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New Treasures: The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016, edited by Karen Joy Fowler and John Joseph Adams

Thursday, November 17th, 2016 | Posted by John ONeill

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Last year Mariner Books added an inaugural SF and fantasy volume, The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, to their highly regarded annual anthology series, which includes Best American Short Stories, Best American Mystery Stories, Best American Science and Nature Writing, and others. John Joseph Adams is the series editor; the 2015 edition was edited by Joe Hill and was one of the stronger Best of the Year anthologies from last year. (Check out the compete TOC for that first volume here.)

This year’s volume is edited by Karen Joy Fowler. It includes fantasy tales by Sofia Samatar, Rachel Swirsky, Salman Rushdie, Maria Dahvana Headley, Sam J. Miller, and others, and science fiction by Kelly Link, Catherynne M. Valente, Dale Bailey, Charlie Jane Anders, Ted Chiang, and many others.

It was published in trade paperback in October, and includes a foreword by John Joseph Adams, and an introduction by Karen Joy Fowler. It’s the eleventh and last of the major Best of the Year anthologies to appear this year, and it brings to a close the publishing season that began with Nebula Awards Showcase 2016 back in May.

Here’s the complete Table of Contents for The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016.


“Meet Me in Iram” by Sofia Samatar (Meet Me in Iram/Those Are the Pearls)
“Interesting Fact”s by Adam Johnson (Harper’s Magazine)
“The Apartment Dweller’s Bestiary” by Kij Johnson (Clarkesworld)
“The Mushroom Queen” by Liz Ziemska (Tin House)
“Tea Time” by Rachel Swirsky (Lightspeed)
“The Duniazát” by Salman Rushdie (The New Yorker)
“The Thirteen Mercies” by Maria Dahvana Headley (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction)
“Things You Can Buy for a Penny” by Will Kaufman (Lightspeed)
“The Heat of Us: Notes Toward an Oral History” by Sam J. Miller (Uncanny)
“Ambiguity Machines: An Examination” by Vandana Singh (


“The Game of Smash and Recovery” by Kelly Link (Strange Horizons)
“Planet Lion” by Catherynne M. Valente (Uncanny)
“By Degrees and Dilatory Time” by S.L. Huang (Strange Horizons)
“The Daydreamer by Proxy” by Dexter Palmer (The Bestiary)
“Headshot” by Julian Mortimer Smith (Terraform)
“No Placeholder for You, My Love” by Nick Wolven (Asimov’s Science Fiction)
“Lightning Jack’s Last Ride” by Dale Bailey (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction)
“Rat Catcher’s Yellows” by Charlie Jane Anders (Press Start to Play)
“Three Bodies” at Mitanni by Seth Dickinson (Analog Science Fiction & Fact)
“The Great Silence” by Ted Chiang (e-flux journal)

io9 presented descriptions, written by John Joseph Adams, for every story in the collection; check out the article here.

Here’s all eleven of the Best of the Year volumes we covered this year:

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, edited by Gardner Dozois
Year’s Best Weird Fiction, Volume 3, edited by Simon Strantzas and Michael Kelly
The Best Horror of the Year, Volume Eight, edited by Ellen Datlow

That’s a lot of great reading! And it should tide you over until May of 2017, when it starts all over again.

The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016 was published by Mariner Books on October 4, 2016. It is 320 pages, priced at $14.95 in trade paperback and $9.99 for the digital edition. Click on the images above for bigger versions.

See all of our coverage of the best new fantasy here.

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