The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2017 Edition

The full line-up of Rich Horton’s The Year’s Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2017 Edition has been announced – it includes my novella, “The Vanishing Kind”, published this year in F&SF. Here’s the full Table of Contents:

“Seven Ways of Looking at the Sun-Worshippers of Yul-Katan” by Maggie Clark, Analog
“All that Robot Shit” by Rich Larson, Asimov’s
“Project Empathy” by Dominica Phetteplace, Asimov’s
“Lazy Dog Out” by Suzanne Palmer, Asimov’s
“The Visitor from Taured” by Ian R. MacLeod, Asimov’s
“Openness” by Alexander Weinstein, Beloit Fiction Journal
“In Skander, for a Boy” by Chaz Brenchley, Beneath Ceaseless Skies
“Laws of Night and Silk” by Seth Dickinson, Beneath Ceaseless Skies
“Blood Grains Speak Through Memories” by Jason Sanford, Beneath Ceaseless Skies
“Rager in Space” by Charlie Jane Anders, Bridging Infinity
“Ozymandias” by Karin Lowachee, Bridging Infinity
“The Bridge of Dreams” by Gregory Feeley, Clarkesworld
“Everyone from Themis Sends Letters Home” by Genevieve Valentine, Clarkesworld
“Things with Beards” by Sam J. Miller, Clarkesworld
“Innumerable Glimmering Lights” by Rich Larson, Clockwork Phoenix 5
“Between Nine and Eleven” by Adam Roberts, Crises and Conflicts
“Red of Tooth and Cog” by Cat Rambo, F&SF
“The Vanishing Kind” by Lavie Tidhar, F&SF
“A Fine Balance” by Charlotte Ashley, F&SF
“Empty Planets” by Rahul Kanakia, Interzone
“Fifty Shades of Grays” by Steven Barnes, Lightspeed
“I’ve Come to Marry the Princess” by Helena Bell, Lightspeed
“RedKing” by Craig deLancey, Lightspeed
“A Non-Hero’s Guide to The Road of Monsters” by A.T. Greenblatt, Mothershipship Zeta
“Dress Rehearsal” by Adrian Tchaikovsky, Now We Are Ten
“The Plague Givers” by Kameron Hurley, Patreon
“Gorse Daughter, Sparrow Son” by Alena Indigo Anne Sullivan, Strange Horizons
“The Magical Properties of Unicorn Ivory” by Carlos Hernandez, The Assimilated Cuban’s Guide to Quantum Santeria
“Something Happened Here, But We’re Not Quite Sure What It Was” by Paul McAuley,
“That Game We Played During the War” by Carrie Vaughn,



Collectors Edition – Central Station

This special collectors edition of Central Station is strictly limited to 100 hardcover signed copies in slipcase. The book is designed by Pedro Marques, and the slipcase cover and back art reproduces the fantastic Sarah Anne Langton travel poster artwork. You can pre-order them here – once they’re gone, they’re gone!


Exclusive to this volume is the first appearance in print of “Crabapple”, a part of Central Station that was not included in the final novel from Tachyon.


The Weimar Years

I came back to the UK in the autumn of 2011 – just over 5 years ago, now. I’d weathered out the then-current recession in warmer climates very far from the preoccupations of the West – a year on a remote island in Vanuatu, a couple more in Laos (where incidentally I wrote Osama, a novel about the on-going war being waged by the West, and its consequences) – and the return was something of a psychic shock.

The West changed while I’d been away. What I felt most keenly during that winter, besides the cold, was the new wind that was blowing. The rise of right-wing ideologies, the anti-immigrant rhetoric, the sense of anger and fear coming to the fore. They were all present and palpable, and it was then that I began to imagine the book that would become A Man Lies Dreaming.

That novel came out in 2014 in the UK, and 2016 in the US. In it, a populist demagogue runs for office on a platform of explicit anti-immigrant and racist ideology, by-gone nationalism. As his supporters terrorise the streets and immigrants fear for their lives, the man rises to power, winning the election, ushering in the new age.

It is hard for me to be surprised by Brexit, and by Trump. Horrified, maybe, but not surprised. And at this point, the real surprise would be if Le Pen does not sweep to Victory in France next.

My book wasn’t exactly… popular. Adult colouring books and books about dragons are probably more comforting right now. Still. Here we are.

And right now, to be a Muslim in the US must feel a lot like being a Jew in 1933 Germany, when another populist demagogue ran on a similar platform and was elected to power. It is hardly surprising: the West has been conducting an open war on Islam for the past 16 years, with hundreds of thousands of dead and millions displaced. All those refugees must come from somewhere. And right now, to ask “how did we get here?” we’d have to look not at Trump or Farage but their mild-mannered predecessors, the music hall duo of Bush and Blair, and the politicians who carried on their legacy. Secretly, I think, everyone knew this was coming. How could you not? All this while, we’ve been living through the years of the Weimar Republic: it’s just that the party has finally come to an end.


Under the Eaves

“Under the Eaves”, from Central Station, is online this month at Lightspeed Magazine. There is also a mini-interview with me about the story.

In early morning, the solitary shrine to St. Cohen of the Others, on the corner of Levinsky, sat solitary and abandoned beside the green. Road cleaners crawled along the roads, sucking up dirt, spraying water and scrubbing, a low hum of gratitude filling the air as they gloried in this greatest of tasks, the momentary holding back of entropy.

By the shrine a solitary figure knelt. Miriam Jones, Mama Jones of Mama Jones’ shebeen around the corner, lighting a candle, laying down an offering, a broken electronics circuit as of an ancient television remote control, obsolete and useless.

“Guard us from the Blight and from the Worm, and from the attention of Others,” Mama Jones whispered, “and give us the courage to make our own path in the world, St. Cohen.”

The shrine did not reply. But then, Mama Jones did not expect it to, either.

Central Station can be purchased from Amazon or AmazonUK or elsewhere.

Central Station

Award, you say?

It seems we unexpectedly won an award this weekend! The Apex Book of World SF 4, edited by Mahvesh Murad (the first volume with me as Series Editor) picked up an inaugural Imadjinn for Best Anthology, with publisher Jason Sizemore on hand to accept it (it’s so shiny, you can see his reflection in it!).

Congratulations to Mahvesh and of course to all our contributors!