A collection of nine short stories resulting from the "Red Adept Reviews Twists Contest."
“The Unbroken Mirror” by C.S. Marks: A prelude to the Alterra series
By far the longest story in this collection, Marks provides a refreshing change of pace from the other stories. Thus far we have had slightly futuristic, three contemporary pieces and now we are immersed with fantasy.
Though a prelude to a larger world, this story does a very credible job standing by itself. It does end up reading like a longer work more than a short story. "Sprawling" is the best word that comes to mind. Instead of presenting a neat little package, Marks lays out the framework for what promises to be the battle for Middle Earth part II.
If this were a standalone story serving as an introduction to an author's larger body of work, it's quite well done. It's well-written, engaging and fun. Marks does a good job presenting a rich fantasy world without being bogged down by wordiness. However, as a part of an anthology titled "Twists and Turns," it feels somewhat out of place.
Reviewed by Alain Gomez