The Night Marchers and Other Oceanian Stories
by Kel McDonald (Goodreads Author) (Editor), Sloane Leong (Goodreads Author) (Editor), Kate Ashwin (Editor), Jonah Cabudol-Chalker (Contributor), Rob Cham (Contributor), Yiling Changues (Contributor), Paolo Chikiamco (Goodreads Author) (Contributor), Diigii Daguna (Contributor), Brady Evans (Contributor), Mark Gould (Contributor), Gen H. (Contributor)
Middle Grade is not something I read a lot, I am pretty set on adult fiction. But this anthology looked interesting. There are some nice stories here and some that I liked less. The artwork spans various types, some of it is very simple, some very nice. The usual mixed bag. The individual stories are generally fairly short, they often also feel unfinished.
I am disappointed in the choice of settings. Mostly the stories originate from the Philippines, there are a few from Hawaii and one story from Fiji — I had hoped for more variety. Do the Philippines even count a belonging to Oceania? And why is New Zealand mentioned in the blurb? There is no story from New Zealand.
I liked The Legend of Apolaki and Mayari by Kim Miranda. What a pretty story with nice sketches! Brother and sister end up fighting each other, a Filipino folkloric story.
Also pretty good was Nanuae the Sharkboy by Gen H. Set in Hawaii. There is shapeshifting (yay!), sharks (yay!) and the story is told a lot through images instead of text, which was done well. The ending was a bit abrupt.
The Legend of the Coconut Tree by Yiling Changues was that singular story from Fiji. Beautiful artwork. I would call it illustrated poetry? Very pretty, although I am not sure if I understood the ending correctly.
Nice enough as a whole. I would probably recommend this to friends.
I received this free e-copy from the publisher/author via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review, thank you!