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MAGIC by Isaac Asimov

MAGIC

The Final Fantasy Collection

By Isaac Asimov

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-06-105205-1
Publisher: HarperCollins

Another posthumous anthology from the science fiction grandmaster (1920-92), this time of previously uncollected stories and writings on fantasy--though Asimov uses examples from science fiction freely and makes no rigid distinction between fantasy and science fiction. Of the 11 stories, 8 belong to the familiar series featuring George and his tiny demons, Azazel, depending heavily on puns and jokes for their impact; in another, the Black Widowers interview Batman; while two are light, amusing fables. "On Fantasy," 13 pieces of mild criticism and commentary, includes introductions to books whose titles receive only passing mention and which remain un-footnoted by the publishers. Meanwhile, the nine pieces "On Writing Fantasy" incline toward general remarks rather than Asimov's usual prescriptive, avuncular how-tos aimed at wannabe fictioneers. Although Asimov fans will want to browse, this, like Gold (1994), a posthumous collection of writings on science fiction, is publishing at its laziest: Surely someone could have been induced to write something illuminating about the contents here.