When my copy of The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Third Annual Collection arrived last week, I was pleased (and a little flattered) to see this quote on the back.
There are roughly ten Year’s Best volumes currently being published in the speculative fiction market, but they all bow before Gardner Dozois’ The Year’s Best Science Fiction… To read Gardner’s The Year’s Best Science Fiction every year is to get the pulse of the entire industry. All the new writers, literary movements, shakeups, and happenings in the field ― it’s all there at your fingertips. ― Black Gate
That’s taken from my article on last year’s volume, The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Second Annual Collection.
I’ve covered eight Best of the Year anthologies so far this year, from editors like Rich Horton, Jonathan Strahan, Neil Clarke, and John Joseph Adams. But the gold standard remains Gardner Dozois’ massive The Year’s Best Science Fiction, now in its 33rd annual volume.
Gardner has been doing this longer than anyone else in the field — his first was Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year: Sixth Annual Collection, the series he took over from Lester Del Rey, way back in 1977. But it’s not just experience that makes his annual anthology the best. It’s also the most comprehensive, with 36 stories — more than 300,000 words — including three novellas (“Gypsy,” by Carter Scholz, “The Children of Gal,” by Allen Steele, the Retrieval Artist tale “Inhuman Garbage” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, and “The Citadel of Weeping Pearls” by Aliette de Bodard).
Dozois’ annual summation of the best of the year — in magazines, collections, anthologies, websites, news and movies — is also one of the liveliest and most entertaining reads of the year, every year.
But the main event, of course, is Gardner’s selections for the best short fiction of the year. Here’s the TOC for this year’s volume.
“The Falls: A Luna Story,” by Ian McDonald
“Three Cups of Grief, By Starlight,” by Aliette de Bodard
“Ruins,” by Eleanor Arnason
“Gypsy,” by Carter Scholz
“Emergence,” by Gwyneth Jones
“Calved,” by Sam J. Miller
“Meshed,” by Rich Larson
“Bannerless,” by Carrie Vaughn
“The Astrakhan, the Homberg, and the Red Red Coat,” by Chaz Brenchley
“Another Word for World,” by Ann Leckie
“City of Ash,” by Paolo Bacigalupi
“The Muses of Shuyedan-18,” by Indrapramit Das
“The Audience,” by Sean McMullen
“Consolation,” by John Kessel
“Botanica Veneris,” by Ian McDonald
“Rates of Change,” by James S.A. Corey
“The Children of Gal,” by Allen M. Steele
“Today I Am Paul,” by Martin L. Shoemaker
“Trapping the Pleistecene,” by James Sarafin
“Machine Learning,” by Nancy Kress
“Silence Like Diamonds,” by John Barnes
“Inhuman Garbage,” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
“Planet of Fear,” by Paul McAuley
“It Takes More Than Muscles to Frown,” by Ned Beauman
“The Daughters of John Demetrius,” by Joe Pitkin
“Hello, Hello,” by Seanan McGuire
“Capitalism in the 22nd Century,” by Geoff Ryman
“Ice,” by Rich Larson
“The Three Resurrections of Jessica Churchill,” by Kelly Robson
“In Panic Town, on the Backward Moon,” by Michael F. Flynn
“The First Gate of Logic,” by Benjamin Rosenbaum
“Billy Tumult,” by Nick Harkaway
“No Placeholder for You, My Love,” by Nick Wolven
“The Game of Smash and Recovery,” by Kelly Link
“A Stopped Clock,” by Madeline Ashby
“Citadel of Weeping Pearls,” by Aliette de Bodard
So far we’ve covered the following Best of the Year volumes for 2016:
Nebula Awards Showcase 2016, edited by Mercedes Lackey
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Ten, edited by Jonathan Strahan
The Best Science Fiction of the Year, Volume 1, edited by Neil Clarke
The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2016, edited by Rich Horton
The Year’s Best Military & Adventure SF 2015, edited by David Afsharirad
The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Novellas 2016, edited by Paula Guran
The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror 2016, edited by Paula Guran
The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016, edited by Karen Joy Fowler and John Joseph Adams
The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Third Annual Collection was published by St. Martin’s Griffin on July 5, 2016. It is 714 pages (675 pages, plus 39 pages of intro material), priced at $40 in hardcover, $22.99 in trade paperback, and $10.99 for the digital edition. The cover is by James Burns.
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