Now that I finished my book of short stories, I need a new source of short stories to review on Mondays. I thought I’d finish reviewing the short stories that were nominated for the Hugo Awards. I got all the Locus Award nominees reviewed, so it’s on to another award.
Published: some time in 2018 at Uncanny Magazine, where you can either read or listen to the story for free
Genre: fantasy short story
Setting: fairyland and the British Isles, some time ago
Summary: Short version: Rose MacGregor’s fairy lovers meet to remember her
Long version: The story is told as a series of reminiscences between a group of fae. Each on of them was Rose MacGregor’s lover at some point. They’re all used to loving and leaving behind a woman who pines after them. Instead they’re pining after Rose, even the pooka and the bull selkie. She used them all soundly, usually enticing them with a story about a lost sheep, and then sent them on their way.
Final thoughts: Oh such a fun story. Definitely for the adults among us, since all the sex is implied. If you’re too young and read the story, you’re going to miss most of the underlying threads since it’s all innuendo. Kingfisher (who is the pseudonym of Ursula Vernon when she’s writing for adults) puts in delightful bits of humor like this line:
“Excuse me! I am a pooka! We drown people! None of this waiting around for them to die of a broken heart! We are efficient!”
I’ve reread the story three more times just writing this review and it continues to be delightful. There’s even a bit at the end where we meet Rose in her 60s with a granddaughter who can probably trace her lineage back to the selkie. Go do yourself a favor and check it out – it’s short and free online.
Title comes from: A group of fae get together every year and drink to the memory of Rose MacGregor