The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Eleven • 2017 • SF&F anthology by Jonathan Strahan

★★★★

The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Eleven

Summary: 28 stories spread over some 600 pages, no novellas this time. There is something in it for everyone and I recommend buying it. This year, Strahan seems to love fairy tales – with five of them included, it was a bit too much for my taste. Overall quality was better than last year’s, though. As with nearly every anthology, you probably won’t like each and every story, but there are gems in it, some of them outstanding. Many of the stories are available online, but if you’re like me, I’m not willing to hunt down the best of them and just let Strahan lead my way.

On a personal note, I didn’t like the inclusion of horror stories at all – I don’t like them or even hate them. It would be fair at least to mark the story’s genre such that I could simply skip them. At least, this time only two such stories where included.

Outstanding stories were

  • Foxfire, Foxfire • SF&F crossover novelette by Yoon Ha Lee
  • Laws of Night and Silk • High Fantasy short story by Seth Dickinson
  • Everyone from Themis Sends Letters Home • SF short story by Genevieve Valentine

Contents:

  • 17 • ★★★★ • The Future is Blue • dystopic SF novelette by Catherynne M. Valente • review
  • 39 • ★★ • Mika Model • SF short story by Paolo Bacigalupi • review
  • 53 • ★★★ •  Spinning Silver • Fairy tale Rumpelstilchen retold by Naomi Novik • review
  • 81 • ★★★ •  Two’s Company • First Law fantasy short story by Joe Abercrombie •  review
  • 101 • ★★★★ • You Make Pattaya • Near Future con-man short story by Rich Larson •  review
  • 117 • ★★★★ • You’ll Surely Drown Here If You Stay • Weird novelette by Alyssa Wong • review
  • 143 • ★★★+ • A Salvaging of Ghosts • SF short story in Xuyan universe by Aliette de Bodard • review
  • 155 • ★★★ • Even the Crumbs Were Delicious • Hänsel und Gretel turned to SF short story by Daryl Gregory • review
  • 173 • ★★★ • Number Nine Moon • Hard SF short story by Alex Irvine • review
  • 195 • ★ • Things with Beards • Weird short story by Sam J. Miller • I didn’t get at all what this story was about, couldn’t get into it
  • 209 • ☆ • Successor, Usurper, Replacement, Alice Sola Kim • Horror – didn’t read
  • 227 • ★★★★+ • Laws of Night and Silk • High Fantasy short story by Seth Dickinson • review
  • 247 • ★★★ • Touring with the Alien • First contact SF novelette by Carolyn Ives Gilman • review
  • 281 • ★★+ • The Great Detective • Steampunk novelette by Delia Sherman • review
  • 317 • ★★★★+ • Everyone from Themis Sends Letters Home • SF short story by Genevieve Valentine • review
  • 343 • ★★+ • Those Shadows Laugh • Geoff Ryman • review
  • 369 • ★★★ • Seasons of Glass and Iron • fairy tale short story by Amal El-Mohtar • review
  • 385 • ★★★ •  The Art of Space Travel • SF novelette by Nina Allan • review
  • 417 • ☆ • Whisper Road (Murder Ballad No. 9) • Caitlín R. Kiernan • I despise horror. For those that like that genre, this story might also be pointless. Especially within an anthology called „Best SF and Fantasy of the Year“ – this story doesn’t contain SF, nor fantasy at all. Just (one? or) two girls on a road trip after having shot an elderly couple.
  • 429 • ★★★★+ • Red Dirt Witch • Urban Fantasy short story by N.K. Jemisin • review
  • 449 • ★★ • Red as Blood and White as Bone • Fairy tale novelette by Theodora Goss • review
  • 471 • ★★★ •  Terminal • SF short story by Lavie Tidhar • review
  • 487 • ★★★★★ •  Foxfire, Foxfire • SF&F crossover novelette by Yoon Ha Lee • review
  • 509 • ★★+ • Elves of Antarctica • CliFi short story by Paul McAuley • review
  • 527 • ★★★ • The Witch of Orion Waste and the Boy Knight • fairy tale shor story by E. Lily Yu • review
  • 543 • ★★★★ • Seven Birthdays • SF short story by Ken Liu • review
  • 561 • ★★★★ • The Visitor from Taured • SF novelette by Ian R. MacLeod • review
  • 585 • ★★★ • Fable • Fairy taleish metafiction short story by Charles Yu • review
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