This novella, Pittsburgh Backyard and Garden, is free on Baen website.
After my recent read of Wood Sprites, a new novel by this author, I went back to the beginning of the Elfhome series and re-read the first novel, Tinker (my review here). Then I found that Ms. Spencer has a few pieces of short fiction set in the same universe. This is one of them, and it serves as a bridge between Tinker and Wood Sprites. Several secondary characters in this story appear in either of the novels, but the protagonist is an entirely new personage, Jane, a TV producer from a Pittsburgh television station. Yes, the city has been shuttling for years back and forth between Earth and Elfhome, and yes, the elves and humans of Pittsburgh have their irreconcilable differences, but a TV station must go on, right?
Jane produces a show of how the citizens of Pittsburgh deal with the hostile elven flora and fauna invading their gardens. The above-mentioned dealing usually involves a chainsaw or a flamethrower, or a variety of other weapons, applied after the necessary footage has been shot.
Now, a couple of nature documentary filmmakers came to Pittsburgh from Earth, and Jane’s boss strong-armed her, as a native Pittsburgher, to babysit them, so they wouldn’t get eaten by the elven wild life.
Of course there is humor in this story, but there are also some serious issues. I won’t go into specifics to avoid spoilers but I’d recommend it to anyone who likes the Elfhome series.
This novella is fast, delightful, and very well written.
Warning: it shouldn’t be read if you didn’t read Tinker first.