A deftly-handled story of a powerful young woman who has enemies, and has to spot the assassin in her midst. There’s complexity in the story, but not much in there to make it fantasy or indeed sf/alternate history as hinted in the opening paragraphs. Take out those opening paras and help from a surprise quarter in the closing paras and you have a touch of Fifty Shades of Earl Grey Tea.
- Ron Goulart. The Problem of the Elusive Cracksman. (Fantasy & Science Fiction, Nov/Dec 2012)
- C.S.E. Cooney. The Last Sophia. (The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2012)