Winner of six Nebula and two Hugo awards for her fiction, Connie Willis is acclaimed for her gifted imagination and bold invention. Here are eleven of her finest stories, surprising tales in which the impossible becomes real, the real becomes impossible, and strangeness lurks at every turn.
The end of the world comes not with a bang but a series of whimpers over many years in "The Last of the Winnebagos."
The terror of pain and dying gives birth to a startling truth about the nature of the stars, a principle known as the "Schwarzschild Radius."
In "Spice Pogrom," an outrageous colony in outer space becomes the setting for a screwball comedy of bizarre complications, mistaken identities, far-too-friendly aliens - and even true love.
Willis ( Lincoln's Dreams ) demonstrates her sly wit and quirky perspective in this solid collection of 11 previously published science fiction pieces. Romance becomes entangled with interplanetary negotiations when a Navy linguist and the neglected fiancee of an officious NASA diplomat try to keep a visiting alien happy--even though language problems obscure whether the powers-that-be are arranging a space program or a spice pogrom. In a story that will look like SF only to readers who have steered clear of higher education lately, a consultant promoting ``relevantness'' and modern pedagogical theory nips at the heels of professors teaching paleontology at a state university. During the Battle of Britain, a Civil Defense worker gains a disturbing insight into himself and the war from a mysterious volunteer who has an uncanny ability to locate bombing victims buried under rubble. Willis's fondness for Shakespeare translates into two stories: one considers how much text would be left intact if all right-wing, left-wing and special-interest groups could delete the bits of which they do not approve; the other tackles the old conundrum, If Shakespeare wasn't Shakespeare, who was?