Firebirds Rising ed by Sharyn November.
Firebird/Penguin Group: NY, 2006.

This is an awesome collection of stories. Each fantasy story has a social issue at its core. All with teen protagonists. Some with specifically teen concerns. Despite the obvious social issues, none of the stories seem to be only written for the issue. Most of the stories are also realistic. (Kara Dalkey's Hives is too realistic; I can see it happening too near in the future). Short stories always leave me wanting to know more. This one even more so-I want to find more of the authors' works.

To me Hives is one of the highlights. I'll Give You My Word by Diana Wynne Jones (a child fighting evil with words) and In the House of Seven Librarians by Ellen Klages (librarians continuing an old abandoned library and raising a child there) also struck a chord. Wintermoon Wish by Sharon Shinn has perhaps a historical feel. The House on the Planet by Tanith Lee has a few themes since it is about a community changing through time. All in all an excellent book! It's now one of my favorite short story collections-although I haven't read Firebird (its predecessor) yet.

My one concern is that Tamora Pierce's Huntress starts the book. It does grab the reader's attention, but it is also shocking and violent. Despite being the first story, it does not set the tone for the book, and I believe it should have been further into the book. I'm not against the story (I have in fact written in defense of Tamora Pierce's use of violence.), just concerned it will put people off and keep them from reading an excellent collection.

authors-Francesca Lia Block, Emma Bull, Kara Dalkey, Pamela Dean, Charles de Lint, Carol Emshwiller, Alan Dean Foster, Alison Goodman, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Tanith Lee, Kelly Link, Patricia A. McKillip, Sharon Shinn

related-teen groups, hiding identity, alien/native companions and laborers, courting, bonding, little people, the power of words, progress, new technology, poverty, raising the next generation, folklore, local legend, fanciful creatures, teen suicide and alienation/isolation, racism, slavery, pioneers, settlement of another planet, land regeneration, belief systems, forms of communicating, mining, self-sacrifice

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