From the back of the book: Benjamin Tate, S C Butler, Jennifer Dunne, Barbara Ashford, Maria V Snyder, Kari Sperring, D B Jackson, Patricia Bray, Seanan McGuire, Juliet E McKenna, Laura Anne Gilman, Ian Tregillis, Avery Shade, Jackie Kessler, Anton Strout
The first bar, created by the Sumerians after they were given the gift of beer by the gods, was known as the Ur-Bar. Although it has since been destroyed, its spirit lives on. In each age there is one bar that captures the essence of the original Ur-Bar, where drinks are mixed with magic and served with a side of destiny and intrigue.
Science fiction and fantasy readers have long shown an affinity for a good "bar story". From TALES FROM GAVAGAN'S BAR and TALES FROM THE WHITE HART to the CALLAHAN'S CROSSTIME SALOON stories, bars and imaginative accounts just seem to go together.
Now some of today's most inventive scriveners have decided to belly up to the Ur-Bar and tell their own tall tales---from an alewife's attempt to transfer the gods' curse to Gilgamesh, to Odin's decision to introduce Vikings to the Ur-Bar...from the Holy Roman Emperor's barroom bargain, to a demon hunter who may just have met his match in the ultimate magic bar, to a bouncer who discovers you should never let anyone in after hurs in a world terrorized by zombies.....
I rarely have luck with anthologies. I think that's the norm for a lot of people based on reviews I've read here and there.
That said, I saw a review for this particular anthology. Can't remember who was so in favor of it, but it was a 'trusted agent' and I put it on the WWBL. Then B&N must have been having a heckuva sale and it was put in the shopping cart and on Mt Git'r'Read.
I think it only languished for a bit before I was in the mood for this type of read.
And what a swell decision! Every single story is amazing and well-written, completely different premise from the rest with only the Ur-Bar as the single theme tying everything together.
The book seems to move in a forward pattern from the past to the future and the sort of nil.
Anything more is a rehash of the 'Back of the Book', so will stop here. I really liked this book, glad that not all anthologies are pewp and happy to 'meet' some new authors to add to the WWBL.
Five belly up to the Ur-Bar beans....