After I read the excellent A Letter Never Sent I have come across a handful of underwhelming stories. Starting with a Cat Rambo story, which was decent (I rather enjoyed the manticore dropping the refrain "gnaw your bones" to frighten people), I’ve read six stories. Brazos, by Jerome Steuart, was surprisingly good. It deals with a man talking to the father of a River God down in Texas. The River God wants to marry the man’s daughter, but the father has read all the myths and knows that it generally does not end well. Strange Horizons has fairly consistently published quality stories and Brazos, while not one of the best, is solid. Sadly, the Heliotrope stories all disappointed. Honey Mouth had some potential, but On the Air and American Gothic...very disappointing. I really want Heliotrope to be a solid market for stories which publishes fiction which astounds and makes me sit up and notice. But, taking the first two issues into account...so far it isn't. Transtexting Pose from Clarkesworld...anyone know what that was about? Made no sense at all! The Cat Rambo was okay, but overall, I’m underwhelmed with this grouping.
I'll Gnaw Your Bones, the Manticore Said - Cat Rambo (Clarkesworld: July 2007)
Honey Mouth - Samantha Henderson (Heliotrope #1)
On the Air - Edward Morris (Heliotrope #1)
American Gothic - Michael Colangelo (Heliotrope #1)
Brazos - Jerome Steuart (Strange Horizons: July 2, 2007)
Transtexting Pose - Daniel Speegle (Clarkesworld: July 2007)
Bottom line: the only story I had any sort of appreciation for was I'll Gnaw Your Bones.