by Denise Little (Editor)
Cover Artist: Unknown at this time
Review by Carolyn Frank
DAW Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780756405106
Date: 05 August 2008 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Shopping is for everyone, including mages, werefolk, vampires, and your average ghost, goblin or troll. And where can they shop for their special needs? In Chicago, they shop at Enchantment Place. This collection of short stories takes place in and around a boutique mall that caters to everyone, including those more or less than human. Each story takes place in a different shop or place, typically featuring the shop owner or only employee, who may or may not be a normal non-magical mortal. Each one triumphs over adversary in their own way, sometimes romantic, sometimes adventurous, but always in some way fantastical.
In "Shining On" by Mary Jo Putney, an ex-combat veteran finds that a job as a shoe-shiner at Enchantment Place involves far more than just shining leather boots, unicorn hooves and such. In "The Face is Familiar" by Esther Friesner, the decidedly non-magical shop assistant in a store that sells familiar animals to witches has found her only solace in talking to the non-talking hamster by the check-out. When a malevolent sorcerer comes in wanting to buy the hamster, every being in the store finds out what happens when a witch and familiar make their amazing connection.
In "Heart's Fire" by Sarah Hoyt, when the non-magical daughter from a family of witches that sells magical jewelry is left to tend the store, a valuable jewel is stolen. Sent by her father to retrieve the stolen property, she triumphs over more than just a thief. In "The Devil You Know"by Susan Sizemore, a decidedly demonic young woman working hard to pass as mundane attempts to buy her mother a set of fairy wings for her birthday. In "Altar Ego"by Jody Lynn Nye, the proprietor of a shop where she sells altars and other accouterments of home-based places to worship is finding that objects and people with negative energy or attitudes are vanishing from sight.
In "Fire and Sweet Music" by Diane A.S. Stuckart, the owner of a perfumery finds that although her mother had inadvertently bequeathed her daughter's soul to the devil, she can make her own deals with demons. In "Make-A-Mortal" by Pamela Luzier, the were-bear owner of a shop catering to the children of the fantastic: unicorns, trolls, dragons and such, requires ingenuity to address the problems caused by an unhappy customer who happens to be a cross-eyed witch.
And so it goes for seventeen different tales by some of the biggest names writing fantasy today and by some deserving newer voices. If you love fantasy, if you enjoy well-written short stories and if you like to shop, this anthology is for you.