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Welcome to Bordertown by Holly Black Review

Title: Welcome to Bordertown

Author: Holly Black

First published May 24, 2011

544 pages, Hardcover

ISBN: 9780375867057 (ISBN10: 0375867058)

Rating: 4.07


Welcome to Bordertown: a place where the lines between reality and fantasy are blurred. Runaways from both the human world and the elfin realm find themselves in this mysterious city, seeking adventure and a sense of belonging.

Here, elves rock out in bands and race on spell-powered motorbikes, while humans reinvent themselves in the gritty squats, clubs, and artist studios of Soho. Terri Windling’s original Bordertown series paved the way for today’s urban fantasy, introducing a new generation of authors such as Charles de Lint, Will Shetterly, Emma Bull, and Ellen Kushner.

In this new volume of all-new work, the original writers are joined by a new generation of dreamers, including Holly Black, Cassandra Clare, Cory Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, Catherynne M. Valente, and more.

Together, they take to the streets of Bordertown in over twenty interconnected stories, poems, and graphic tales that will transport you to a world where anything is possible.

About the Author

Holly Black is a highly successful author, with over thirty fantasy novels under her belt, specifically written for children and teenagers. She’s been recognized for her work as a finalist for the Eisner Award and the Lodestar Award, as well as having won the Mythopoeic Award, a Nebula, and a Newbery Honor.

Her books have been translated into 32 languages and even adapted for film. Holly currently resides in New England with her husband and son, in a home that boasts a secret library.

Editoral Review

Welcome to Bordertown by Holly Black is a collaborative novel published on May 24, 2011. It shares a universe with the Bordertown series, which was first published back in the early 1980s.

The novel welcomes a new generation of writers who have been inspired by the setting of Bordertown, a city on the border between faerie and mundane worlds. Holly Black and Ellen Kushner co-edited the book, which features contributions from fourteen different writers.

The novel introduces readers to a motley collection of characters from all walks of life, including faerie and human teenagers, writers, artists, and musicians. They are all drawn to Bordertown by the promise of magic, creativity, and freedom.

However, they soon discover that life in the city is far from easy. They must navigate dangerous power struggles between rival factions, deal with the consequences of their own choices, and confront their deepest fears and desires.

The novel is steeped in themes of self-discovery and identity, highlighting the struggles of its eclectic cast of characters as they try to find their place in a world that doesn’t quite fit. Their personal journeys are set against the backdrop of a city in turmoil, where magic and mundane collide in unexpected and often tragic ways.

Through their experiences, the novel raises important questions about the nature of power, responsibility, and community. The writing style of Welcome to Bordertown is rich and immersive, capturing the spirit of the city and its inhabitants in vivid detail.

The plot is intricately woven, with multiple storylines and perspectives that come together seamlessly to create a cohesive narrative. The characters are well-developed and distinct, each with their own unique voices and motivations that add depth and complexity to the story.

The novel does suffer from some pacing issues, particularly in the second half, where some plotlines seem to be rushed or resolved too quickly. Additionally, the sheer number of characters and plotlines can be overwhelming at times, making it difficult for readers to keep track of who’s who and what’s going on.

However, these flaws are minor and do not detract from the overall quality of the book. As a whole, Welcome to Bordertown is a thoroughly enjoyable read that will appeal to fans of urban fantasy, YA fiction, and magical realism.

It is a testament to the enduring popularity of the Bordertown series and its timeless themes of creativity, freedom, and rebellion. It also reflects the current cultural moment, with its emphasis on diversity, inclusion, and activism.

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story with a strong sense of place and a cast of characters that will stay with you long after you’ve finished reading. Overall, I give Welcome to Bordertown four out of five stars.

The writing is superb, the characters are well-drawn, and the themes are both timely and timeless. While there are some pacing issues and a few too many plotlines to keep track of, these flaws do not detract from the overall quality of the book.

If you’re looking for a magical, immersive read that will transport you to another world, Welcome to Bordertown is definitely worth checking out.