3.5 stars - I'd give this a B- if I was using grades. The quality of the stories here varied a lot. Aguirre's story was a great read and I also enjoyed Duvall's for the most part but the opening story was a definite weak link.Dawn of Eden by Julie KagawaThis story is the prequel to a new series by Kagawa, and it just felt slapped together. We open with civilization being destroyed by a deadly virus and our heroine trying to save a few survivors. Hero brings in a friend with an even deadlier version of the virus and when this ends with the friend and others like him killing off all of the non-infected people, let's just say that our heroine forgives hero way too quickly and then runs off with him. The action in this story jumps around a lot and I just wasn't buying the insta-love between the leads. An alliance born of desperation with maybe some lust thrown in? Perhaps, but riding off into the diseased sunset together, not so much. I'd grade this a C, maybe even C-.Thistle & Thorne by Ann AguirreNow this was a good short story. As it opens,we learn that the world has turned into a place where those who can afford it have retreated into luxurious private complexes while everyone else is left eking out a precarious existence in violence-ridden slums. Snake Ward, the home of Mari Thistle, appears to be ruled primarily by a crazed warlord. Mari earns her living and supports her younger siblings by stealing and the warlord sends her into one of the complexes. The heist goes wrong and Mary is saved by Thorne Goodman. As it turns out, Thorne is on a mission to overthrow the warlord, and Mari ends up in on the plan with him. Even though there is little overt romance in this story, the potential is there and that potential adds just the right amount of tension to an already action-packed story. This one was a very good read, and gets a solid B+.Sun Storm by Karen DuvallIn this story, sun storms have caused disease and environmental desolation. Exposure to the sparks thrown about by the sun storms has led to sickness has caused many to die, but in the case of a few, exposure to sun storms brings out abilities in them as they become Kinetics. I this story, the heroine is a Kinetic who can predict sun storms and so she chases them and warns people in their path. The action kicks up when she meets another mysterious Kinetic named Ian Matthews, who obviously has some ability to control weather. There were a few points in the story that just didn't seem to make a lot of sense (like the bit with the heroine's "sun addiction" and breaking same), but overall I basically liked this one. I'd give it a B-.