Community of Magic Pens by E.D.E. Bell

On the heels of my previous read (which was a collection of four novellas), I am reviewing an anthology which(also) has a common theme. The idea is to write a story featuring a magical pen, and a LOT of authors have contributed to this work. I have encountered one or two in earlier anthologies.

It is quite fascinating that multiple people used the same elaborate theme to indicate the powers of the pen. The location and handling of it by the protagonists varied, but the concept stayed the same. This was both a positive as well as a negative thing, but it can provide some unique stories.

There are too many small narratives to provide a separate review for each, but on the whole, it was an entertaining collection. It has been written by people with varying backgrounds, and it shows in the narrative styles, which were all excellent in their own way. It primarily focuses on the power of the written word and what if the capacity came with even more magic. Due to some of the repetitive theme, I could not read it in one go but kept coming back to it at decent intervals.

My favourite story has to be of a machine who wanted a job selling historical artefacts on other planets. I did not expect the twist, which made it all the more fun to read. I would recommend this to people who like reading short stories with a slightly whimsical edge.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the review is entirely based on my own reading experience.

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