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Book Review

Book Cover

The Once and Future Moon


Authors: Various
Editor: Allen Ashley
Publisher: Eibonvale Press
264 pages
RRP: £8.99
ISBN: 978 1 908125 96 5
Publication Date: 18 October 2019

The Once and Future Moon (264 pages) is a themed anthology of short stories, all of which have some connection to the moon. The anthology was edited by Allen Ashley. The eighteen stories have not been previously printed elsewhere. While there were a few new authors, whose names I didn’t recognise, any reader of Eibonvale's output will be, mostly, in familiar territory.

The anthology contains no particular genre, for instance the first story 'Dr Cadwallader and the Lunar Cycle' is a homage to H.G. Well’s The First Men in the Moon (1901) and follows, roughly the same trajectory as to original, while tonally perfectly capturing Victorian language. It’s a fun, if not nuanced tale, of fantastical daring do.

That said, the majority of the stories, whilst referencing the moon could not be called science fiction. This is not really a problem as Eibonvale Press is inevitably interested in presenting genre bending/busting stories. Hulbert takes us on a flight of fancy and Turnbull shows us how quickly a fall from power can be experienced.

Ashley has done well to curate such an interesting collection and because of the high quality it is difficult to differentiate best to worst. Of course I have my favourites, but that tends to be authors, I am always partial to a bit of Douglas Thompson. That said, the anthology has introduced me to authors I didn’t know, but will look out for in the future.

The full list of included stories is:

Chris Edwards – Dr Cadwallader and The Lunar Cycle
Hannah Hulbert – The Changing Face of Selene
David Turnbull – The Erasing of Gagaringrad
A.N. Myers – Synthia
Simon Clark – A Faience of the Heart
Aliya Whiteley – Bars of Light
Terry Grimwood – Heavies
Stephen Palmer – White Face Tribe
Pauline E. Dungate – Moonstruck
Douglas Thompson – Dissolver
Alexander Greer – Lunar Gate
Nigel Robert Wilson – Dream-Time’s End
Gary Budgen – The Empties
Elana Gomel – Moonface
Anna Fagundes Martino – Between the Librations
Charles Wilkinson – To Sharpen, Spin
Thomas Alun Badlan – The Great Lunar Expedition
Adrian Chamberlin – The Eye of God


Charles Packer

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