Atlantis and Other Places
by Harry Turtledove
Cover Artist: Steve Stone
Review by Bill Lawhorn
Roc Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780451463647
Date: 07 December 2010 List Price $24.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
As noted from the title, there are two Atlantis stories. One at the beginning the other at the end of the book. "Audubon in Atlantis" tells the tale of the renowned naturalist and artist's trip to Atlantis in search of a honker. "The Scarlet Band" is a Holmes and Watson, I meant Helms and Walton, story. It also delves a little deeper into the House of Universal Devotion and its leader.
There are a couple science fiction stories. "The Genetics Lecture" is a short piece that has a standard Twilight Zone twist. "Someone is Stealing the Great Throne Rooms of the Galaxy" is a space cadet story. Of course the cadet is a hamster, in a hamster wheel driven starship, with a penchant for trouble.
There are two stories that are based on correspondence. "News from the Front" imagines WWII through the stories and headlines of modern-style 24 hours news cycle coverage of the war. "Uncle Alf" is a series of letters from occupied France in a world where Germany won WWI.
There are two Greek based stories. "The Daimon" is the reimagining of the Athenian attack on Syracuse and the fallout and consolidation of the Greece. "The Horse of Bronze" is a fantasy where Centaurs go in search of tin, and meet men for the first time.
There are a few stories that don't fit well. "Strange Bedfellows" is an odd tale. It is about the marriage of two high profile leaders. It is not a couple that you would expect, but it is definitely something that could only happen in Massachusetts. "The Catcher in the Rhine" is a chicks in chainmail story. "Farmers Law" is a mystery.
This is a good collection of stories. It is a nice mix of some of Turtledove's work splitting two adventures set in his Atlantis series which are the stronger in the collection. Because this is a single author's collection, there is no single theme. Turtledove's fans will enjoy this collection. Fans of his Atlantis series that may have missed the earlier publication of the Atlantean stories will not want to miss the opportunity to get access to the title-based stories.
One of the most interesting parts of Turtledove's anthologies are the introductions to each story. The introductions are both informative and amusing. They let the reader know the background, sometimes the source, of the story. These introductions are as well done as the ones in Reincarnations.