The thirty-two stories in this collection imaginatively take us far across the universe, into the very core of our beings, to the realm of the gods, and the moment just after now. Included here are the works of masters of the form and of bright new talents, including:
John Barnes, Elizabeth Bear, Damien Broderick, Karl Bunker, Paul Cornell, Albert E. Cowdrey, Ian Creasey, Steven Gould, Dominic Green, Nicola Griffith, Alexander Irvine, John Kessel, Ted Kosmatka, Nancy Kress, Jay Lake, Rand B. Lee, Paul McAuley, Ian McDonald, Maureen F. McHugh, Sarah Monette, Michael Poore, Robert Reed, Adam Roberts, Chris Roberson, Mary Rosenblum, Geoff Ryman, Vandana Singh, Bruce Sterling, Lavie Tidhar, James Van Pelt, Jo Walton, Peter Watts, Robert Charles Wilson, and John C. Wright.
Supplementing the stories are the editor's insightful summation of the year's events and a lengthy list of honorable mentions, making this book both a valuable resource and the single best place in the universe to find stories that stir the imagination, and the heart.
Continuing the annual tradition, award-winning editor Dozois selects 32 of 2009's strongest short fiction pieces from print and online venues. The authors of these stories are almost all experienced and prolific, with many award winners and few surprise newcomers to be found. The offerings run the gamut of science fiction: for example, Nicola Griffith's "It Takes Two" explores love through chemical attraction, John Barnes's "Things Undone" is a time-blurring exploration of alternate history, and John Kessel's "Events Preceding the Helvetican Renaissance" is a far-future adventure. This smorgasbord of thought-provoking fiction ensures that any reader will likely find something appealing. Rounding out the collection is Dozois's writeup of all things 2009 SF: fiction, nonfiction, media, awards, and obituaries.