Other Arms Reach Out to Me: Georgia Stories, Michael Bishop (Fairwood Press/Kudzu Planet 978-1-933846-65-1, $17.99, 238pp, tp) June 2017. [Order from Fairwood Press, 21528 104th St. Ct. E, Bonney Lake WA 98391 (www.fairwoodpress.com).]
Other Arms Reach Out to Me, Michael Bishop’s new collection of Georgia Stories, sits just enough askew from mainstream notions of reality to read like Southern Gothic, whether he’s dealing with spinster nuns, the many kinds of lunacy in love, or an odd folk tradition for displaying laundry. Even when the arms are human, they jolt you out of your comfort zone enough to empathize with the guy (seen here in “The Russian Agent”) pummeled by so many mixed emotions, his lips feel like “a malign demon had rubbed them with a blade of dry ice.”
Faren C. Miller, Contributing Editor, worked full-time for Locus from 1981 to 2000, when she pulled up stakes and moved to Prescott, Arizona (a “mile-high city” not as widely known as that one in Colorado) with the man she subsequently married, Kerry Hanscom. She continues to review SF, fantasy, and horror — enjoying, analyzing, then forgetting all the details on a regular basis — and hopes to keep doing it for many years to come. Author of one fantasy, The Illusionists (Warner 1991), she is working on another which she’s confident will be finished before the next millennium rolls around.
This review and more like it in the November 2017 issue of Locus.