on the village leaves the two women even more vulnerable, and it’s depressing to see how hostile Shai’s brother and former friend become. There’s a good bit of tension, and the outcome is very uncertain, since Shai herself is at least partly at fault here we’re not sure up until the end how it will turn out.

Con: And then they just turn into swamp folk themselves, and Shai pretty much gets to be with Amarine forever.  Everyone else dies. The ending is just too easy, and Shai really hasn’t earned it at all.

It’s a little disappointing that Shai gets zero support from anyone else. The village itself is almost a cardboard villain.

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