Allen's "Isadora" is a retelling of the Salem Witch Trials. Isadora's interest in astrology and her fascination with Marcus ignite prejudice and suspicion, nearly costing her life. Unfortunately, the novella format hinders full exploration of these themes.
Berry's "Twin Star" transplants a fairy tale into a space opera. A beautiful alien outcast is chosen as a potential lifemate for Ehereon. Berry employs only a handful of characters and a streamlined plot that turns on betrayal.
"Eidolon" is set in 19th-century Colorado. Biondine's amusing story centers on the results of a bet between Lucifer and his sister, an intriguing idea lost in a repetitive plot and underdeveloped characters. A well-plotted, traditional fantasy, "Thief of Dreams" is also a romance that explores the good vs. evil theme. While McGathy's transitions are sometimes abrupt and the characters' speech fluctuates between 21st-century English and Medievalese, this is a satisfying fantasy piece. (Jan., 305 pp., $18.99)