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the genre's premiere review magazine for short SF & Fantasy since 1993
Single author collections

The Doppler Effect: And Other Stories by Allen M. Steele

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The Doppler Effect:

And Other Stories



Allen M. Steele


(Positronic Publishing, April 2017, 206 pp.)


The Doppler Effect”
Frogheads” (from Old Venus, ed. George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois, Bantam, 2015)
Einstein’s Shadow” (from Asimov’s SF, January 2016)

I Stole You: stories from the fae by Kristen Ringman

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I Stole You:

stories from the fae




Kristen Ringman



(Handtype Press, June 2017, pb, 108 pp.)



Reviewed by Nicky Magas

They're all around us, the unseen, the mysterious, the fae. They watch, they stalk, and they love. They steal our hearts, our souls, and our bodies. They are selfish and egalitarian. They are reflections of ourselves. They are everywhere, and they are hungry.

Kristen Ringman presents fourteen short stories of love and consumption in her collection, I Stole You. Each story, told from the perspective of a fae from a different part of the world, tells the tale of the end of a human life. From mournful forest nymphs to vampires to enchanted dogs, Ringman takes readers into a new world and new lives with each story.

The central theme of the collection is life on the outside. Many of Ringman's characters are deaf or have had exposure to the world of deafness. Ringman brings the isolation of that situation to life in the remote settings of her stories and the deeply personal nature of loss, suicide, and internal exploration. It is hard for readers who have never experienced deafness to truly understand the bubble of remoteness that deafness creates, but Ringman does a great job of expressing the concept in ways that are easily accessible to readers, bringing them more fully into the world she wishes to represent.

In spite of their shortness, the stories are beautifully written. Many of them present as little more than vignettes of a brief encounter between human and fae, and the lyrical style Ringman chooses throughout the collection, coupled with the serene outdoor setting of most of the stories, brings a sense of calm to the book no matter how dark the subject matter gets.

Ringman knits the collection together with a consistent first person fae perspective, beginning each story with the phrase, "I stole you." This gives the collection cohesion and combined with the lyrical style, a sense of the poetic. Unfortunately, taken strictly as fantasy prose, this decision actually does a bit of a disservice to each individual story. Although the stories themselves are varied in content and setting, the narrative voices remain more or less indistinguishable from one story to the next. What gives the collection as a whole uniqueness and cohesion robs the individual stories of flavor. This is especially disappointing in the context of the rich and varied cultural backgrounds from which the stories are told.

The short length of the stories likewise restricts the amount of space to tell a story with fully rounded characters. Shortcuts are taken to have characters automatically understand each other either in language or context or both. With few exceptions, there is little tension in each story, and one tends to placidly bleed into another. After reading the first few stories, it's fairly intuitive to figure out how the rest will play out.

It is therefore best recommended that readers walk into this book expecting literary prose. The short, highly stylized stories are forgivably experimental in this light and leave readers with a pleasant sense of the serene.


You Will Grow Into Them by Malcolm Devlin

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You Will Grow Into Them



Malcolm Devlin


Edited by George Sandison and Gary Budden

(Unsung Stories Pub., June 2017, pb, 327 pp.)


Previously unpublished stories:
We All Need Somewhere To Hide”
Songs Like They Used To Play”
The Last Meal He Ate Before She Killed Him”
The Bridge”
Passion Play”
Two Brothers”
Her First Harvest”
The End of Hope Street”

If This Goes Wrong..., edited by Hank Davis

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If This Goes Wrong...



Edited by


Hank Davis



(Baen, January 2017, pb, 368 pp.)



Complaint” by Robert A. Heinlein
Moxon’s Master” by Ambrose Bierce
Whiskabroom” by Alan Arkin
Computers Don’t Argue” by Gordon R. Dickson
The Snowball Effect” by Katherine MacLean
Well Worth the Money” by Jody Lynn Nye
Tic Toc” by Sarah Hoyt
Day of Truce” by Clifford D. Simak
A Subway Named Mobius” by A. J. Deutsch
Experiment” by Fredric Brown
Manners of the Age” by H. B. Fyfe
The Dwindling Sphere” by Wilard E. Hawkins
The Creature from Cleveland Depths” by Fritz Leiber
Time Fuze” by Randall Garrett
“—And He Built a Crooked House” by Robert A. Heinlein
Instinct” by Lester del Rey

The Unreal and the Real: The Selected Short Stories of Ursula K. Le Guin

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The Unreal and the Real:


The Selected Short Stories of Ursula K. Le Guin



by Ursula K. Le Guin



(Saga Press, October 2016, 736 pp., hc)




The Best of Bova, Vol. 1, by Ben Bova

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The Best of Bova: Volume 1

by Ben Bova

(Baen, February 2016, 432 pages)


"The Long Way Back" (Amazing, February 1960)
"Inspiration" (F&SF, April 1994)
"Vince's Dragon" (Dragons of Darkness, Ace, October 1981)
"The Last Decision" (Stellar #4, Del Rey, May 1978)
"Fitting Suits" (Analog, May 1990)
"A Small Kindness" (Analog, April 1983)
"Born Again" (Analog, May 1984)
"Blood of Tyrants" (Amazing, May 1970)
"Bushido" (Analog, July 1992)
"Sam Gunn" (F&SF, October 1983)
"Amorality Tale" (The Astral Mirror, Tor, October 1985)
"A Country for Old Men" (Going Interstellar, Baen, June 2012)
"Priorities" (Analog, December 1971)
"To Be or Not" (Maxwell's Demons, Baronet, September 1978)
"To Touch a Star" (The Universe, Bantam Spectra, November 1987)
"Risk Assessment" (The Williamson Effect, Tor, May 1996)
"Men of Good Will" (Galaxy, June 1964)
"Foeman, Where Do You Flee?" (Galaxy, January 1969)
"Old Timer's Game" (Carbide Tipped Pens, Tor, December 2014)
"The Man Who Hated Gravity" (Analog, July 1989)
"Zero Gee" (Again, Dangerous Visions, Doubleday, March 1972)
"Test in Orbit" (Analog, September 1965)
"Fifteen Miles" (F&SF, May 1967)
"A Slight Miscalculation" (F&SF, August 1971)

Insistence of Vision by David Brin

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Insistence of Vision


David Brin



(The Story Plant, March 2016, 374 pp.)


Introduction by Vernor Vinge
The Heresy of Science Fiction” by David Brin
Insistence of Vision” (Twelve Tomorrows, Technology Review’s Science Fiction Edition, July 2013)
Transition Generation” (Project Hieroglyph, 2014)
Chrysalis” (Analog, August 2014)
Stones of Significance” (first appeared in a special edition, Lamps on the Brow, then in the special January 2000 issue of Analog magazine)
News From 2035: A Glitch in Medicine Cabinet 3.5” (Tomorrow Happens, NESFA Press, 2003)
HOW WE’LL ENDURE (Tales of the Coss Domination)
The Logs” (Shadows of the New Sun: Stories in Honor of Gene Wolfe, ed. Bill Fawcett and J.E. Mooney, Tor, 2013)
The Tumbledowns of Cleopatra Abyss” (Old Venus, ed. by Gardner Dozois and George R. R. Martin, 2015)
Eloquent Elepents Pine Away for the Moon’s Crystal Forests” (Space Cadets, the special printing for the Los Angeles World Science Fiction Convention, ed. Mike Resnick, SCIFI press, 2006)
Mars Opposition” (Analog, January 2005)
A Professor at Harvard” (Analog, July 2003)
I Could’ve Done Better” by Gregory Benford and David Brin (Jim Baen’s Universe, ed. Eric Flint, 2006)
Paris Conquers All” by David Brin and Gregory Benford (War of the Worlds: Global Dispatches, ed. Kevin J. Anderson [Bantam, Doubleday, Dell], 1989)
A Retrospective by Jules Verne” by David Brin and Gregory Benford
Fortitude” (Science Fiction Age, January 1996)
An Ever-Reddening Glow” (Analog, February 1996)
The Diplomacy Guild” (Isaac’s Universe Volume 1: The Diplomacy Guild, ed. Martin H. Greenberg [Grafton], 1990)
The Other Side of the Hill” (Science Fiction Age, November 1994)
Avalon Probes” (Analog, 2013)
Six-Word Tales” (appeared as “Very Short Stories” in Wired magazine, Issue 14.11, November 2006)
Reality Check” (Nature, March 16, 2000)
Waging War with Reality” (Styles of Creation, edited by George Slusser and Eric S. Rabkin, 1992)
Afterword & Book Notes

Worst Contact, edited by Hank Davis

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Worst Contact

edited by

Hank Davis

(Baen, January 2016, 384 pp., pb)


Puppet Show” by Fredric Brown
Contact!” by David Drake
The Flat-Eyed Monster” by William Tenn
The Power” by Murray Leinster
Early Model” by Robert Sheckley
Her Sister's Keeper” by Sarah A. Hoyt
Plaything” by Larry Niven
Random Sample” by T. P. Caravan
No Love in all of Dwingeloo” by Tony Daniel
First Contact, Sort Of” by Karen Haber & Carol Carr
Fortitude” by David Brin
They're Made Out of Meat” by Terry Bisson
Alien Stones” by Gene Wolfe
Pictures Don't Lie” by Katherine MacLean
Backwardness” by Poul Anderson
Dodger Fan” by Will Stanton
No Shoulder to Cry On” by Hank Davis
Hornet's Nest” by Lloyd Biggle, Jr.
Protected Species” by H. B. Fyfe
The Cage” by A. Bertram Chandler
Shadow World” by Clifford D. Simak

5 Days in May, edited by John C. Bodin & Ron Collins

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5 Days in May:

The Greatest Spectacle in Science Fiction


(An anthology of Indianapolis 500 Science Fiction)




John C. Bodin & Ron Collins


(Skyfox publishing, May 2015, 140 pp.)


Neighbors on Gasoline Alley” (2014)
Speeding” (2013)
Oh-oh” (2002)
Ghost of a Chance” (2015, original to this volume)
The Day the Track Stood Still” (2003)

The Best of Gregory Benford, ed. by David G. Hartwell

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The Best of Gregory Benford

Edited by David G. Hartwell

(Subterranean Press, July 2015)


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