Beyond the Gate: Stories from the World of The Dream Engine by Monica Leonelle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Never having read The Dream Engine, and having basically no experience with steampunk fiction, I had no idea what to expect when I cracked open Beyond the Gate. But Monica Leonelle has a story in this collection, and I was curious, so I gave it a try.
Honestly, I wasn’t impressed at first. Almost gave up on the book until my toddler son randomly picked it out on my Kindle. I’m glad I kept going. The very next story was riveting, and so I continued.
I wasn’t a fan of every story, which ranged in genre from fantasy to mystery to thriller/horror, but there were some excellent ones among the bunch. Here are a list of my favorites:
- The Crown Reading by Monica Leonelle (Honestly, why did you not continue this story??? WHHHHYYYYY????? I need more. 😛 )
- Dreaming Mountain by Jamie Maltman
- Everyday Battles by A.T. Schubert
- Upon a Misty Morning by E.W. Pierce (see also Clockwork Scoundrels and Clockwork Scoundrels 2.)
- Round-About by Lisa Harvey (incredibly complex, and loved the way it came together in the end.)
- The Tinker’s Tale by Joseph Mello
- Scarlettina: A Crumble Fairy Tale by Abe Cedarian
- My Strength Will Ease Your Sorrow by Paul Jenny
- The Cloud by Michael Hustleborn
I didn’t venture further than the content warning, which set apart stories appropriate for young adult audiences from those more adult in theme (**the stories prior to the content warning were clean, although there may have been some mild swearing).
Beyond the Gate is a fun read and a great way to dip your toes into Steampunk if you haven’t already ventured into that genre. Plus, you get to discover talented authors along the way. So, win-win.