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The Scent of Tears (Tales of the Apt) by…

The Scent of Tears (Tales of the Apt)

by Adrian Tchaikovsky

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received a free ebook of this title as part of LT's Early Reviewers project. I confess that I misunderstood that this would be a collection of stories in a world that Tchaikovsky had written a whole series about. To that end, I suspect my enjoyment would have been much higher were I familiar with the world.

That said, it seems a good sign that I enjoyed these stories as much as I did. While I did experience some confusion, the variety on display gave me more than enough to dig my teeth into. Even without this set of stories, the reader can see how the authors play with some of the framework of Tchaikovsky's world while also poking at our own real world society's preoccupations.

Unlike other anthologies I've read, I found the writing here to be uniformly strong with the only noticeable differences being those which seemed intentional. For instance, some stilted dialogue here and there could throw off the reader but seems to serve the story or character instead of being a blight.

I appreciated the varied length of stories and found that the ordering and pacing gave the entire collection a rhythm that felt intentional and propulsive.

For fans of the world these tales take place in, this should be a wonderful collection of stories. ( )
  alexezell | Dec 30, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This was a free copy from the LibraryThing Early Reviewers programme in exchange for a review.

This is my first foray into Tchaikovsky’s world (and writing); The Scent of Tears comprises 11 short stories set in the world of the Apt; only the first and last story are by Tchaikovsky himself, the other 9 are by other authors. The world that these stories are set in is an intriguing blend of steampunk science fiction and fantasy: humanity is divided into various kindren, all partaking of the nature of a different insect species. The world is divided into the Apt - people who understand and use technology and cannot use or comprehend magic, and the Inapt - those who use magic and cannot comprehend or use technology (even a door handle will defeat them). Magic is on a downturn, and the Apt are in the ascendent.

I really liked this collection; as with many of the kindren, the stories were sharp and often had a sting in the tail. I was reminded of some of Dunsany’s earlier stories (the ones that end badly) and I suspect there’s some influence from Dahl (I’m ashamed to say I’ve never read any although I have The Complete Short Stories Vol. 1 in the tbr pile) but I have memories of Tales of the Unexpected from the TV.

  Maddz | Dec 28, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I had not read any of the novels set in the realm of Apt and I must admit this short story anthology made me interested in exploring books in that world. Unfortunately the stories by the author of the series weren't my favourite featured in the collection. Overall I would recommend this collection as the stories are interesting, with different perspectives and themes explored within. ( )
  Cfraser | Dec 22, 2018 |
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