Black, Holly; Kushner, Ellen -- Welcome to Bordertown

First Bordertown collection in -- well -- the in-story gimmick is that Bordertown slipped out of phase for thirteen days, except, whoops, in our world it was thirteen years. So you'll still catch some of your old friends from the old collections, unchanged; but they're dealing with a sudden influx of kids with iPhones and Nintendos. But check it: an influx of kids who grew up hearing that there used to be a place called Bordertown, they thought they'd never get there... So, a mix of the old Bordertown authors (Yolen, Bull, Shetterly, de Lint) and fantasy newcomers (Tim Pratt, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Catherynne Valente, Cory Doctorow). Seriously, it's so meta you could bite your lip.

Smartass gimmicks aside (and the Doctorow story aside, because he's constitutionally incapable of not smarting ass) this has some good stories in it. And some very good poetry. Also some stories that are just okay. Par for the Borderlands course, I suppose. The stories brush past each other in a way that's occasionally interesting but not really genre-changing. (I don't remember whether that's par for the course; been too long since I read the old collections.)

I think I have never been in the Bordertown target audience. My adolescence doesn't fit the metaphor; or else, as a so-called adult, I don't fit the ending. (The opening story does nod to the "Bordertown isn't for me" angle, and I appreciate that, but I can't get seventeen-year-old-me's take on it.) So whatever's YA about this doesn't quite satisfy me, and everything knowing-adult strikes me as clunky. I enjoyed the stories but at a distance. I'll recommend the poetry direct, though.

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