Fate’s Fables 1-8
By T. Rae Mitchell
This was read after being impressed by a short story I liked.
The book is eight novella length stories previously separately published. The quality of the prose is apparent at the start of the book as the character of Fate is setup and her journey to a fantasy land explained. The author generates eight mythic fairy tales at the start of east story, these contain a problem that has to be resolved or fixed. In the first half, they are generally fun and a romp to get through. But as the tales accumulate, bringing characters from past episodes forward, it becomes darker and heavier in tone. Soon romance becomes a major theme of the story and things become too serious.
The inherent problem with this form is that as a single (400 page) novel it lacks a narrative that can reach a conflict and resolution in the final act. Staying with lots of characters just makes things confusing and the ending not as rewarding as it could be.
It may have been better to read each episode separately over a longer period of time. It would also have helped if the stories were more self-contained. Still, this is an experienced author with sufficient skills to write compelling novels.