rating: 4 of 5 stars
Mean Streets is one of the best anthologies I’ve read in a while. It only has four different pieces in it, but they’re all novellas, and all by strong, experienced writers. I don’t think any of them are here riding on someone else’s name on the book cover.
Jim Butcher’s “Warrior,” the first piece, is very good. It follows Harry and the Carpenter family after they experienced some major changes in the last Dresden novel. I could have stood a little more Molly, but Harry and Michael were the focus characters and they worked out some things that really needed to be dealt with. I’m glad I read this before the next Dresden novel, because I feel there’s important character development. I seriously recommend this book to all Dresden fans.
I haven’t read any of Simon R. Green’s novels, though I’ve heard of the Nightside series and thought about picking one up. If “The Difference a Day Makes” is typical, though, I may not bother. He is a good writer, so I’m not sure what it is that bothered me so much. I know that something framed as one of the nastiest things people could choose to do in this piece isn’t even in my top 10, but I feel there’s something else that I just can’t quite articulate yet.
I’ve read all three of Kat Richardson’s Greywalker novels and enjoyed them enough that I plan to keep reading. “The Third Death of the Little Clay Dog” is my favorite piece of her work, hands down. There’s more light, somehow, and that’s important to me.
“Noah’s Orphans” is my first exposure to Thomas E. Sniegoski, as far as I can recall. It was an interesting piece. I found myself wondering about Remy Chandler’s past, about how the character has developed. If there are novels featuring that character, I may give them a read. In any case, it brought up some interesting questions about faith and obedience. I think it would have been more personally relevant to me about 20 years ago, though.