Joe Sherry says very nice things about Scenting the Dark and Other Stories over on Adventures in Reading. Here’s an excerpt.
There are only eight stories in this 80 page collection from Mary Robinette Kowal, but there is not a wasted word here. The stories of Scenting the Dark and Other Stories should delight readers as much as they delighted me. With two novels and more short fiction pending, you’ll want to pay attention to Mary Robinette Kowal.
I’ve been seeing reports that people have received their copies of Scenting the Dark and Other Storiesfrom Subterranean, which is very cool. YetiStomper has a particularly glowing review, which covers each of the stories and finishes by saying:
All in all, Scenting the Dark makes it clear that Kowal can do in 5 pages what other authors can’t do in 50. It’s going to be interesting to see what she does with 300 or so pages to play with in her debut novel, Shades of Milk and Honey, due out from Tor this summer. I expect huge things.
What? You don’t think I’m spoiling the surprise that our folks are getting copies do you? I’d be killed if I didn’t give them one.
The other cool thing is… well, collection includes an introduction by John Scalzi, which I knew, but today is the first time I read it. Somehow I didn’t realize that it was on the order page for Scenting the Dark, you have to scroll down to see it. Scalzi makes me weepy and blush all at the same time. He says some very, very kind things.
Campbell Award–winner Kowal presents a broad spectrum of stories in her chapbook-slim first collection. The heartbreaking “Just Right,” in which a family struggles with a child’s strange behavior, isn’t speculative at all. “Death Comes but Twice” edges into dark fantasy, while blind perfumer Penn is stalked by an enormous predator in SF horror story “Scenting the Dark.” The deepest tale is “Some Other Day,” in which a young scientist struggles to undo the terrible consequences of her father’s well-meant work, while “Jaiden’s Weaver” is a sweet story about nurturing and caring for a creature others think deformed. Kowal’s stories don’t always plumb the depths of speculation or characters, but when they do the results are often stirring. This excellent introduction to her work is likely to make her new fans. (Nov.)
What we tried to do with this was to put together a miniature collection of the stories which are hard to find or have never been printed in physical form. Which means that you are getting my very first published story, ever, “Just Right” all the way up through “Jaiden’s Weaver” which came out online earlier this year.
Subterranean is running a 50% off sale and one of the titles is my collection “Scenting the Dark and Other Stories.”
We’ve been receiving a ton of requests that we run one of our 50% off sales, which we haven’t done in quite some time. Tim and I have carved a little time out of the SubPress schedule to handle the increased level of orders that usually accompanies one of these sales, so here goes. The rules are simple:
1. The special runs until the end of the day July 3, 2009.
2. You must buy at least 5 different titles to qualify for the sale prices. There is no the maximum number of titles you may order.
3. You may buy only one copy of a given title.
4. Your shopping cart total and automatic email confirmation won’t reflect the sale price. Don’t worry, we’ll apply the proper discount when processing your order.
5. If you’re using PayPal, do NOT go through our site. Please email us for an invoice.
6. Please note that only the titles listed below are part of the sale, and only editions with cover prices of $150 or less are included.
7. We’re not able to offer retroactive discounts on titles, or combine this special with any other coupons, specials, or savings certificates.
Today was long, but very good. I got the ARCs for Scenting the Dark in the mail, which was pretty darn exciting. I wasn’t looking for them to arrive, so I hauled them up to my production meeting although I did not actually give in and show them off. Here they are, next to the signature sheets.
From there I swung by the apartment to collect Peter and we went to see August: Osage County. Rob was supposed to join us, but then couldn’t so I gave his ticket to an old puppeteer friend who I hadn’t spent time with in ages. It was great catching up although I think that bored Peter. He reports that the play was good. I’m pleased, I must say, by the fact that my nephew wasn’t put off by being taken to a pretty heavy bit of theater. Bleakly funny though it is.
We went out for Italian for dinner and then came back to the apartment so I could get some work done. He’s used to having his xbox 360 so is a little restless in the apartment. We wound up going for a walk around 9:00, up to the Hungarian Pastry shop and then around the Columbia campus, just shooting the breeze.
It was a good day. If only I didn’t still have work to do.
Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce you to my first collection, Scenting the Dark and Other Stories.Â I’ve loved Subterranean Press for a long time now and can’t describe how ecstatic I am about this little book. The cover art is an original by Sandro Castelli and the book design is by Gail Cross. You can’t see the interior yet, but in pdf form it makes me long to have the pages in my hands. So beautiful.
We here at SubPress are fans of elegant small collections such as Antiquities by John Crowley or The Devil in the Details by James P. Blaylock and Tim Powers. Our latest offering fits solidly in that mode. Scenting the Dark and Other Stories, the debut hardcover by Campbell Award-winner Mary Robinette Kowal packs a powerful 25,000 words into its roughly 100 pages. Do yourself a favor and check out one of our finest new short story writers â€” and novelist, as Mary just sold a pair to Tor (Congrats!)
Mary Robinette Kowalâ€™s â€œScenting the Darkâ€ (Apex Online-Aug. 24) is enchanting, if not for the story itself, then for the intriguing use of a blind main character. An apt metaphor for a human exploring a new planet with only a few supports, this tale of space tragedy is textually vibrant, all without using the sense of sight.
Apex has my short story Scenting the Dark up in their new online issue. For those who aren’t familiar with Apex, they do SF Horror.
Here’s the teaser on mine.
Lifting the stopper from the vial to his nose, Penn inhaled slowly. Against the neutral backdrop of his shipâ€™s cleanroom, he picked out aromas of quince, elderberry, and bright Martian soil that hinted of blood, with undercurrents of cinnamon and Zeta Epsilonâ€™s fragrantly sweet longgrass. He sighed, blowing the scents out again. The perfume was still out of balance.
(Tor Books – July 14 2020) Mary Robinette Kowal continues her Hugo and Nebula award-winning Lady Astronaut series, following The Calculating Stars and The Fated Sky, with The Relentless Moon. The Earth is coming to the boiling point as the climate disaster of the Meteor strike becomes more and more clear, but the political situation is already overheated. Riots and […]