Flipped Fables edited by SA Clements
Anthologies are always tricky because you can get such a mix of authors writing such a mix of stories, but I think in this case, it paid off. Not every story is a shining star, but none of them are folding in on themselves either, plus they cover a range of tastes so there should be one story sure to satisfy everyone.
The Man Who Cried Werewolf by Kiernan Kelly
A cute, if not completely predictable tale. Since this story is probably one of the most familiar among an American audience, I'm glad it started the series as it held the fewest surprises. It's a straight forward piece that plays out like you'd expect. Who's up for a romp in the hay?
A Sheepherder in Fabulous Clothing by Rob Rosen
If you like fabulous, you'll like this one. It's not completely to my taste, but it does give a good consideration of what makes a man, men who love men who dress as women, and forming your own identity. I feel like I should be more familiar with the tale this is based on, but nothing comes to mind. Still, it stands alone without requiring prior knowledge, except for maybe about drag queens.
Shifter 2.0 by Winnie Jerome
Rather than be a retelling of the Mouse and the Lion, this story just goes with the vague gist of a lion and a mouse in the same story. Daniel doesn't fit the old-school style of shifter that his families believes he should be, but he doesn't fit alot of stereotypes about shifters. He's a vegetarian lion who rips mattresses, clogs the drain with his hair, and requires odorless soaps. Good thing he's met Alex, owner of one mouse and chef at a vegetarian restaurant. He doesn't seem to mind Daniel's quirks, as long as Daniel won't mind his...
Bad Hair Day by Clare London
Rapunzel gets a gender swap and an attitude in this take of "Let Down Your Long Hair." The Prince is persistent through to the end, even if he starts of as a tender whippersnapper and ends up a hero (or, well, you tell me). The end is rather cheesy, but these are fairy tales, so I suppose it's forgiven...this time! ^Insert witch cackle here.
Wild Fox Chase by Misa Izanaki
This particular story is based on a Chinese tale and I like the concept and most the writing. The sex was kinda awkward though, and the dialogue during the sex worse. But other than that a perfectly enjoyable story, and our kitsune (but of course), is playful and keen and has an inner dialogue that fits the fox.
Sweet Persuasion by Angelia Sparrow
In which Zeph and Apollo, two gods of old (Greek, I think, but I'm always confusing them), challenge each other to see who can get a shepherd to remove his clothes first using their gifts. It doesn't really matter who the winner is, as they decided to pursue the boy that evening, which the both have off. For having a threesome, it's an incredibly sweet tale with some hot hillside sex.
The Nature of Love by Anah Crow
This is one of my favorite stories among this group. I wasn't familiar with the tale it was based on (The Cat and Venus), but I'm not sure familiarity would help/hinder the story since it was changed rather thoroughly in very excellent ways. I never knew what to expect next and the author never disappointed. This actually has me interested in what more she wrote.
Court and Country by GS Wiley
A new take on Country Mouse and City Mouse, we have two boys who grew up together, one who stayed in the country, preferring farming and hard work, while one moved into the city and joined the court. Before they part ways, they share a kiss, but nothing else, and then many years go by. They meet up together when the Courtier comes to visit the country and their tale unravels from there. How can two lovers with so very different tastes survive? It's a cute story. You won't be surprised by the ending, but I don't think we're meant to be.
The Cock and the Jewel by Sean Michael
Michael is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. He brings such great characters to life and explores facets of life that I don't face while still making the characters accessible. Here we meet a tattoo artist who is too inked and pierced for his last boyfriend, who he is still trying to get over. So the question is, will the cock give up on the jewel, or will he find his true worth?