Over at io9, Charlie Jane Anders delivers her selection of 15 or so anthologies that “show you just how superb science fiction and fantasy storytelling can get.” Tachyon Publications is proud to have four titles among her selections.
The VanderMeers also put out a collection of just cutting-edge fiction in the burgeoning “New Weird” subgenre, including names like Clive Barker, Felix Gilman, Sarah Monette, Jeffrey Ford, China Mieville, and of course Michael Moorcock.
The Secret History of Science Fiction and Fantasy
Lumping these together because it’s sort of a fascinating contrast — the science fiction volume takes off from an essay by Jonathan Lethem about the squandered promise of the genre. If only SF had recognized and coopted authors like Don DeLillo and Thomas Pynchon earlier, we might have had something more literary and less beholden to pulp traditions. (I’m paraphrasing wildly.) James Patrick Kelly and John Kessel put together a collection of what that would look like, including great literary SF writers like Gene Wolfe and Maureen McHugh alongside George Saunders and Lethem himself. The genre questions aside, this winds up being a great bunch of stories. In the fantasy volume, editor Peter S. Beagle appears to have less of an agenda, but he brings together fabulist tales by everyone from Neil Gaiman to Aimee Bender to Yann Martel to Susanna Clarke. Lovely stuff.
The Slipstream movement was aimed at breaking down genre divisions and introducing more weirdness — so it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that the authors featured in this book are largely the same ones as in the Secret History of Science Fiction book and the Best of Crank!. But it’s not as if you can ever get too much of Michael Chabon, Aimee Bender, Jonathan Lethem, George Saunders or Karen Joy Fowler, is it? Plus this has extra Theodora Goss and Howard Waldrop. Consider this an extra helping of literary weirdness.
Be sure to check out the rest of Anders’ fascinating list at io9.
For more of Tachyon’s award-winning and acclaimed anthologies, visit the Tachyon page.
The New Weird, The Secret History of Science Fiction, and The Secret History of Fantasy covers by Ann Monn.
Feeling Very Strange cover by Isabelle Rozenbaum/PhotoAlto with design by John Berry.