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In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self-evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fourth Annual Collection, the very best SF authors explo In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self-evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fourth Annual Collection, the very best SF authors explore ideas of a new world. This venerable collection brings together award-winning authors and masters of the field. With an extensive recommended reading guide and a summation of the year in science fiction, this annual compilation has become the definitive must-read anthology for all science fiction fans and readers interested in breaking into the genre.


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In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self-evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fourth Annual Collection, the very best SF authors explo In the new millennium, what secrets lay beyond the far reaches of the universe? What mysteries belie the truths we once held to be self-evident? The world of science fiction has long been a porthole into the realities of tomorrow, blurring the line between life and art. Now, in The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fourth Annual Collection, the very best SF authors explore ideas of a new world. This venerable collection brings together award-winning authors and masters of the field. With an extensive recommended reading guide and a summation of the year in science fiction, this annual compilation has become the definitive must-read anthology for all science fiction fans and readers interested in breaking into the genre.

30 review for The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fourth Annual Collection

  1. 4 out of 5

    pax

    As always, reviews for individual stories: Terminal (Lavie Tidhar) Poetic but does require more suspension of disbelief that I am able to give a story at the moment. Touring with the Alien (Carolyn Ives Gilman) And idea story and I don' t think I've seen any particular variant of this idea before. Neat. Patience Lake (Matthew Claxton) This one was really strong: bleak, deep, with a hinted rich world behind it. And very much a magnifying glass for today. When I read the summary, I did not think I would As always, reviews for individual stories: Terminal (Lavie Tidhar) Poetic but does require more suspension of disbelief that I am able to give a story at the moment. Touring with the Alien (Carolyn Ives Gilman) And idea story and I don' t think I've seen any particular variant of this idea before. Neat. Patience Lake (Matthew Claxton) This one was really strong: bleak, deep, with a hinted rich world behind it. And very much a magnifying glass for today. When I read the summary, I did not think I would like it - and here I am, not being able to stop thinking about this particular world. Jonas and the Fox (Rich Larson) This one piles on too much and the ending, once it happens, is too obvious. Prodigal (Gord Sellar) I keep comparing this one to Greg Egan's "Cutie", which is maybe an unfair comparison, but well, somehow "Cutie" avoided all the obvious pitfalls and this one does not. I think my biggest annoyance is the first person narrator and his naiveté towards what is happening. I am just not believing it. KIT: Some Assembly Required (Kathe Koja and Carter Scholz) I needed almost a month to get through this one. Boooring. Vortex (Gregory Benford) Not groundbreaking and the solution was a bit off too constructed but readable. Elves of Antarctica (Paul J. McAuley) Very different from what I expected and very enjoyable. Not quiet solarpunk, but pointing towards this direction. The Baby Eaters (Ian McHugh) Surprised on how well this one worked and how it made the aliens appear truly alien. I would read a full novel set in this particular world. A Salvaging of Ghosts (Aliette de Bodard) This was the first short story of de Bodards that I could connect to in any way. This one is still more fantasy than science fiction (and yes, I know, after the singularity it all seems fantasy, but even so ...), but it, especially its solution, did press the right buttons for me. "Those Shadows Laugh" (Geoff Ryman) "Redking" (Craig DeLancey) "Things with Beards" (Sam J. Miller) "Fieldwork" (Shariann Lewitt) "The Further Adventures of Mr. Costello" (David Gerrold) "Innumerable Glimmering Lights" (Rich Larson) "Fifty Shades of Grays" (Steven Barnes) "Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee" (Alastair Reynolds) "Cold Comfort" (Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty) "The Art of Space Travel" (Nina Allan) "Flight from the Ages" (Derek Künsken) "My Generations Shall Praise" (Samantha Henderson) "Mars Abides" (Stephen Baxter) "The Visitor from Taured" (Ian R. MacLeod) "When the Stone Eagle Flies" (Bill Johnson) "The Vanishing Kind" (Lavie Tidhar) "One Sister, Two Sisters, Three" (James Patrick Kelly) "Dispatches from the Cradle: The Hermit - Forty-Eight Hours in the Sea of Massachusetts" (Ken Liu) "Checkerboard Planet" (Eleanor Arnason) "They Have All One Breath" (Karl Bunker) "Mika Model" (Paolo Bacigalupi) "That Game We Played During the War" (Carrie Vaughn) "Because Change Was the Ocean and We Lived by Her Mercy" (Charlie Jane Anders) "The One Who Isn't" (Ted Kosmatka) "Those Brighter Stars" (Mercurio D. Rivera) "A Tower for the Coming World" (Maggie Clark) "Firstborn, Lastborn" (Melissa Scott) "Women's Christmas" (Ian McDonald) "The Iron Tactician" (Alastair Reynolds)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Florin Constantinescu

    So the Year's Best Science Fiction series has just turned 34. Happy birthday! Hopefully Mr. Gardner Dozois will continue to regale us with this series for many years to come. A trend appears to have formed in the past 5 or so years, with short fiction getting shorter and shorter. Gardner Dozois himself noticed in the introduction to this year's edition, that fewer and fewer novellas come out, and the novelettes are getting fewer and fewer words. Looking up at a statistic, from 25 titles per TYBSF So the Year's Best Science Fiction series has just turned 34. Happy birthday! Hopefully Mr. Gardner Dozois will continue to regale us with this series for many years to come. A trend appears to have formed in the past 5 or so years, with short fiction getting shorter and shorter. Gardner Dozois himself noticed in the introduction to this year's edition, that fewer and fewer novellas come out, and the novelettes are getting fewer and fewer words. Looking up at a statistic, from 25 titles per TYBSF edition in the 1980's and 90's, we have reached 31 in the 2000's and 40 in the 2010's. As a matter of fact, if last year's edition broke the record with 36 titles, this year's broke it again with 39! Out of which there are only 3 novellas (the lowest number since the 25th edition), and 21 short stories (tie for the record with last year). It is also true that the number of words published per edition has increased by about 50% in the 2000's compared to the 1990's. Okay, the stories are shorter. So? So after the disaster 2014 and the okay-ish 2015, 2016 appears to continue the pleasant trend to better quality short fiction. Featuring a whopping 8 'really liked it' or 'amazing' stories (the Gilman, the Claxton, one of the Larsons, the Ryman, the Lewitt, the Gerrold, the Künsken, and one of the Tidhars), this is probably the best edition since the 29th. The variety of sub-genres remains constant: you've got your alternate histories, your AIs, your cyborgs, your space adventures, your on-Earth-near-futures, your solar system, etc. Can't complain from this point of view. Breakdown of the stories: • Terminal • short story by Lavie Tidhar - 1* This is the 5th or 6th story by Tidhar that I read in Gardner Dozois' Year's Best anthologies and I simply cannot see this one through to the end either. I find myself simply unable to follow what is going on. Are we traveling to Mars or what's going on? • Touring with the Alien • novelette by Carolyn Ives Gilman - 5* Spaceships have landed on Earth and brought aliens who lack consciousness together with former human abductees to act as translators. One woman is tasked with 'touring' such an alien and its almost symbiotic translator through America. Cool idea, lovely main character, very nicely done. • Patience Lake • novelette by Matthew Claxton - 4* Former war veteran turned shunned cyborg helps a farmer defend against other cyborgs. Who is this author? No idea, but pleasure making your acquaintance. • Jonas and the Fox • novelette by Rich Larson - 4* During a violent revolution on a distant planet, family hides the downloaded memories of second cousin into brain-dead body of son. What's going on here? 3 cool stories out of the first four? That's not happened in several years... • Prodigal • novelette by Gord Sellar - 3* Family's faithful dog receives 'uplift' treatment, becomes sentient, and joins pack of other sentient dogs fighting for rights. So-and-so. Talking animals are not my cup of tea. • KIT: Some Assembly Required • short story by Kathe Koja and Carter Scholz - 1* Sorry, can't tell what this is... some kind of play involving AIs and 16th century actors... not sure. • Vortex • short story by Gregory Benford - 3* Scientists analyse a Mars-spanning life form that appears to have been alive for bilions of years. Cool idea, but difficult execution does not make for 'friendly reading'. • Elves of Antarctica • short story by Paul J. McAuley - 2* After rising sea levels due to glaciers melting, scientists attempt to 'freeze off' some large chunks of Antarctica and to create herds of mammoths, but run into legends of elves buried in the ice. Boring subject. • The Baby Eaters • short story by Ian McHugh - 1* This is one of those stories that piss you off with horrible character names and concepts. The first page full of 'Meychezhek', 'Krithkinee', 'Junkhin', 'Badharee' made me cringe in horror. Unable to follow this mess. Abandon ship! • A Salvaging of Ghosts • short story by Aliette de Bodard - 2* The usual clear and lyrical Bodard now comes up with an almost unreadable story about a woman trying to bring her daughter back from some kind of virtual hell aboard an alien starship. Barely managed to read through to the end. • Those Shadows Laugh • novelette by Geoff Ryman - 4* Ryman is another author who I've met through these anthologies and not managed to like a single one of his stories. Until this one. In this alternate world story, a geneticist arrives on an island populated by women who have been procreating by parthenogenesis and are wary of outsiders and manages to fall in love with one of them. It was very interesting how the gender of the main character was kept ambiguous until the very end. • Redking • short story by Craig DeLancey - 3* Cyberpunkish story about a cop asked to trace the creator of a virus infecting brain interfaces. Setting's been done to death, but the story is still pleasantly readable. • Things with Beards • short story by Sam J. Miller - 1* I wasn't able to read this one. Wasn't even able to tell what this is about or if even it loosely fits the science fiction genre. • Fieldwork • novelette by Shariann Lewitt - 4* Beautifully written story describes the journey of a woman scientist to Jupiter's moon Europa trying to understand what had killed her grandmother in a similar expedition years ago. • The Further Adventures of Mr. Costello • novella by David Gerrold - 4* Another beautifully written story. Gerrold successfully emulates Theodore Sturgeon's style to lay out a planet that is just being settled by humans, and a plan to capture some bizarre beasts for butchering. This also features an original concept about families with 4-5 members, whose sexes are interchangeable. Interesting relationships develop out of this. The actual plot drags a little, but the rest of the story is top-notch. • Innumerable Glimmering Lights • short story by Rich Larson - 3* This short story started with a perfect setting: underwater alien civilization, with one visionary engineer attempting to drill up through the ice to reach the mythical "air" above. Unfortunately, after the brilliant beginning, instead of focusing on the efforts and the effects of air on the civilization, it focuses on political plots and sabotage of the drilling machine and crew. Ugh. • Fifty Shades of Grays • novelette by Steven Barnes - 3* Aliens appear over Earth and offer technologies in return for... you can guess from the title... sex. It's actually a plan to subjugate mankind by destroying procreation. Maybe the sex bit had not been done before, and I loved the clear style, but the overall feel is not that original after all. • Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee • short story by Alastair Reynolds - 3* This story is presented in an interesting format: an interview with a former human who has now been transformed into an A.I. in order to investigate an anomaly into the sun. There are no extra cool revelations at the end though. • Cold Comfort • novelette by Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty - 3* In spite of escalating war on Earth, scientist manages to create CO2 trappers on Antarctica and fight-off global warming. Interesting, but marginal idea. The style is savvy and fast, but ultimately only the core idea matters, as the plot is going nowhere. • The Art of Space Travel • novelette by Nina Allan - 2* Yet another not-really SF story. A maid in a hotel hosting a few astronauts bound for Mars reminisces about her mother's time in the same hotel and tries to unravel mystery about her father. • Flight from the Ages • novelette by Derek Künsken - 4* Two AIs travel (sometimes through time) to fight off the death of the universe. Very interesting hard science fiction ideas, but the writing style is a little clunky. • My Generations Shall Praise • short story by Samantha Henderson - 1* I wouldn't be surprised if you found this short story in Ellen Datlow's Best Horror of the Year. With just a very small sci-fi-ish idea (convicted murderers get their minds erased), the rest of the story is horror-ish and not very good horror either. • Mars Abides • short story by Stephen Baxter - 3* In a slightly alternate world USA and USSR each send expeditions to Mars, then annihilate each other, and the 'martians' must find way to work together. The setup is not so interesting, the plot and characters kinda are. • The Visitor from Taured • novelette by Ian R. MacLeod - 3* This was surprisingly well-written, featuring a man bent on proving the many-worlds theory sometime in the near future of Earth, who also manages to prove his theory by 'escaping' this world. • When the Stone Eagle Flies • novelette by Bill Johnson - 1* Time travelers appear stuck in 600 B.C.E. Nineveh and plan to make sure history unfolds according to recorded annals. A 'been there, done that' kinda idea, and a poor execution. • The Vanishing Kind • novella by Lavie Tidhar - 5* Having read several other stories by Lavie Tidhar in previous editions of this anthology (and even another in this one), and not liked them one bit, I approached this one carefully. But then, as I read on, it turned out that this one is actually very cool. Set in an alternate world Britain after the Nazis won the war, it features a gritty old German veteran seeking a lost love interest in London, while playing cat and mouse with the Gestapo. Very well written, with a very original ending. • One Sister, Two Sisters, Three • novelette by James Patrick Kelly - 2* Romantic plot on a planet deeply steeped into religion, where two sisters fall in love with the same tourist. Boring! • Dispatches from the Cradle: The Hermit - Forty-Eight Hours in the Sea of Massachusetts • short story by Ken Liu - 1* I wasn't able to tell just what the hell this one is about. Some kind of semi-postapocalyptic Earth receiving tourists from other planets... The usual clear and nice Liu delivers something unreadable. • Checkerboard Planet • novelette by Eleanor Arnason - 2* A very convoluted story with a cool premise: a planet where vegetation grows after certain rules, but when the narrative jumps mid-paragraph between the real world and a virtual one, and the technology is insufficiently described before being heavily used, the story becomes unreadable. • They Have All One Breath • novelette by Karl Bunker - 3* Another story with a very interesting setup, in which the author has no idea how to continue past the midpoint. An artificial utopia is surprisingly brought about almost over night by tiny robots who decide they will rule the Earth from now on, and do away with all diseases, crimes, jobs, etc. Once the description of the world was over, we are left hanging mid-air without a proper ending. • Mika Model • short story by Paolo Bacigalupi - 2* From here on, only uninteresting stories. As if Dozois discovered that he had a lot of space available and decided to throw in some fillers. A companion-model cyborg commits murder and turns itself in, but the detective is unsure whether to treat this as murder or malfunction. Just about when this story is about to go somewhere, it ends abruptly. • That Game We Played During the War • short story by Carrie Vaughn - 2* An ambassador of sorts from one nation of non-telepaths travels across the front lines to resume a game of chess with a former acquaintance from a telepathic race during a ceasefire. Not much SF here either, although the narrative is good enough. • Because Change Was the Ocean and We Lived by Her Mercy • short story by Charlie Jane Anders - 1* You can almost tell from the pretentious title that this is going to be a pretentious story. Even if short it contains chapters with titles just as long as ridiculous, and the plot in unintelligible. I was only able to discern the setting: an island above a submerged San Francisco. • The One Who Isn't • short story by Ted Kosmatka - 2* A lonely woman scans young boy's mind, produces a clone of the mind, then unsuccessfully (?) attempts to program it. I hated the surrealistic, mysterious dialogues. • Those Brighter Stars • short story by Mercurio D. Rivera - 2* Aliens arrive on Earth, ignore everyone and take off again. That's not bad in itself, but the story is more concerned with the efforts of a woman to communicate with her family than with the aliens. • A Tower for the Coming World • short story by Maggie Clark - 1* Yet another story set in a futuristic setting, with a non sci-fi-ish (and un-followable) plot. • Firstborn, Lastborn • short story by Melissa Scott - 1* A poorly written story about AIs doing God knows what. • Women's Christmas • short story by Ian McDonald - 2* A bunch of women get together for Christmas in a spa. Some story this is... • The Iron Tactician • novella by Alastair Reynolds - 3* This starts off very solid, in the same lines as the previous 3 or 4 stories featuring main character Merlin do: galactic war, effects of light speed travel, etc, but then suddenly, about half-way through, it takes a turn for the worse and a large scene of boring dialogue concerning ethic ensues. Almost struggled to see this one through to the end.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Johan Haneveld

    Phew ... It's hard to review a voluminous collection like this, more than 650 pages of SF novellas and short stories. Most are by well known authors, and I'm recognizing multiple names from past volumes in this series. And really, if you want to stay informed about the state of the genre, this is the collection to read. It's big, it's juicy, and whatever your taste in sci fi, there's wont to be something you'll enjoy in here. I've read some comments complaining about the stories dealing with cli Phew ... It's hard to review a voluminous collection like this, more than 650 pages of SF novellas and short stories. Most are by well known authors, and I'm recognizing multiple names from past volumes in this series. And really, if you want to stay informed about the state of the genre, this is the collection to read. It's big, it's juicy, and whatever your taste in sci fi, there's wont to be something you'll enjoy in here. I've read some comments complaining about the stories dealing with climate change, but well ... as many SF-authors stay informed about science and current events, they will know about climate science, where the amount of evidence of human induced climate change is overwhelming and where the stakes for the coming decades are pretty high. Living below sea level in the Netherlands I am concerned myself. So it's only logical that there are stories dealing with this subject. For me the stories that I didn't like were the ones that tried to be high literature. Often in these stories the plot became muddled, or the story was about characters in futuristic settings, but did not contain new or inspiring ideas. And I like my SF to be about ideas. But your mileage may vary. For example, I didn't really like the opening story by Lavie Tidhar, even when I can recognize it as being well written from a literary standpoint. In my view it is just not very good science fiction. I was disappointed by the second story 'Touring with the alien' as well - the concept of an alien species lacking consciousness was interesting, but the story did not convince me that a species that did not want anything for itself would cross worlds. It tried to, but I was left questioning the concept. 'Patience Lake' did not contain new ideas as such, but worked as a tense tale about a cyborg entering a small town. It's almost a western, and I could imagine Clint Eastwood in the part of the cyborg. 'Jonas and the fox' did contain some great idea's. A hunted revolutionary has found a place to hide, but at what cost? The ending was heartfelt, but maybe a little bit too pat. But I enjoyed this story nevertheless. 'Prodigal' had an interesting theme, but it did not develop it far enough. I think the author wanted to make this a character based story, but it would have been better if there had been a transformational ending, where the main idea (Dogs manipulated to be intelligent) had been used to change the world. Now it fizzles out after a promising start. 'Some assembly required' is a bit of an experiment, using a more experimental style, but ultimately I liked it. 'Vortex' by Gregory Benford is old school hard SF, and I liked it a lot. A great idea about a form of life that would be possible to exist on Mars and our way of interacting with it. Paul J. McAuley's story had mammoths in it, so it gains points for that, and it's about our relationship with landscape, but there was too little plot here to engage me much. 'The baby eaters' was not as shocking to me as the title suggested. Aliette de Bodard usually writes very far future SF in a bit of an alternate timeline, with strange inventions and discoveries on every page. It's the same here and I enjoyed this tale very much! It's weird, full of ideas and personal at the same time. Geoff Rymans story was heartbreaking. A great idea (a new species of human, and the consequences of falling in love). 'Redking' was a fun, fast paced cyberpunk story but not more than that. 'Things with beards' a meditative sort of sequel to a well known movie. 'Fieldwork' focused on relationships too much for my taste, where it could have been about scientific discovery. I quite liked 'The further adventures of mr. costello' even if I didn't know the story of Theodore Sturgeon this is a sequel to. An interesting world with an inventive ecology, and a schemer trying to worm his way in the economy. 'Innumerable glimmering lights' is an interesting story from the point of view of an alien species living under the ice of a moon. Steven Barnes' 'Fifty shades of grays' was unsettling and grim under a varnish of humour. 'Sixteen questions for Kamala Chatterjee' showcases Reynolds' powerful ideas. It's almost too much to fit in a short story. 'Cold comfort' is one of those climate change stories, and is showing how much we need to take action, and soon. 'The art of space travel' is another one of those stories that is all about the characters, where the sciencefictional background serves to illuminate the character development and not the other way around. I did enjoy it and it is well written, it just is not the type of SF I like to read most. But then there's a story that's right up my alley, almost all ideas: 'Flight from the ages'. Again almost too much to fit in a short story ... But I liked the scale of this, as to save the universe from an old weapon a journey must be made to the beginning of time. 'My generations shall praise' was short, tough, with a great ending. Stephens Baxters alternate history tale I had read before and I liked his version of Mars a lot. 'The visitor from Taured' was well written, interesting, but I had hoped for a more interesting conclusion. The same is true for 'When the stone eagle flies'. A fun story about time travel, but I was hoping for more. The second story from Lavie Tidhar is an alternate universe tale, an interesting, noirish take on a well known version of our world, the one where the Nazi's won. 'One sister, thwo sisers, three' was interesting, but did not really hold my attention. 'Dispatches from the cradle' is another intersting climate fiction, but I like stories with stronger endings more. Here it was more a description of life on a changed world. 'Checkerboard planet' has a very interesting new ecosystem. I like these kind of stories a lot! Also a bit of an anti-corporation vibe that I liked. 'They have all one breath' asks the question if it would really be an utopia if computers gained control. Ultimately it's scary. Paolo Bacigalupi's story was short and disturbing. I appreciated it a lot. 'That game we played during the war' has an interesting take on telepathy. Charlie Jane Anders has an interesting post climate change world, intimately described. But it's again a story that's more about the characters than it is about the ideas. She can write though. 'The one who isn't' is another experimental story, and it ends in a gut punch ... This one will stay with me. Those brighter stars was a bit of a disappointment, the sci fi used as a way of commenting on the main characters life, and not really leading to a great resolution. One of the weak entries here. I didn't really like 'A tower for the coming world' either. 'Firstborn, lastborn' did not really work for me, the author didn't give me enough to engage with the plot or the characters. 'Women's christmas' was boring to me. No big idea here. The story by Alastair Reynolds was great. A great end to the collection, featuring a far future civilisation, a traveler entering another solar system where a war has been raging for centuries. There are great ideas here, great action too, and a couple of interesting revelations. I do think it could have been a bit shorter. Then it would be more powerful even. It's not his best story - it's not really revolutionary - but it's entertaining in an old fashioned way. All in all a great collection.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Peter Tillman

    The standouts, for me: • Elves of Antarctica, by Paul J. McAuley, 5 stars! • Flight from the Ages • novelette by Derek Künsken. 4.5 stars • Firstborn, Lastborn • short story by Melissa Scott. 4+ stars • Checkerboard Planet • novelette by Eleanor Arnason. 4 stars • The Visitor from Taured • novelette by Ian R. MacLeod. Soft 4 stars • Fifty Shades of Grays • novelette by Steven Barnes. Soft 4 stars. — and lots more 3.5 and 3 star stories. Good anthology, as always. Overall, 3.5 stars, rounded up. TOC: htt The standouts, for me: • Elves of Antarctica, by Paul J. McAuley, 5 stars! • Flight from the Ages • novelette by Derek Künsken. 4.5 stars • Firstborn, Lastborn • short story by Melissa Scott. 4+ stars • Checkerboard Planet • novelette by Eleanor Arnason. 4 stars • The Visitor from Taured • novelette by Ian R. MacLeod. Soft 4 stars • Fifty Shades of Grays • novelette by Steven Barnes. Soft 4 stars. — and lots more 3.5 and 3 star stories. Good anthology, as always. Overall, 3.5 stars, rounded up. TOC: http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?6... • Terminal • short story by Lavie Tidhar. An unusual migration to Mars story, but no real ending. 2.5 stars. Online: https://www.tor.com/2016/04/13/terminal/ • Touring with the Alien • novelette by Carolyn Ives Gilman. http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/gilma... 3 stars on first read, not reread. Hugo Award Nominee for Best Novelette. • Patience Lake • novelette by Matthew Claxton. Good but grim story of a cyborg ex-soldier struggling for his life, 3+ stars, but not one to reread! • Jonas and the Fox • novelette by Rich Larson. An unsettling story of a colony world, with a political revolution gone bad. 3.5+ stars. Recommended. http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/larso... • Prodigal • novelette by Gord Sellar. A couple order a sentient dog. It doesn’t turn out well. Well-written, but not for me. 1.5 stars. • KIT: Some Assembly Required • short story by Kathe Koja and Carter Scholz. An odd story about a boy building an AI modeled on Christopher Marlowe. Had moments, but 2 stars for me. • Vortex • short story by Gregory Benford. Life on Mars! Exploration of a Mars-wide, underground slime-mold colony that just might be sentient, against a drama of war back on Earth. First-rate story, 3.5 stars. • Elves of Antarctica • short story by Paul J. McAuley. A displaced helicopter pilot in a newly ice-free Antarctic Peninsula comes to terms with his life, and the future. Hard-SF, and the best story in this year’s anthology, so far. 5 stars! • The Baby Eaters • short story by Ian McHugh. Strange but intriguing vignette, about an encounter of a human trader with a very alien species. I’d like to learn more about the badhar-krithkinee. 3 stars. • A Salvaging of Ghosts • [Universe of Xuya] • short story by Aliette de Bodard. http://www.beneath-ceaseless-skies.co... • Those Shadows Laugh • novelette by Geoff Ryman. A woman geneticist visits an island-nation of women who reproduce parthenogenetically. She falls in love/lust. It doesn’t end well for her. 2.5 stars, for me. • Redking • short story by Craig DeLancey. Crude, hard-boiled detective story about toxic game code. 1.5 stars, don’t bother. http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fic... • Things with Beards • short story by Sam J. Miller. Horror-SF about mind-control aliens who make their hosts do terrible things. Nebula & Shirley Jackson nominee, Not for me, 2 stars. http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/mille... • Fieldwork • novelette by Shariann Lewitt. An eruption on Europa killed most of the adults on the research team. The children survived, and the daughter of one of the survivors is set to return on a followup expedition. Good story, 2.8 stars. • The Further Adventures of Mr. Costello • novella by David Gerrold. Homage to Sturgeon’s classic “Mr. Costello, Hero”, it’s a decent story about farming and ranching on a sparsely-populated planet. Newbie Mr. Costello has a Big Idea…. Never quite jelled, for me anyway. 2.7 stars. • Innumerable Glimmering Lights • short story by Rich Larson. A project to drill through the ice at the roof of the world stirs religious opposition. Theme music: The Doors, “Break on Through to the Other Side”. 2.7 stars. • Fifty Shades of Grays • novelette by Steven Barnes. Alien sex-tourists come, bearing gifts. It doesn’t turn out well. If you haven’t read it, you should. Soft 4 stars. http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fic... • Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee • short story by Alastair Reynolds. An odd story about a solar researcher, a very long-term project, with surprising results. I didn’t like the story device (Ph.D defense) and the story didn’t quite make sense. 2.5 stars. • Cold Comfort • novelette by Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty. The lighter side of catastrophic climate change. Billions of deaths! Sort of optimistic, but not really for me. 2.5 stars. • The Art of Space Travel • novelette by Nina Allan. A nice near-future relationship story, about a woman and her ailing Mom. 3 stars, https://www.tor.com/2016/07/27/the-ar... • Flight from the Ages •novelette by Derek Künsken. Impressive hard-rubber science story, updating the tale of Ulysses and blind Polyphemus to sentient AI reps of the Bank of the Plutocracy, and their race to save the universe! “The blistering sheets of x-rays. The thrumming of space-time shuddering with gravitational waves.” Marvelous fun, 4.5 stars. Same universe as his first novel, The Quantum Magician. • My Generations Shall Praise • short story by Samantha Henderson. A convicted murderess is approached by a distant relative, who offers her $$$ for her daughter — well, it’s a complicated, nasty brain-hop story. 3 stars. • Mars Abides • short story by Stephen Baxter. Life is discovered on Mars, in the 1964 Mariner photos, and American and Soviet expeditions arrive on Mars in 1976. Things go downhill from there. A nice idea that turns into a story I hated. 2 stars, since it’s well-written -- but I hate it. • The Visitor from Taured • novelette by Ian R. MacLeod. Complicated story about a man trying to prove the many-worlds hypothesis. I liked it a lot: soft 4 stars • When the Stone Eagle Flies • novelette by Bill Johnson. Martin & Artie series. Confusing time-travel story, that makes a little more sense if you read the story reprinted in Dozois #35. This one is the Fall of Nineveh. Martin and Artie have lost their timeline connection. 3+ stars, and I hope he collects the stories when he finished them. • The Vanishing Kind • novella by Lavie Tidhar. The Nazis conquered England in this alternate-history story, that I didn’t read, and likely won’t. Nazis win WW2! Imagine that. • One Sister, Two Sisters, Three • novelette by James Patrick Kelly. Two sisters sell homemade cookies at a mysterious alien ruin, now a tourist attraction — and it goes on from there. 3.5+ stars, I liked this one a lot. Read it at http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/kelly... • Dispatches from the Cradle: The Hermit - Forty-Eight Hours in the Sea of Massachusetts • short story by Ken Liu. Good but over-wrought story of future flooding from Global Warming. 2.5 stars • Checkerboard Planet • novelette by Eleanor Arnason. A Lydia Duluth story, a mini space-opera that I’m not even going to try to summarize, except that it’s near-great. 4 stars; Arnanson fans will be happy: http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/arnas... • They Have All One Breath • novelette by Karl Bunker. What if our new AI Overlords create a utopia, but not everyone fits in? 3.5 stars • Mika Model • short story by Paolo Bacigalupi. Can an AI sex-toy fembot be a murderess, and should she get a lawyer? 3.5 stars, http://www.slate.com/articles/technol... • That Game We Played During the War • short story by Carrie Vaughn. Hugo nominee. Postwar story: an ex-POW nurse goes back to play chess with her former captor, and it gets way too complicated for a line or two. 3.5 stars. Story link and real reviews: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2... • Because Change Was the Ocean and We Lived by Her Mercy • short story by Charlie Jane Anders. DNF, try again sometime? • The One Who Isn't • short story by Ted Kosmatka. Went by me, 1.5 stars. http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fic... • Those Brighter Stars • short story by Mercurio D. Rivera. What if the Aliens come to call, but have no interest in Humans? Weak 3 stars, http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fic... • A Tower for the Coming World • short story by Maggie Clark. Nice, traditional near-future moving off-Earth story, by a new-to-me writer: 3.5 stars. http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/clark... • Firstborn, Lastborn • short story by Melissa Scott. A remarkably dense far-future story. It’s AI vs. Human, or maybe posthuman, and revenge for an old hurt. 4+ stars, and I need to read it again. And I should catch up on what else Scott has been doing lately. • Women's Christmas • short story by Ian McDonald. Vignette, about five sisters with an aunt who went to the Moon, made her fortune in mining, and sends money home to her family. 2.5 stars. • The Iron Tactician • novella by Alastair Reynolds. Far-future tale of human civilization beset by hostile aliens, two near-immortals, a damaged starship, and a war that might be stopped. Pretty good space opera, weak 3 stars. Best review here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... --but lots of disagees from me.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra

    This was a good year for sci-fi, apparently. There were maybe four or five stories that felt weak to me, but most were above my expectations. I would sometimes finish a story and then wait till next day before starting another one just to savor the previous one a little longer. They are not only diverse and complex, lots of them are really well written. I read complaints in the reviews about dominating global warming theme. I would not say it was dominating, there are just five of those stories (a This was a good year for sci-fi, apparently. There were maybe four or five stories that felt weak to me, but most were above my expectations. I would sometimes finish a story and then wait till next day before starting another one just to savor the previous one a little longer. They are not only diverse and complex, lots of them are really well written. I read complaints in the reviews about dominating global warming theme. I would not say it was dominating, there are just five of those stories (and some of them are very good), which are wisely placed far from each other in the book. The overall representation of AI-related stories, interstellar sagas, alien contacts and yes, global warming, was pretty well balanced. But the global warming stories were too similar to each other especially in their backdrop - the idea of subtropical Alaska and underwater skyscrapers gets a bit boring when you read about it over and over again. I noticed a couple of trends. One is how many authors chose to play with non-binary genders. The interesting thing is that it wasn't the main focus of the stories, but just a world set up. So the future is gender neutral at this point. Another one is that very little of the stories were pure dystopias, even the scary "global warming" ones. Not all of them were optimistic, but not totally dark either. I like this trend, since I am not a big fan of doomsday scenarios. And hooray - hard sci-fi is dominating here. A bit of alternative history, but no fantasy or fairy tales. There are no bad genres, but it feels so good to dive into the realms where all the magic is performed by physics and genetics. Overall, very good book. To play favorites, here are my top three, in no particular order: "Sixteen questions" "Flight from the ages" "They all had just one breath"

  6. 4 out of 5

    Clay Brown

    I usually read this every year but this time the book took me over 5 months to finish, not so much because of content... still I'm not all that thrilled with these any more... I'm thinking I'll give these a rest. Dozois deserves a Hugo just for doing this for 30 years... but those days are long gone! I usually read this every year but this time the book took me over 5 months to finish, not so much because of content... still I'm not all that thrilled with these any more... I'm thinking I'll give these a rest. Dozois deserves a Hugo just for doing this for 30 years... but those days are long gone!

  7. 5 out of 5

    John Devlin

    Stories are fine with one caveat. Enough with the global warming trope; it's cliched, it's tired, and it's oh so contemporary. Stories are fine with one caveat. Enough with the global warming trope; it's cliched, it's tired, and it's oh so contemporary.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jill Carroll

    This series has been my go-to for short fiction from its inception (thirty-four years!), but this year's volume is somewhat disappointing, marred by numerous typos, strangely outdated author bios, and an uneven selection of stories. About half the choices are very good, but too many seem outdated and out of touch with the current cutting edge of SF. Terminal (Lavie Tidhar) - 4* - Melancholy but poetic. Touring With the Alien (Carolyn Ives Gilman) - 4* - road trip! Patience Lake (Matthew Claxton) - This series has been my go-to for short fiction from its inception (thirty-four years!), but this year's volume is somewhat disappointing, marred by numerous typos, strangely outdated author bios, and an uneven selection of stories. About half the choices are very good, but too many seem outdated and out of touch with the current cutting edge of SF. Terminal (Lavie Tidhar) - 4* - Melancholy but poetic. Touring With the Alien (Carolyn Ives Gilman) - 4* - road trip! Patience Lake (Matthew Claxton) - 4* - Cyborg veteran on hard times in Saskatchewan. Bleak but very good. Jonas and the Fox (Rich Larson) - 3* - Aftermath of a political revolution on a colony world. Prodigal (Gord Sellar) - 2* - Sentientized dogs. Very uneven. KIT (Kathe Koja & Carter Scholz) - 1* - AI Christopher Marlowe. Irritating. Vortex (Gregory Benford) - 3* - Mars story about sentient organic mat. Elves of Antarctica (Paul McAuley) - 5* - Beautifully written story about rune stones and the acceptance of change. Baby Eaters (Ian McHugh) - 2* - Interesting story of cultural differences, but unnecessarily complicated. A Salvaging of Ghosts (Aliette de Bodard) - 3* - Xuya story about grief. Those Shadows Laugh (Geoff Ryman) - 3* - Well written but creepy story (unsettling protagonist) about female utopia. RedKing (Craig Delancey) - 3* - Cybernoir about a code monkey helping cops with malicious software. Things With Beards (Sam Miller) - 2* - Nebula nominee? Huh. Fieldwork (Shariann Lewitt) - 5* - Excellent hard SF about 3 generations of women scientists and the discovery of life on Europa. Further Adventures of Mr. Costello (David Gerrold) - 3* - Good but drags a bit (too long). Innumerable Glimmering Lights (Rich Larson) - 4* - Underwater sapients drill up through ice. Fifty Shades of Grays (Steven Barnes) - 4* - Sly commentary on American sexual obsessions in a story of alien invasion. Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee (Alastair Reynolds) - 3* - Investigation of anomaly in the sun. Cold Comfort (Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty) - 5* - Fart Catchers in arctic permafrost. Excellent. Art of Space Travel (Nina Allan) - 2* - Hotel housekeeper and mars mission. SF? Flight from the Ages (Derek Kusken) - 1* - Banking AIs, ancient weapons, tachyons,...? My Generations Shall Praise (Samantha Henderson) - 2* - Mind transfer to convict. Mars Abides (Stephen Baxter) - 2* - Mars alternate history. Visitor from Taured (Ian MacLeod) - 5* - Lovely. Many worlds and literature. When the Stone Eagle Flies (Bill Johnson) - 2* - Time travellers in Niveneh trying to get home. Vanishing Kind (Lavie Tidhar) - 1* - Nazi London. One Sister, Two Sisters, Three (James Patrick Kelly) - 3* - Twin rivalry. Dispatches from the Cradle: The Hermit (Ken Liu) - 3 1/2 * - Elite hermit at sea on a drowned Earth. Checkerboard Planet (Eleanor Arnason) - 2* - Planet as literal biological checkerboard. Don't see the point of this one. They Have All One Breath (Karl Bunker) - 3* - AIs take over and create utopia. Mika Model (Paulo Bacigalupi) - 3* - Android kills abusive owner. This guy can write, but man is he dark. That Game We Played During the War (Carrie Vaughn) - 4* - Meeting after war between telepaths and non. Because Change Was the Ocean (Charlie Jane Anders) - 2* - Irritating kids in drowned SanFran. The One Who Isn't (Ted Kosmatka) - 1* - Woman seeks revenge on ex. Confusing. Those Brighter Stars (Mercurio Rivera) - 2* - So why would indifferent aliens come all that way? Protagonist like Temple Grandin. Tower for the Coming World (Maggie Clark) - 5* - Balancing the push to space with the need to heal the Earth. Lovely. Firstborn, Lastborn (Melissa Scott) - 3* - Revenge story with AIs and those who first created them. Women's Christmas (Ian McDonald) - 2* - Short companion piece to his Luna books, about women left behind in Ireland. Iron Tactician (Alastair Reynolds) - 3* - Good but choppy/skeletal. Deserved another 50 pages.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Spike Gomes

    After a fairly disappointing 33rd annual edition, Dozois' collection of 2016's best science fiction is a return to form, in which the majority of stories are not heavy-handed moral parables for our times. Granted, not all of them are to my taste, and one of them was damn near incomprehensible to me, but all in all, I enjoyed the majority of stories within. I do note that Dozois has deemed it unnecessary to make any mention of the continuing Hugo Award controversies at all, which is commentary eno After a fairly disappointing 33rd annual edition, Dozois' collection of 2016's best science fiction is a return to form, in which the majority of stories are not heavy-handed moral parables for our times. Granted, not all of them are to my taste, and one of them was damn near incomprehensible to me, but all in all, I enjoyed the majority of stories within. I do note that Dozois has deemed it unnecessary to make any mention of the continuing Hugo Award controversies at all, which is commentary enough in and of itself. Also I noted this year's edition was dedicated to the editor's physical therapists. Stay healthy, and here's to many more years, Gardner! I don't really have much to add other than to note which stories made a deep impact on me. “Fifty Shades of Grays” was both comical and grim at once, and had a very unintended message that I don't believe the author even realized about the modern nature of sex, and unintended messages are the only ones I ever enjoy. “Mars Abides” evoked the Cold War era through alternate history and provided a moving elegy to mankind that is all too plausible. “The Vanishing Kind” A great noir mystery set in a victorious Nazi world. A nicely dark piece of world building “They All Have One Breath” A philosophical musing on how even a benevolent singularity could ultimately make life intolerable for humans. “The Iron Tactician” Some real old school stuff, a rip roaring space opera with plot twists galore, and something of an antihero for a lead. I really want to track down the other novellas featuring the character Merlin. Five out of Five Stars.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alison C

    Every year, editor Gardner Dozois publishes a collection of the best short science fiction published in the previous year; in 2017 we are now up to the 34th such volume. This is a very large book indeed, running to some 650+ pages and containing Dozois’s choices for the very best of the field. In addition, he provides a summation of changes in the publishing world as it pertains to science fiction, information about the best-reviewed sf books, films and television shows, how anthologies and maga Every year, editor Gardner Dozois publishes a collection of the best short science fiction published in the previous year; in 2017 we are now up to the 34th such volume. This is a very large book indeed, running to some 650+ pages and containing Dozois’s choices for the very best of the field. In addition, he provides a summation of changes in the publishing world as it pertains to science fiction, information about the best-reviewed sf books, films and television shows, how anthologies and magazines are doing, and a list of those connected to the sf field who had died in the previous year; he also includes a long list of honorable mentions at the end of the book, stories that did not quite make the cut for inclusion but that he feels should be searched out nonetheless. As with any such volume, my personal favourites (this year, by Carolyn Ives Gilman, Aliete de Bodard, Sam J. Miller, David Gerrold, Alaister Reynolds, Nina Allan, Ken Liu, Carrie Vaughn, Charlie Jane Anders and Ian McDonald) may not be the favourites of other readers, but the quality of the stories is excellent throughout. I don’t read as much science fiction as I used to, but this annual volume is indispensable in terms of keeping up with the best science fiction published in English; highly recommended!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Paul Huffman

    This is an exceptional sampling of many different sub-genres and authors of science fiction curated by probably the greatest science fiction editor alive at that time, Gardner Dozois. (He passed away suddenly in 2018.) There are so many online and print vehicles for science fiction short stories and short fiction (novellas and novelettes) that pulling the best from all of those sources is an incredible task. There are stories from old, established writers like Alistair Reynolds and Gregory Benfo This is an exceptional sampling of many different sub-genres and authors of science fiction curated by probably the greatest science fiction editor alive at that time, Gardner Dozois. (He passed away suddenly in 2018.) There are so many online and print vehicles for science fiction short stories and short fiction (novellas and novelettes) that pulling the best from all of those sources is an incredible task. There are stories from old, established writers like Alistair Reynolds and Gregory Benford, recent rising talents like Ken Liu, and others I had never heard of. It was a great book to pick up from time to time when I was between longer reads or looking for a taste of something different. One added benefit is the lengthy year in review(Summation) at the beginning of the book. This gives an excellent overview of the science fiction literary industry as a whole, changes in periodicals, significant publications and people news. As a result this is not just a great source of reading but a great reference to find other things to read and new authors to explore.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Alex Telfar

    Noteworthy stories. - Touring with the alien - Redking - Fifty shades of grays - Sixteen questions for Kamala Chatterjee - Cold comfort - Dispatches from the cradle: The hermiet - 48 hours in the sea of Massachusetts - Those brighter stars Otherwise meh. Too much fiction, not enough science... And too few genuinely new ideas (at least to me). Some short stories I would like to read would be about/on; - an exploration of a world where we have cheap fusion energy, - the addictive nature of the internet and Noteworthy stories. - Touring with the alien - Redking - Fifty shades of grays - Sixteen questions for Kamala Chatterjee - Cold comfort - Dispatches from the cradle: The hermiet - 48 hours in the sea of Massachusetts - Those brighter stars Otherwise meh. Too much fiction, not enough science... And too few genuinely new ideas (at least to me). Some short stories I would like to read would be about/on; - an exploration of a world where we have cheap fusion energy, - the addictive nature of the internet and immersive games, - other stuff I have yet to think of...

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ben Lund

    It's hard to rate an anthology since there are some standout stories, and some stinkers that you just can't get into, but overall I enjoyed most of the stories. I gravitated towards some authors I am familiar with and the longest story in the book "The Iron Tactician", I saved till the end to end on a high note. I think in the future I'll look up the book to see who the authors are before deciding if I want to go ahead and read it. They are thick books so there is some commitment involved if you It's hard to rate an anthology since there are some standout stories, and some stinkers that you just can't get into, but overall I enjoyed most of the stories. I gravitated towards some authors I am familiar with and the longest story in the book "The Iron Tactician", I saved till the end to end on a high note. I think in the future I'll look up the book to see who the authors are before deciding if I want to go ahead and read it. They are thick books so there is some commitment involved if you want to read it all the way through.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Wesley Fox

    One of the better anthologies I have read. Favorite Stories in no particular order: Jonas and the fox by Rich Larson Elves of Antarctica by Paul McAuley The Further Adventures of Mr. Costello by David Gerrold Fifty Shades of Grays by Steven Barnes My Generations Shall Praise by Samantha Henderson They Have All One Breath by Karl Bunker Those Brighter Stars by Mercurio D. Rivera Things With Beards by Sam J. Miller

  15. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    A perfectly fun collection of stories, with a great mix of all the sci fi from hard (too few) to social commentary to humour to the burgeoning cli-fi genre. It's nice to see authors expand their narrators, though the prevalence of white men writing from the perspective of women of colour is a bit odd. But there's a lot of good here and it reads much easier than any collection this size has any right to. A perfectly fun collection of stories, with a great mix of all the sci fi from hard (too few) to social commentary to humour to the burgeoning cli-fi genre. It's nice to see authors expand their narrators, though the prevalence of white men writing from the perspective of women of colour is a bit odd. But there's a lot of good here and it reads much easier than any collection this size has any right to.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Charles F Crowe

    Read these collections when they become available I am a SciFi geek of course and grab one when ever they come out. Not all of the stories are world class, but all are crafted by true SciFy professionals. Two of my favorites are included here: One from Greg Benford and one from Alister Reynolds. These two alone are worth the time and investment to appreciate this collection...

  17. 4 out of 5

    K Holl

    This is a dense book, full of good stories. I suspect all his anthologies are as thorough. What I like about this editor's collections is he gives you a brief bio on the author and a mini abstract of the story's topics at the beginning of each selection. I am not going to lie, I did not read every single story. Some just didn't interest me as much as others. But those I read I enjoyed and it gave me some new SciFi authors to look for on the bookshelves and read their longer fiction. This is a dense book, full of good stories. I suspect all his anthologies are as thorough. What I like about this editor's collections is he gives you a brief bio on the author and a mini abstract of the story's topics at the beginning of each selection. I am not going to lie, I did not read every single story. Some just didn't interest me as much as others. But those I read I enjoyed and it gave me some new SciFi authors to look for on the bookshelves and read their longer fiction.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Thomas

    Particular favorites were "These Shadows Laugh" by Geoff Ryman, "Redking" by Craig DeLancey, "Fifty Shades of Grays" by Steven Barnes, "Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee" by Alastair Reynolds, "Cold Comfort" by Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty, "Because Change Was the Ocean and We Lived by Her Mercy" by Charlie Jane Anders, and "The Iron Tactician" by Alastair Reynolds. Particular favorites were "These Shadows Laugh" by Geoff Ryman, "Redking" by Craig DeLancey, "Fifty Shades of Grays" by Steven Barnes, "Sixteen Questions for Kamala Chatterjee" by Alastair Reynolds, "Cold Comfort" by Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty, "Because Change Was the Ocean and We Lived by Her Mercy" by Charlie Jane Anders, and "The Iron Tactician" by Alastair Reynolds.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Craig

    A mixture of stories ranging from 3* to 5* with the majority being in the lower end of that range. I wonder how much Gardner Dozois 'preferences' for certain kinds of stories has changed over the years when assembling this anthology. Versus how much has the 'quality' of great writing varied in the current year. A mixture of stories ranging from 3* to 5* with the majority being in the lower end of that range. I wonder how much Gardner Dozois 'preferences' for certain kinds of stories has changed over the years when assembling this anthology. Versus how much has the 'quality' of great writing varied in the current year.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Robert Murray

    Front to back filled with a fantastic array of Science Fiction stories. Space Opera, Hard Sci Fi, weird stuff, contemplative fiction where the SF elements are very subtle, and all the feelings. Took me ages to read this complete volume, and I'll likely return to it in the future, picking a story or two at random to read. Front to back filled with a fantastic array of Science Fiction stories. Space Opera, Hard Sci Fi, weird stuff, contemplative fiction where the SF elements are very subtle, and all the feelings. Took me ages to read this complete volume, and I'll likely return to it in the future, picking a story or two at random to read.

  21. 4 out of 5

    KevinS

    Nobody kept their finger on the pulse of science fiction like Mr Dozois; he was the best at picking a big pile of winners from a big pile of mostly dreck. I've read and own all 34 of these. If you want an overview of where science fiction was last year, read this book. Nobody kept their finger on the pulse of science fiction like Mr Dozois; he was the best at picking a big pile of winners from a big pile of mostly dreck. I've read and own all 34 of these. If you want an overview of where science fiction was last year, read this book.

  22. 5 out of 5

    David

    An excellent collection this year, not a dud in the mix and a couple real standouts.

  23. 5 out of 5

    RONALD EVANS

    Excellent anthology, as always! A few real gems, a few duds, but mainly, a set of very solid Science Fiction that doesn't delve too far into Fantasy. Excellent anthology, as always! A few real gems, a few duds, but mainly, a set of very solid Science Fiction that doesn't delve too far into Fantasy.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Richard Valentine

    Worth the money. It was a good read. All of them. That's why I buy this series. Nothing much more than that to say. Worth the money. It was a good read. All of them. That's why I buy this series. Nothing much more than that to say.

  25. 5 out of 5

    David Miller

    One of the best annual sci-fi anthologies. This volume does not disappoint.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Philip Hollenback

    Another solid installment.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Excellent collection! I'd previously read maybe a quarter of the stories, but a few of those were good enough to read again. Excellent collection! I'd previously read maybe a quarter of the stories, but a few of those were good enough to read again.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nate

    I actually finished this ages ago but I stopped updating goodreads when my tablet broke.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mark Wilk Moloney

    Nearly no dud entries, and plenty of brilliant ones.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Steve

    I have read very little new science fiction for some time but I have tried to keep up with "best of the year" anthologies. I have followed this series from the beginning but I skipped some volumes recently. I'm glad to see that Gardner Dozois has kept up the excellent quality of his selections. While I will probably never agree with every choice in any BOTY anthology, there were only a few of the thirty-nine stories here that I wouldn't consider to be very good and only one that I actually dislik I have read very little new science fiction for some time but I have tried to keep up with "best of the year" anthologies. I have followed this series from the beginning but I skipped some volumes recently. I'm glad to see that Gardner Dozois has kept up the excellent quality of his selections. While I will probably never agree with every choice in any BOTY anthology, there were only a few of the thirty-nine stories here that I wouldn't consider to be very good and only one that I actually disliked. My favorites are: "Touring with the Alien" - Carolyn Ives Gilman "Patience Lake" - Matthew Claxton "The Baby Eaters" - Ian McHugh "Those Shadows Laugh" - Geoff Ryman "Fieldwork" - Shariann Llewitt "Innumerable Glimmering Lights" - Rich Larson "Fifty Shades of Grays" - Steven Barnes "Cold Comfort" - Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty "The Visitor from Taured" - Ian R. MacLeod "The Vanishing Kind" - Lavie Tidhar "One Sister, Two Sisters, Three" - James Patrick Kelly "They Have All One Breath" - Karl Bunker "Mika Model" - Paolo Bacigalupi "Those Brighter Stars" - Mercurio D. Rivera I suppose that naming that many favorites may seem silly, but Dozois does a fine job selecting his choices. There is also Dozois's usual extremely informative and complete "Summation" of the field of science fiction during the year. I wish he would include the other nominees in his list of award-winners but it's hard to complain that a twenty-five page summary is too short.

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