I get the impression that Wildthyme in Purple wasn’t as well received as some of the other, although as there isn’t a lot of evidence either way, that feeling isn’t exactly scientific. Certainly, is has a very solid 4.75 stars on LibraryThing, but it also has a less solid 4 on GoodReads, and hasn’t yet received any rating on the TARDIS library. Dan Tessier described it as “a dozen or so short stories, perfect for dipping into”, but also “not the strongest of Obverse’s Iris books”.
Part of the problem would seem to be with my story: both reviews of the collection conclude that The Bronze Door doesn’t do enough with its genre or its setting to be truly great. Dan Tessier says it’s “isn’t up to quite [my] usual standard”, which is the worst kind of review to have to cope with: someone who normally likes your work saying they are disappointed leaves your ego nowhere to hide. James Burton was more forgiving, deciding that the short story format didn’t really allow for a full exploration of all the ideas. He also said that it “nicely echoes the themes of several other stories in the collection. There are also some nice ideas involving other authors”.
I think that probably my focus for what the story was about was different to Dan and James’: both wanted to see the world and the pulp detective genre interrogated, whilst I was more interested in setting Chandler up against Iris. But at the end of the day, that was probably more my mistake than theirs: the book was sold, after all, as a collection of Pulp stories about Iris. I should perhaps have been more mindful of my theme, and less in love with my characters.