Happy release day to Mission Critical, the brand new anthology from Jonathan Strahan, editor of Engineering Infinity (2010), Drowned Worlds (2016), and thirteen volumes of The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year.
In a Facebook post announcing the release today, Jonathan said:
My new book is out in the world! With stories by by Peter F. Hamilton, Yoon Lee, Aliette de Bodard, Greg Egan, Linda Nagata, Gregory Feeley, John Barnes, Tobias Buckell, Jason Fischer & Sean Williams, Carolyn Ives Gilman, John Meaney, Dominica Phetteplace, Allen M. Steele, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, and Peter Watts, [it’s] a mix of great science fiction adventure all based on the idea that when things go wrong you have to do *something*!
I love the stories in the book and am really proud of it. If you’ve ever enjoyed one of my anthologies, if you liked stories like The Martian, if you just want to keep anthologies coming out, or if you just love good short fiction, consider ordering this one.
I’ll second that notion. Jonathan has become one of the most respected and successful anthologists in the field. Back in 2015 I talked about how his book Meeting Infinity was the Most Successful Anthology of the year, and just last year Todd McAulty (author of The Robots of Gotham) opined about How Science Fiction Was Saved by Solaris and Jonathan Strahan.
Todd’s point was that short fiction is still critically important to the field, and that prestige anthologies like Strahan’s Infinity project are still the most reliable way for readers to discover new authors. It’s a premise that a lot of Black Gate readers agree with.
If you enjoy short fiction, or science fiction at all, supporting books like Mission Critical — and the publishers who produce them — is important. I hope you’ll give it a try. And if you enjoy it, I hope you’ll spread the word far and wide. (And if you don’t, why not shut the hell up about it.)
Mission Critical was published in paperback by Solaris today. Here’s the publisher’s description.
HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM…
Life is fragile. The difference between success and failure can come down to nothing – the thread of a screw, the flick of a switch – and when it goes wrong, you fix it. Or someone dies.
Mission Critical takes us from our world, across the Solar System, and out into deep space to tell the stories of people who had to do the impossible.
And do it fast.
Featuring stories by Peter F. Hamilton, Yoon Ha Lee, Aliette de Bodard, Greg Egan, Linda Nagata, Gregory Feely, John Barnes, Tobias S. Buckell, Jason Fischer & Sean Williams, Carolyn Ives Gilman, John Meaney, Dominica Phetteplace, Allen M. Steele, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, and Peter Watts.
And there’s the complete Table of Contents.
When Things Go Wrong, by Jonathan Strahan
“This is Not the Way Home” by Greg Egan
“Rescue Party” by Aliette de Bodard
“Devil in the Dust” by Linda Nagata
“Hanging Gardens” by Gregory Feeley
“The One Who Was There” by John Barnes
“By the Warmth of Their Calculus” by Tobias S. Buckell
“Mutata Superesse” by Jason Fischer and Sean Williams
“The Empty Gun” by Yoon Ha Lee
“Genesong” by Peter F. Hamilton
“Something in the Air” by Carolyn Ives Gilman
“Lost in Splendour” by John Meaney
“The Agreement” by Dominica Phetteplace
“The Fires of Prometheus” by Allen M. Steele
“Ice Breakers” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
“Cyclopterus” by Peter Watts
Our previous coverage of Jonathan’s anthologies include:
The Best of R. A. Lafferty (2019)
How Science Fiction Was Saved by Solaris and Jonathan Strahan by Todd McAulty
Infinity Wars (2017)
Bridging Infinity (2016)
Meeting Infinity (2015)
Distinctive Visions of Earth After Climate Change: Drowned Worlds (2016)
Jonathan Strahan on the Best Short Novels of 2016
A Concentrated Dose of the Best Our Field Has to Offer: Jonathan Strahan’s Best Short Novels 2004-2007
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Six
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Seven (2013)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year Volume Eight (2014)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Nine (2015)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Ten (2016)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Eleven (2017)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Twelve (2018)
The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Thirteen (2019)
Mission Critical was published by Solaris Books on July 9, 2019. It is 416 pages, priced at $11.99 in trade paperback and $6.99 in digital formats. The cover is by Adam Tredowski. See complete details here.
See all our coverage of the best new fantasy and science fiction here.