The imaginative tales that comprise this anthology showcase the talents of a wonderful collection of authors who have come to play in a universe where certain people can see beings who help confer amazing powers. The breadth of detail conveyed introduce fantastical situations, including the restoration of mobility to a paraplegic woman, magical protection conferred by humble peonies, mystical properties of perfume and a twist on the tale of Red Riding Hood are only a few of the intriguing stories that are showcased. I think that I am always most fascinated by those who can talk to animals and the different way creatures such as salamanders and Air sylphs can affect the world around them. Naturally, many of the stories are all too short and make one hope that some of the authors will contribute additional tales to another anthology such as this one. There are many new to me authors and I will definitely be on the lookout for other tales by them.
“Elementary” is an anthology of tales edited by Mercedes Lackey based upon the creative fantasy series that she has written which features the Elemental Masters. Each story combines the remarkable abilities wielded by those who can access powers related to Air, Fire, Earth and Water with settings in various historical eras. There are multiple cultures which demonstrate the universality of these powers which impact such disparate elements as Etruscan soldiers, Greek philosophers, the Spanish Armada, French diplomatic affairs, late 19th century America, and of course, Victorian England. The amazing creatures that are characteristic of the different Elements provide delightful twists on some well-known events.
In March 1987, Mercedes Lackey, a young author from Oklahoma, published her first novel, Arrows of the Queen. No one could have envisioned that this modest book would be the beginning of a fantasy career that would span decades and more than a hundred novels, with no signs of slowing yet.
And among Ms. Lackey's many novels, few are as critically-acclaimed and beloved as those of the Elemental Masters. The novels in this series are loosely based on classic fairy tales, and take place in a fantasy version of turn-of-the-century London, where magic is real and Elemental Masters control the powers of Fire, Water, Air and Earth.
Now the voices of other authors join Mercedes Lackey to add their own special touches to this delightful alternate history, in a world where magic is always just around the corner...