The mood of Tiptree's stories is almost uniformly dark, with themes centering on death and sex, and reading them is at the same time emotionally draining and exhilarating. A few of the stories (such as "We Who Stole the Dream" or "And I Have Come Upon this Place by Lost Ways") are a little contrived, but their failings are only obvious next to their companions, some of which are perfectly cut gems, almost too brilliant to be readable. Tiptree is inventive and has some original ideas, but it is the sheer power of her writing and its emotional engagement which is most impressive: I don't think I will ever be able to forget stories like "Your Faces, O My Sisters! Your Faces Filled of Light!", "The Screwfly Solution" and "Love is the Plan; the Plan is Death". Her Smoke Rose up Forever is not a volume to be tackled lightly, but it is definitely worth making an effort for.