A mixed bag, or should I say a mixed garden plot? The title story is a tidy tale of the unflappable meeting the inexplicable, with nice dry humour. Nobody Has to Know is brief and chilling, told all in dialogue. Now And In the Hour of Our Death is touching (I have to wonder whether it carried the same impact in the original anthology). Why They Call It That is pretty much a shaggy dog story.
The writing throughout is smooth and professional, as one would expect, with touches of lyricism as in Please to See the King. The oddest story is The Little Prune Who Couldn't Talk, a sort of V for Vendatta via Aesop. The strongest (no surprise it grew up into a novel) is Bad Blood, a scary campfire story told in a convincing adolescent voice.
Entertaining brief reads for spare moments.
(reviewed 45 days after purchase)