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Unfettered: Tales by Masters of Fantasy

by Shawn Speakman (Editor)

Other authors: Daniel Abraham (Contributor), Jennifer Bosworth (Contributor), Peter V. Brett (Contributor), Terry Brooks (Contributor), Jacqueline Carey (Contributor)17 more, Blake Charlton (Contributor), David Anthony Durham (Contributor), Lev Grossman (Contributor), Kevin Hearne (Contributor), Robert Jordan (Contributor), Mark Lawrence (Contributor), Todd Lockwood (Contributor), Naomi Novik (Contributor), Peter Orullian (Contributor), Robert V.S. Redick (Contributor), Patrick Rothfuss (Contributor), R.A. Salvatore (Contributor), Brandon Sanderson (Contributor), Michael J. Sullivan (Contributor), Eldon Thompson (Contributor), Carrie Vaughn (Contributor), Tad Williams (Contributor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Iron Druid Chronicles (short story "The Chapel Perilous", 0.1), Unfettered (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3121263,814 (3.65)10
You define life or it defines you. In Shawn Speakman's case, it was both. Lacking health insurance and diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2011, Shawn quickly accrued a massive medical debt that he did not have the ability to pay. That's when New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks offered to donate a short story that Shawn could sell to help alleviate those bills--and suggested he ask the same of his other writer friends. Unfettered is the result: an anthology built in order to relieve that debt, featuring 23 short stories by Patrick Rothfuss, Terry Brooks, Tad Williams, Carrie Vaughn, Jacqueline Carey, Peter V. Brett, Peter Orullian, R. A. Salvatore, Todd Lockwood, Black Charlton, Daniel Abraham, Kevin Hearne, Mark Lawrence, David Anthony Durham, Jennifer Bosworth, Robert V.S. Redick, Eldon Thompson, Naomi Novik, Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson, Michael J. Sullivan, Lev Grossman, Terry Brooks, and, of course, Shawn Speakman. With the help of stalwart friends and these wonderful short stories, Shawn has taken the gravest of life's hardships and created something magical. Unfettered is not only a fantastic anthology in its own right, but it's a testament to the generosity found in the science fiction and fantasy community--proof that humanity can give beyond itself when the need arises. After all, isn't that the driving narrative in fantasy literature?… (more)
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» See also 10 mentions

English (10)  German (1)  All languages (11)
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
One of the better Fantasy anthologies I have read in awhile, that included many of my personal favorite authors. I had lucked out and was able to get a special Phoenix ComiCon edition of this book that had like 5 of the stories by themselves, three authors of which had signed it. Overall, I enjoyed most of the stories within, though, like in all collections, there seem to be one or two that just don't agree with me. It is great when authors are able and willing to help put a collection together, as this one - which was to help raise funds for medical bills for Speakman. ( )
  Ralphd00d | May 4, 2021 |
There are a lot of famous names in this short story collection, with stories from some famous fantasy series. From a name standpoint alone, this is a great, top of the list short story collection. I thought the quality overall was good, with a couple of issues. With two 'Did not finish' (DNF) stories which should have been 'did not read', the quality is actually fairly decent.

In order, here are my thoughts on the stories.
"Imaginary Friends" by Terry Brooks - a very nice story that is the inspiration for the Knight of the Word series, with different characters. Good.
"How Old Holly Came to Be" by Patrick Rothfuss - a story from the perspective of a holly tree. Ok, strange.
"The Old Scale Game" by Tad Williams - not the editor's fault, but I've read this story 2 or 3 times before, it is available in ebook edition as a standalone, is offered free as a Kindle book, etc. I think I enjoyed it the first time.
"Game of Chance" by Carrie Vaughn - ok
"The Martyr of the Roses" by Jacqueline Carey - well written, unique style, good.
"Mudboy" by Peter V. Brett - nice to see a story about Briar, but this really seemed like a repeat origin story. Ok.
"The Sound of Broken Absolutes" by Peter Orullian. The music references went way over my head, but this was still fascinating. Good.
"The Coach With the Big Teeth" by R. A. Salvatore. Weird, but one for everyone who didn't excel at Little League. Ok.
"Keeper of Memory" by Todd Lockwood - good, esp. if you've read any of the novels.
"Heaven in a Wild Flower" by Blake Charlton - I get the premise, just really strange. Ok.
"Dogs" by Daniel Abraham - you may be offended if you are a dog lover.
"The Chapel Perilous" by Kevin Hearne. Atticus does Atticus things way back in the past. Kind of short and lacking.
"Select Mode" by Mark Lawrence - from his Prince of Thorns books. 12 year old killer kid, not my favorite.
"All the Girls Love Michael Stein" by David Anthony Durham - a cat story, so much better than "Dogs". Good.
"Strange Rain" by Jennifer Bosworth - DNF, quit reading after 2 pages.
"Nocturne" by Robert V.S. Redick - another music theme, I kind of wish I hadn't read to the end.
"Unbowed" by Eldon Thompson - a dark origin story from his novels. Good, now I want to read his novels.
"In Favour with Their Stars" by Naomi Novik - Temeraire in space! Good.
"River of Souls" by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson - yes, actual Wheel of Time content! This was cut from A Memory of Light and I can see why. Short and kind of lacking, but a Wheel of Time story is good.
"The Jester" by Michael J. Sullivan - Hadrian and Royce go dungeon delving. Good.
"The Duel" by Lev Grossman - short and to the point. Good.
"Walker and the Shade of Allanon" by Terry Brooks. Walker and Allanon, how can you go wrong? But... this read like a scene from one of the Shannara books I'd already read and learned absolutely nothing new.
"The Unfettered Knight" by Shawn Speakman - DNF, wish I hadn't started it, actually offensive. I was excited because it is about vampire hunters and I love those, then it got offensive and I had to stop. ( )
  Karlstar | Jan 20, 2021 |
As with most anthologies, this one was a hit and miss, with more misses. Some were unreadable and others were just too inserted in the authors' worlds for me to enjoy. That said, some stories really made me want to know more about the world where they come from. ( )
  ladyars | Jan 4, 2021 |
I wanted to love it, I really did. I just can't get into short stories. ( )
  MegRT10 | Dec 29, 2020 |
The Chapel Perilous by Kevin Hearne

48 points/100 (2.5 stars/5).

Atticus tells the tale of how he recovered the lost grail.

Technically this tale takes place chronologically after The Eye of Horus though this was written before it came out. This story takes place simply for Hearne to tell us his character is so cool because his main character did cool famous things in the past. If this was just the tale of Atticus recovering a magic instrument from some necromancer, it would still be a decent story, but because it is the grail it is supposed to be somehow better. It doesn't make it any better, it just makes it more annoying.

This is a rather unnecessary short story that overall adds nothing to the story. It is just a side tale of life prior to the series.
  keikii | Jan 23, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Speakman, ShawnEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abraham, DanielContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bosworth, JenniferContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brett, Peter V.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brooks, TerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Carey, JacquelineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Charlton, BlakeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Durham, David AnthonyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grossman, LevContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hearne, KevinContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jordan, RobertContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lawrence, MarkContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lockwood, ToddContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Novik, NaomiContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Orullian, PeterContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Redick, Robert V.S.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rothfuss, PatrickContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Salvatore, R.A.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sanderson, BrandonContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sullivan, Michael J.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thompson, EldonContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Vaughn, CarrieContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Williams, TadContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lockwood, ToddCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Pain shared, my brother, is pain not doubled but halved.
- Neil Gaiman, Anansi Boys
What are years to me? Like pain, they pass unnoticed.
- Jay Lake, Kalimpura
Dedication
For those with cancer and those who stand by them. 
Who battle together and show no quarter.
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Wikipedia in English (4)

You define life or it defines you. In Shawn Speakman's case, it was both. Lacking health insurance and diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2011, Shawn quickly accrued a massive medical debt that he did not have the ability to pay. That's when New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks offered to donate a short story that Shawn could sell to help alleviate those bills--and suggested he ask the same of his other writer friends. Unfettered is the result: an anthology built in order to relieve that debt, featuring 23 short stories by Patrick Rothfuss, Terry Brooks, Tad Williams, Carrie Vaughn, Jacqueline Carey, Peter V. Brett, Peter Orullian, R. A. Salvatore, Todd Lockwood, Black Charlton, Daniel Abraham, Kevin Hearne, Mark Lawrence, David Anthony Durham, Jennifer Bosworth, Robert V.S. Redick, Eldon Thompson, Naomi Novik, Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson, Michael J. Sullivan, Lev Grossman, Terry Brooks, and, of course, Shawn Speakman. With the help of stalwart friends and these wonderful short stories, Shawn has taken the gravest of life's hardships and created something magical. Unfettered is not only a fantastic anthology in its own right, but it's a testament to the generosity found in the science fiction and fantasy community--proof that humanity can give beyond itself when the need arises. After all, isn't that the driving narrative in fantasy literature?

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Book description
Fantasy anthology including works from the following: 

The Shade of Allanon by Terry Brooks (a Shannara tale);
Imaginary Friends by Terry Brooks (a precursor to the Word/Void trilogy);
How Old Holly Came To Be by Patrick Rothfuss (a Four Corners tale);
River of Souls by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson (a Wheel of Time tale);
The Old Scale Game by Tad Williams;
Martyr of the Roses by Jacqueline Carey (a precursor to the Kushiel series);
Dogs by Daniel Abraham;
Mudboy by Peter V. Brett (a Demon Cycle tale);
Nocturne by Robert V. S. Redick;
The Sound of Broken Absolutes by Peter Orullian (a Vault of Heaven tale);
Untitled by Geno & R.A. Salvatore;
Keeper of Memory by Todd Lockwood (a Summer Dragon tale);
Game of Chance by Carrie Vaughn;
The Lasting Doubts of Joaquin Lopez by Blake Charlton;
The Chapel Perilous by Kevin Hearne (an Iron Druid tale);
Select Mode by Mark Lawrence (a Broken Empire tale);
All the Girls Love Michael Stein by David Anthony Durham;
Strange Rain by Jennifer Bosworth (a Struck epilogue tale);
Unbowed by Eldon Thompson (a Legend of Asahiel tale);
Untitled by Naomi Novik (a Temeraire tale);
The Jester by Michael J. Sullivan (a Riyria Chronicles tale);
The Duel by Lev Grossman (a Magicians tale);
The Unfettered Knight by Shawn Speakman (an Annwn Cycle tale);
and artist Todd Lockwood, who donated artwork as well as a story.
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