Feeling Very Strange: The Slipstream Anthology

James Patrick Kelly and John Kessel, eds.

Featuring the 2007 Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award nominee
 “You Have Never Been Here” by M. Rickert


These ambitious stories of visionary strangeness between literature and popular culture defy the conventions of science fiction. Tales by Michael Chabon, Karen Joy Fowler, Jonathan Lethem, Carol Emshwiller, George Saunders, and others pull the reader into a vivid dreamspace and embrace the knowledge that life today is increasingly surreal.


Feeling Very Strange: The Slipstream Anthology

by James Patrick Kelly and John Kessel, eds.

ISBN: 9781892391353

Published: 2006

Available Format(s): Trade Paperback

If it is true that the test of a first-rate mind is its ability to hold two contradictory ideas at the same time, then we live in a century when it takes a first-rate mind just to get through the day. We have unprecedented access to information; cognitive dissonance is a banner headline in our morning papers and radiates silently from our computer screens. Slipstream, poised between literature and popular culture, embraces the dissonance.

These ambitious stories of visionary strangeness defy the conventions of science fiction. Tales by Michael Chabon, Karen Joy Fowler, Jonathan Lethem, Carol Emshwiller, George Saunders, and others pull the reader into a vivid dreamspace and embrace the knowledge that life today is increasingly surreal.

“Oh, these stories!… Don’t stop until all have been read.”
Booklist, starred review

“Is Slipstream just science fiction and fantasy that doesn’t know that it’s science fiction or fantasy? Or is it more than that? Decide for yourself by slipping into short stories that are superb, whatever you choose to call them, from Lethem, VanderMeer, Chabon, Waldrop, and others.”

“At last we have our definitive collection…. And once again, we can rejoice that revolution after revolution will be printed, not televised.”
The Agony Column

“Worth buying? Well if you want to be the hippest cat on the block, then yes.”
SF Crowsnest

“Intriguing stories…plenty of good reading.”
Publishers Weekly

“Leave it to Tachyon, one of the most exhilarating and intellectually probing small presses, to put out a book like this. We hope it makes its way out of what the editors call the “ghetto of the fantastic” and into the mainstream. This book is a joy and could easily become a staple of college syllabi in the not-so-distant future.”
Time Out Chicago

“…whether you’re interested in the boundaries of slipstream or not, Feeling Very Strange is a terrific collection of stories….”
Intergalactic Medicine Show

“If you read the contents of Feeling Very Strange in linear order (I recommend that you do), you will actually have a nonlinear, information-building, increasingly exhilarating experience.”
Science Fiction Studies, Vol. 34

“I’ve seldom read an anthology in which every story works so well both as a stand-alone and as an element in a greater whole. Heed its contributors and marvel that so diverse a group sings such fine distinctive solos and yet harmonizes so well. Credit Kessel and Kelly, too, for the grace of their introduction, the art of the book’s arrangement, and the modesty of their editorial presence.”
—Michael Bishop

“I expect to wake up as a giant cockroach tomorrow morning. Can anything really be better than that?”
Reading the Leaves

James Patrick Kelly is the Hugo, Nebula, and Italia award–winning author of Burn, Think Like a Dinosaur, and Wildlife. He is a member of the faculty of the Stonecoast Creative Writing MFA Program at the University of Southern   Maine. He has co-edited a series of anthologies with John Kessel, described by the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction as “each surveying with balance and care a potentially disputed territory within the field.” Kelly is the technology columnist for Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine and the publisher of the e-book ’zine Strangeways.

John Kessel is a Nebula, Sturgeon, and Locus award winner and the author of Corrupting Dr. Nice, Good News From Outer Space, and The Pure Product. He teaches courses in science fiction, fantasy, and fiction writing at North Carolina State University. His criticism has appeared in Foundation, the Los Angeles Times Book Review, the New York Review of Science Fiction, and Science Fiction Age.

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Visit the James Patrick Kelly and John Kessel websites.

Introduction by John Kessel and Jim Patrick Kelly

“Al” by Carol Emshwiller
“The Little Magic Shop” by Bruce Sterling
“The Healer” by Aimee Bender
“The Specialist’s Hat” by Kelly Link
“Light and the Sufferer” by Jonathan Lethem
“Sea Oak” by George Saunders
“Exhibit H: Torn Pages Discovered in the Vest Pocket of an Unidentified Tourist” by Jeff VanderMeer
“Hell Is the Absence of God” by Ted Chiang
“Lieserl” by Karen Joy Fowler
“Bright Morning” by Jeffrey Ford
“Biographical Notes to ‘A Discourse on the Nature of Causality, with Air-planes’” by Benjamin Rosenbaum
“The God of Dark Laughter” by Michael Chabon
“The Rose in Twelve Petals” by Theodora Goss
“The Lions Are Asleep This Night” by Howard Waldrop
“You Have Never Been Here” by M. Rickert
“I Want My 20th-Century Schizoid Art I-IV” (various contributors)

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