I have never been a fan of short stories but I had to read this collection by Garth Nix because it includes the final epilogue, if you will, of the Old Kingdom series.
The first story in the book is the novella ‘Nicholas Sayre and the Creature in the Case’ which takes place about 6 months after the events of Abhorsen. I really enjoyed this story – it was brilliantly written and conceptualised and was a great conclusion to the Old Kingdom series. The best thing about it was that it finally answered the one question I had once I finished Abhorsen. I won’t spoil it for you but it was great.
This is a worthy collection because before each story is told, Garth Nix gives the story behind why he wrote that particular story. He is such an inspired, talented author and I really look forward to reading more of his work.
Across the Wall contains a good mix of fantasy and fictional short stories, including two Arthurian interpretations (even though Nix admits to not being a fan of Arthurian legend). Apart from the Nicholas Sayre novella, my favourite stories were ‘Charlie Rabbit’ and ‘Lightning Bringer’. Like Garth Nix, I too have a fascination for lightning and once watched as Stephen was very, very nearly struck by lightning.
I give the collection four out of five stars because despite being a Garth Nix collection, I still don’t like short stories much and I didn’t like all the tales.