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Veronica Schanoes

Veronica Schanoes is an American author of fantasy stories and an associate professor in the department of English at Queens College, CUNY. Her novella Burning Girls was nominated for the Nebula Award and the World Fantasy Award and won the Shirley Jackson Award for Best Novella in 2013. She lives in New York City. Burning Girls and Other Stories is her debut collection.

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Burning Girls and Other Stories: Great opening, strong close, uneven in between

Burning Girls and Other Stories by Veronica Schanoes

Veronica Schanoes’ collection Burning Girls and Other Stories (2021) started strong, hit a rough patch for a lengthy time, then ended strong. It is, therefore, the epitome of the mixed bag. Of the thirteen tales, I found one to be a standout, two others good, a few solid ones and a number that didn’t do anything for me. I won’t go through each one, but here are my responses to several of the stories.
“Among the Thorns”: This is the opening piece and is also the one I thought stood out amongst the collection. Not only is it a strong opening story, but it’s also a killer opening line and paragraph:

They made my father dance in thorns before they killed him.

I used to think that this was a metaphor, that they beat him with thorny vines, perhaps. But I was wrong about that.

They made him danc... Read More

SHORTS: Carroll, Dick, Howard, Schanoes, Divya

This week's roundup of free short SFF on the internet contains some great old and new stories.


“The Stolen Church” by Jonathan Carroll (2009, free at Conjunctions, also in The Woman Who Married a Cloud: The Collected Short Stories)

Tina and Stanley, married for five years, are in the lobby of a nondescript apartment building, waiting for an elevator to take them up to visit his parents. The only problem is, Stanley’s parents are dead. Tina can’t understand what Stanley is thinking, whether he’s ser... Read More