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The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-Fourth Annual Collection

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    still the best

    As always this annual collection is the best science fiction anthology of the year. Besides the strong selection of twenty-eight stories, the Summation 2006 is an interesting article that concludes that 2006 was ¿overall a relatively uneventful year¿. Still in this quiet year, Mr. Dozois references Locus magazine stating that ¿there were 2495 books of interest to the SF field¿ excluding a myriad of Internet options and other tie-ins that would dramatically increase the total. All of the chosen twenty-eight are well written with many of the authors highly regarded like Cory Docterow, Robert Charles Wilson, Kage Baker, Alastair Reynolds, Robert Reed, Greg Egan, Elizabeth Bear, Sarah Monette and Stephen Baxter, etc. The best of the best (at least in my opinion) are 'Riding the Crocodile' by Greg Egan in which two immortals consider boldly conspicuously suicide together Robert Charles Wilson¿s Julian: A Christmas Story as two men meet and struggle to survive a wintry night before traveling different life paths and a tour of Venus in Tin Marsh by Michael Stanwick, who according to Mr. Dozois has been writing for over two decades, but I confess I only read any of his works for the first time recently (see THE DRAGONS OF BABEL). Once gain this is a superb compilation as none of the entries are losers and most are excellent exploring the genre from quantum physics communicating with the dead to outer space and beyond 2006 may have been lacking in innovation, but still with quality tales abound prove to be a great year affirmed by Mr. Dozois¿ latest anthology. ---- Harriet Klausner

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    a reviewer

    As always this is a fascinating anthology as much for those stories selected as the best in 2006 as for the essays starting with the Summation, which though Mr. Dozois opens with a ¿relatively uneventful year¿ he quickly affirms otherwise as the publishing world had radical changes. The stories come from a wide variety of sources that prove how vast the options in the field have become. Some tales by famous authors were originally electronic such as ¿I, Row-Boat by Docterow was an on line entry in Flurb I and ¿The Ile of Dogges¿ by Bear and Monette was on Aeon Seven. Others were typically included in magazines such as ¿Tin Marsh¿ by Swanwick and ¿The Djinn¿s Wife¿ by McDonald both in Asimov¿s Sconce Fiction, and ¿Damascus¿ by Gregory and¿ Okanoggin Falls¿ by Gilman in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. Finally, a few were part of what seem like somewhat a dinosaur at least in this anthology: printed books such as ¿Nightingale¿ by Reynolds (see Galactic North). The twenty-eight short stories are solid tales with fan favorites and newcomers included. Each entry is well written and fun to read as the collection covers the gamut of the genre. However, it is Mr. Dozois¿ fabulous ¿Summation¿ that brings together the year in which source diversity keeps expanding making it impossible even for an insomniac lunatic book reviewer to even have heard of some of the tales don¿t even try to ponder how Mr. Dozois finds some of them though all are worthy of inclusion. --- Harriet Klausner

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