Xanadu 3
Edited by Jane Yolen
Review by James Walton

I find it dismaying that certain poorly conceived and executed fantasy anthologies are up to almost 20 volumes while an excellent product like Jane Yolen's Xanadu is allowed to disappear after a mere three outings. I didn't know the Xanadu series existed until I spotted one on the remainder shelf at a bookstore.

But, as someone pointed out to me, there is a much larger market for wishfullfilment vignettes than for well written stories. Sigh.

As you may have guessed, I greatly enjoyed the offerings in Xanadu 3. It is an anthology of original fantasy short stories and poetry. They are well written and for the most part very fresh.

My favorite stories from Xanadu 3 are "The Man Who Loved the River" by Jo Clayton and "The Hunter and the Stag" by Astrid Julian.

Not every story was a winner. I failed to understand the point of Richard Rowand's "Residual Flight," and I could have done without "Old Woman Who Created Life" by Josepha Sherman. Jeremy Beckett's "A Report Concerning the Predator Population in the Northern Part of the Forest" (a retelling of "Little Red Riding Hood") made me shrug and wonder why it was included.

I intend to search for copies of Xanadu 1 and 2.

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