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Books 1-10.
Books 11-20.
21. The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin.
22. Rebellion at Christiana by Margaret Hope Bacon.
23. American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang.

24. This Sweet Sickness by Patricia Highsmith. Highsmith explores romantic obsession in this novel, with the character of David Kelsey, who is so in love with Annabelle that it doesn't matter that she's married someone else; he keeps a house for them both, waiting patiently for what he believes is her inevitable return to him. At the start, his conviction here seems only a bit delusional, but not dramatically worse than that of any other person unwilling to let go of a relationship that they didn't want to end. Part of the reason for this is that Annabelle herself is pretty wishy-washy about the whole thing, giving Kelsey--perhaps unwittingly--little pieces of hope to cling to. When things start to tip it's mostly accidental, but Kelsey gradually falls deeper into a spiral of delusion, fragmented identity, and violence. Thematically this is not that different from some of the Ripley books, although the romantic obsession is a new angle; and yet somehow it still reads as fresh, with a protagonist whose frustration and denial is identifiable despite his actions being abhorrent. This novel is much stronger on character than A Game for the Living was, and it's both sadder and more horrifying as a result.


David J. Schwartz
Mumble Herder

Recent and Forthcoming



US Edition

UK Edition


"The Sun Inside," part of the Electrum Novella Series from Rabit Transit Press

Short Stories:

"Escape to Bird Island" at The King's English, Winter 2008-9 Issue

"Bear In Contradicting Landscape" in Polyphony 7, Coming Soon

"MonstroCities" in Tumbarumba: A Frolic of Intrusions

"Mike's Place" in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet #22

"Proof of Zero" in Spicy Slipstream Stories, Out Now!!

"The Somnambulist" in Paper Cities: An Anthology of Urban Fantasy, Out Now!!

"Oma Dortchen and the Pillar of Story" in Farrago's Wainscot, Summer 2007

"The Ichthyomancer Writes His Friend with an Account of the Yeti's Birthday Party" in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet Number 13, Fall 2003 (Honorable Mention, The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror: Seventeenth Annual Collecion); Reprinted in The Best of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet


""Stardust" at Strange Horizons


"On Making Noise: Confessions of a Quiet Kid" in Brothers and Beasts: An Anthology of Men on Fairy Tales edited by Kate Bernheimer



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