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Chicks Kick Butt Cover Picture

Chicks Kick Butt

Edited by Rachel Caine &
Kerrie L. Hughes

Published 2011         343 pages

Reviewed by Georgia

Summary (from the book jacket)

Today’s women don’t stand around waiting for a hero. These days, women are quite capable of solving their own problems and slaying their own dragons (or demons, as the case may be).

In this all new anthology, Kerrie L. Hughes and New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine have collected original stories from thirteen of today’s most exciting urban fantasy and paranormal authors.

Each story features a strong heroine who kicks butt and takes names in a dangerous world and makes that world a better place for everyone in it – except of the bad guys, of course. And if she finds a bit of romance along the way, well, a little heat warms the heart and sharpens the mind … just as long as the man can keep up.

The Review:

Chicks Kick Butt is an anthology of thirteen original short stories featuring everything from Djinns to the Valkyries. As stated above this collection focus on young – or sometimes not so – heroines who have the admirable ability of solving their own problems or those of others in an eventful and sometimes quite hilarious way. Edited by Rachel Caine (of The Weather Wardens and The Morganville Vampires fame) and Kerrie L. Hughes this collection is all about the girl power attitude.

The authors/contributors are all recognized in their field. Here you will find stories from Rachel Caine, Karen Chance, Rachel Vincent, Lilith Saintcrow, P.N. Elrod, Jenna Black, Cheyenne McCray, Elizabeth A. Vaughan, Jeanne C. Stein, Carole Nelson Douglas, L. A. Banks, Susan Krinard and last but not least Nancy Holder. If the names aren’t enough to intrigue you, let us say that six stories focus on vampires, three stories on wereanimals, one story on djinns, one on demons, one on trackers and two on old legends. Not tempted enough? Hmm…

All these stories evolve around the same axis, i.e. of empowered women who start on an ordinary day and end up doing something extraordinary. All stories are well-written, having a beginning, middle and an end. All of them have the advantage of advertising each author’s individual way of writing, thus making it a varied and exciting anthology.

All sorts of genres and styles come together to form an adventurous, humorous and sometimes romantic mélange that aims to please and entertain a large group of readers. And at this point one should congratulate the editing team. It is usually their responsibility to ensure quality and not a trip to dullsville! This is accomplished firstly by allowing the authors to use as much space as needed in order to tell the story. Sometimes we read anthologies where the stories are cut off abruptly or wrapped up in a hurry because there is a page limit or a word limit etc. Nearly all of the times this is to the detriment of the story. It is nice to see that such rules do not apply here. As a result we have well-rounded stories. Another point in favour is the placing of each story in the book. One may think that it is not important, but if considered proportionally to music, one can draw the parallel of tracklisting to short-stories collection and realize that sometimes where a story is being put does make quite the difference. Here we are pleased to have a table of contents that ensures variety in genre and narrative, rendering the book vivacious and entertaining.

Each story has its quirks and perks. The most original was Monster Mash a Delilah Street Case by Carole Nelson Douglas, while the most hilarious , ensuring the fit of the giggles, was In Vino Veritas a Dorina Basarab Short by Karen Chance. Shiny by Rachel Caine bring back fond memories of The Weather Wardens, whereas Hunt by Rachel Vincent leaves quite an impact on the readers with its strong psychological twists. Monsters and Vampires Prefer Blondes by Lilith Saintcrow and P. N. Elrod respectively walk down the traditional vampire storyline, while Nine-Tenth of the Law by Jenna Black takes private investigating to another frightful level. Double Dead by Cheyenne McCray is a Night Tracker novella and you will love the opening statement. A Rose By Any Other Name Would Still Be Red by Elizabeth A. Vaughan paraphrasing Shakespeare will lead you to different times and different kind of fighting. Superman by Jeanne C. Stein and Wanted: Dead Or Alive by L. A. Banks tell us the stories of two fearless female vampires, while Mist by Susan Krinard takes us to the mythical Valkyries and Beyond The Pale by Nancy Holder takes Goethe’s work “The Erl King” to a new level!

Chicks Kick Butt has character and aims to entertain, amuse and arouse the reader’s curiosity. It is comforting to know that at the end of the book all these goals are achieved. There is also an introduction by Rachel Caine and at the end an appendix of mini biographies for all authors. Finally I will like to add that, if you are commuting, this book will make the coming-and-going bright as a sunny day.

LoveVampires Review Rating:

Review Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

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