Tales from Alternate Earths
Tales from Alternate Earths is an anthology of eight alternate-history short stories collected by Inklings Press. Featuring scenarios ranging from how time travel contributed to the extinction of the dinosaurs to if China had converted to Islam and discovered South America, the authors create an intriguing series of thought-provoking ‘what-ifs’ guaranteed to leave their readers wondering, peopled by compelling characters that were consistent and relatable, including the non-human ones. The ability to sketch in an entire culture in the backdrop to a short story was just one of the aspects of the writing in this anthology that impressed me.
I don’t read a lot of short stories, as my general objection is that I get into a short story about the time it ends. This was not the case with this anthology; the stories were remarkably well-crafted, with premise and characterisation meshing to bring me in from the opening page. The authors added to that achievement by bringing an enormous depth of imagination to their stories, creating scenarios that entertained, worried, and best of all, opened up ideas I’d never considered before. I thoroughly enjoyed each of the stories, and I’ll be haunting several people’s websites looking for their next work after reading this!