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Future Treasures: The Best Science Fiction of the Year, Volume Three edited by Neil Clarke

Wednesday, March 21st, 2018 | Posted by John ONeill

The Best Science Fiction of the Year 3 Neil Clarke-smallNeil Clarke has only had produced two volumes of his Best Science Fiction of the Year, but it’s already become one of my favorite Year’s Best anthologies — and considering the competition (Dozois, Strahan, Horton, Guran, Kelly, Adams, and Afsharirad, among others), that’s really saying something.

For 2018, in addition to being one of the best, he’s also the first. His Year’s Best anthology will be the first to go on sale, in just two weeks. Here’s the description. (And yes, they’re talking about Rich Horton in that first line. Isn’t it obvious?)

To keep up-to-date with the most buzzworthy and cutting-edge science fiction requires sifting through countless magazines, e-zines, websites, blogs, original anthologies, single-author collections, and more ― a task accomplishable by only the most determined and voracious readers. For everyone else, Night Shade Books is proud to introduce the latest volume of The Best Science Fiction of the Year, a new yearly anthology compiled by Hugo and World Fantasy award–winning editor Neil Clarke, collecting the finest that the genre has to offer, from the biggest names in the field to the most exciting new writers.

The best science fiction scrutinizes our culture and politics, examines the limits of the human condition, and zooms across galaxies at faster-than-light speeds, moving from the very near future to the far-flung worlds of tomorrow in the space of a single sentence. Clarke, publisher and editor in chief of the acclaimed and award-winning magazine Clarkesworld, has selected the short science fiction (and only science fiction) best representing the previous year’s writing, showcasing the talent, variety, and awesome “sensawunda” that the genre has to offer.

Neil’s volume includes stories by Alastair Reynolds, Nancy Kress, Sarah Pinsker, Linda Nagata, Greg Egan, Kelly Robson, Kathleen Ann Goonan, Yoon Ha Lee, Aliette de Bodard, Robert Reed, Rich Larson, Peter Watts, Suzanne Palmer, and many others.

Here’s the complete table of contents.

“A Series of Steaks” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad (Clarkesworld, January 2017)
“Holdfast” by Alastair Reynolds (Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers)
“Every Hour of Light and Dark” by Nancy Kress (Omni, Winter 2017)
“The Last Novelist, or a Dead Lizard in the Yard” by Matthew Kressel (Tor.com, March 2017)
“Shikasta” by Vandana Singh (Visions, Ventures, Escape Velocities, edited by Ed Finn and Joey Eschrich)
“Wind Will Rove” by Sarah Pinsker (Asimov’s Science Fiction, September/October 2017)
“Focus” by Gord Sellar (Analog Science Fiction and Fact, May/June 2017)
“The Martian Obelisk” by Linda Nagata (Tor.com, July 2017)
“Shadows of Eternity” by Gregory Benford (Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers)
“The Worldless” by Indrapramit Das (Lightspeed, March 2017)
“Regarding the Robot Raccoons Attached to the Hull of My Ship” by Rachael K. Jones and Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali (Diabolical Plots, June 2017)
“Belly Up” by Maggie Clark (Analog Science Fiction and Fact, July/August 2017)
“Uncanny Valley” by Greg Egan (Tor.com, August 2017)
“We Who Live in the Heart ” by Kelly Robson (Clarkesworld, May 2017)
“A Catalogue of Sunlight at the End of the World” by A.C. Wise (Sunvault, edited by Phoebe Wagner and Bronte Christopher Wieland)
“Meridian” by Karin Lowachee (Where the Stars Rise, edited by Lucas K. Law and Derwin Mak)
“The Tale of the Alcubierre Horse” by Kathleen Ann Goonan (Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers)
“Extracurricular Activities” by Yoon Ha Lee (Tor.com, February 2017)
“In Everlasting Wisdom” by Aliette de Bodard (Infinity Wars, edited by Jonathan Strahan)
“The Last Boat-Builder in Ballyvoloon” by Finbarr O’Reilly (Clarkesworld, October 2017)
“The Speed of Belief” by Robert Reed (Asimov’s Science Fiction, January/February 2017)
“Death on Mars” by Madeline Ashby (Visions, Ventures, Escape Velocities, edited by Ed Finn and Joey Eschrich)
“An Evening with Severyn Grimes” by Rich Larson (Asimov’s Science Fiction, July/August 2017)
“ZeroS” by Peter Watts (Infinity Wars, edited by Jonathan Strahan)
“The Secret Life of Bots” by Suzanne Palmer (Clarkesworld, September 2017)
“Zen and the Art of Starship Maintenance” by Tobias S. Buckell (Cosmic Powers, edited by John Joseph Adams)

Galactic-Empires-Neil-Clarke-smallerNeil Clarke’s previous anthologies include:

Galactic Empires
More Human Than Human
The Best Science Fiction of the Year, Volume One
The Best Science Fiction of the Year, Volume Two
Clarkesworld: Year Six edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
Clarkesworld: Year Seven, edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
Clarkesworld: Year Eight, edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace

While we’re on the topic of Best of the Year volumes, the 2018 books include:

The Best Science Fiction of the Year, Volume Three edited by Neil Clarke (Night Shade Books, April 3, 2018))
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Twelve, edited by Jonathan Strahan (Solaris, April 17, 2018))
The Year’s Best Military and Adventure SF, Volume 4, edited by David Afsharirad (Baen, June 5, 2018)
The Best Horror of the Year Volume Ten, edited by Ellen Datlow (Night Shade, June 12, 2018)
The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Fifth Annual Collection, edited by Gardner Dozois (St. Martin’s Griffin;, July 3, 2018)
The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2018, edited by Rich Horton (Prime, August 7, 2018)
Nebula Awards Showcase 2018, edited by Jane Yolen (Pyr, August 7, 208)
The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror 2018, edited by Paula Guran (Prime, September 11, 2018)
The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2018, edited by N.K. Jemisin and John Joseph Adams (Mariner Books, October 2, 2018)
The Year’s Best Weird Fiction, Volume Five, edited by Robert Shearman and Michael Kelly (October 2018)

The Best Science Fiction of the Year: Volume Three will be published by Night Shade Books on April 3, 2018. It is 624 pages, priced at $17.99 in trade paperback and $13.99 for the digital edition. The cover is by Chris McGrath; see more details here.

See all of our coverage of the best upcoming SF & fantasy here.

2 Comments »

  1. The darn thing is, if I buy just one, maybe two, of the Best Of The Year anthologies, I miss out on some great stories. If I buy several, I have a lot of overlap. Each year I’m faced with this dilemma. What to do?

    Comment by R.K. Robinson - March 22, 2018 11:15 am

  2. These books really aren’t that expensive — especially if you buy them online. Sure, if you buy three or more, there’s sometimes 10 – 15% overlap. But three trade paperbacks, after discount, is usually around $40. That’s a whole lot of great reading for 40 bucks.

    The BEST OF THE YEAR anthologies are some of the best bargains in the industry. I buy 6-7 every year, and I’m enormously happy with those purchases.

    Comment by John ONeill - March 22, 2018 11:43 pm


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