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New Treasures: In Space No One Can Hear You Scream, edited by Hank Davis

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013 | Posted by John ONeill

In Space No One Can Hear You Scream-smallIn 2013, no one remembers that “In Space No One Can Hear You Scream” was the tag line of a 1979 horror movie.

Well, after 34 years, I guess it’s okay to recycle a decent tag line, even for a film as popular as Alien. Especially when the end product is as intriguing as this Halloween-themed science fiction anthology. The moment I saw it I thought, “I wonder if it has the really great horror SF, like Arthur C. Clarke’s “A Walk in the Dark,” and George R.R. Martin’s “Sandkings?” It has both, in fact, alongside 11 short stories and novelettes from Theodore Sturgeon, Elizabeth Bear and Sarah Monette, and others — plus a long novella from James H. Schmitz.


“The oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown,” the grand master of horror, H.P. Lovecraft, once wrote. And the greatest unknown is the vast universe, shrouded in eternal cosmic night. What things might be on other planets — or in the dark gulfs between the stars?

Giving very unsettling answers to that question are such writers as Arthur C. Clarke, Robert Sheckley, James. H. Schmitz, Clark Ashton Smith, Neal Asher, Sarah A. Hoyt, Tony Daniel and more, all equally masters of science fiction and of terror.

One might hope that in the void beyond the earth will be found friendly aliens, benevolent and possibly wiser than humanity, but don’t be surprised if other worlds have unpleasant surprises in store for future visitors. And in vacuum, no one will be able to hear your screams — as if it would do any good if they could…

Here’s the complete table of contents.


Introduction: It’s Dark Between the Stars, by Hank Davis
“A Walk in the Dark,” Arthur C. Clarke (Thrilling Wonder Stories, August 1950)
“Frog Water,” Tony Daniel (2013)
“Lost Memory,” Peter Phillips (Galaxy, May 1952)
“Dragons,” Sarah A. Hoyt (2013)
“The Last Weapon,” Robert Sheckley (Star Science Fiction Stories, 1953)
“Mongoose,” Elizabeth Bear and Sarah Monette (Lovecraft Unbound, 2009)
“Medusa,” Theodore Sturgeon (Astounding Science Fiction, February 1942)
“The Searcher,” James H. Schmitz (Analog, February 1966)
“The Rhine’s World Incident,” Neal Asher (Subterfuge, 2008)
“Nothing Happens on the Moon,” Paul Ernst (Astounding Science Fiction, February 1939)
“Visiting Shadow,” Hank Davis (2013)
“The God of the Asteroid,” Clark Ashton Smith (Wonder Stories, October 1932, as “Master of the Asteroid”)
“Sandkings,” George R. R. Martin (Omni, August 1979)

Ten of the stories are reprints, and three — by Tony Daniel, Sarah A. Hoyt, and editor Hank Davis — appear here for the first time. I’m familiar with less than half of the reprints, but based on how much I admire the ones I do recognize, this looks like a terrific collection.

eternal-frontierWe’ve covered several pulp and classic SF/fantasy reprints from Baen over the past few years, including:

Cthulhu: The Mythos and Kindred Horrors by Robert E. Howard (1987)
Unknown, edited by Stanley Schmidt (1988)
The Incompleat Nifft by Michael Shea (2000)
Agent of Vega by James H. Schmitz (2001)
Eternal Frontier by James H. Schmitz (2002)
Planets of Adventure by Murray Leinster (2003)
The Creatures of Man by Howard L. Myers(2003)
A Cosmic Christmas, edited by Hank Davis (2012)
In Space No One Can Hear You Scream, edited by Hank Davis (2013)
The Baen Big Book of Monsters, edited by Hank Davis (2014)

In Space No One Can Hear You Scream was edited by Hank Davis, Senior Editor at Baen Books. It was published October 1 by Baen (more info here). It is 325 pages, priced at $15 in trade paperback, and $8.99 for the digital edition. The cover is by Bob Eggleton.


  1. I’ll buy it.
    But the absence of Michael Shea is noted with displeasure.

    Comment by John Hocking - November 20, 2013 7:50 pm

  2. (Nodding)

    Yeah, but… has Michael Shea written any horror IN SPACE?

    We published a great Lovecraftian horror tale by Michael right here at Black Gate, but I think it was set in New Jersey…

    Comment by John ONeill - November 20, 2013 8:06 pm

  3. “Polyphemus” is, while not actually IN space, is set on another planet.

    Comment by Fletcher Vredenburgh - November 20, 2013 8:22 pm

  4. So it is… how did I forget that? And it even features a great alien beastie!

    Comment by John ONeill - November 20, 2013 10:49 pm

  5. Does Sandkings (which is a story that has remained stuck with me ever since I first read it many, many years ago) take place in space, or just feature outer space critters? If the latter, then I think a case also could’ve been made for including Shea’s The Autopsy.

    Comment by Joe H. - November 21, 2013 1:41 pm

  6. Good question! But “Sandkings” is set on the planet Baldur (no relation to Baldur’s Gate). And the sandkings themselves come from an even more alien planet.

    Comment by John ONeill - November 21, 2013 11:07 pm

  7. […] others (They’ve continued in this tradition with fabulous anthologies, including the recent In Space No One Can Hear You Scream, and many […]

    Pingback by Black Gate » Blog Archive » The Novels of Michael Shea: The Incompleat Nifft - March 22, 2014 12:32 pm

  8. […] Davis’ previous anthologies include The Best of the Bolos: Their Finest Hour (2010), In Space No One Can Hear You Scream (2013), and The Baen Big Book of Monsters […]

    Pingback by Black Gate » Blog Archive » Celebrate the Holidays with A Cosmic Christmas, edited by Hank Davis - December 21, 2014 7:56 pm

  9. […] approve of this Hank Davis fellow. His last anthology for Baen was the awesome In Space No One Can Hear You Scream, released last Halloween. This man is doing God’s work. Next time you run into him tell him […]

    Pingback by Black Gate » Blog Archive » Future Treasures: The Baen Big Book of Monsters, edited by Hank Davis - December 28, 2014 4:01 pm

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