Short novels are movie-length narratives that may well be the perfect length for science fiction stories. This audio collection presents the best-of-the-best short science fiction novels published in 2013 by current and emerging masters of this vibrant form.
In Earth I, by Stephen Baxter, a search among the stars to ferret out the origins of mankind amidst the Xaian normalisation digs up many surprises.
In Success, by Michael Blumlein, a brilliant but erratic biologist studying epigenetics struggles to hang onto his grip on everyday life as he writes his ground-breaking tome.
In Feral Moon, by Alexander Jablokov, the Alliance military is invading Phobos to retrieve dead bodies for later repatriation, but stiff resistance is putting the operation into serious doubt.
In The Weight of the Sunrise, by Vylar Kaftan, winner of both the Nebula Award and the Sidewise Award for Alternate History, the Incan empire is offered a vaccine, to contain a smallpox out-break, by a Virginian raising funds for the American war against the British.
In One, by Nancy Kress, a boxer down on his luck gains the ability to read minds and grapples round-after-round with the consequences.
In the Great Ship story Precious Mind, by Robert Reed, an immortal captain who has been living incognito for hundreds of years is kidnaped to help salvage an ancient derelict spaceship.
Finally, in the Poirot-like mystery, Murder on the Aldrin Express, by Martin L. Shoemaker, murder is suspected in the death of the leader of a Mars expedition when evidence of sabotage is uncovered.
Customer ReviewsSee All
It’s a good collection.
This collection of 2013 novellas is pretty good. The stories are mostly mainstream scifi. The lowlight and highlight, IMO, were “Success” -on the low end, a hardish piece featuring annoying characters and a gobbledygook plot, and on the high end, “The Weight of the Sun”, an interesting alternate history story read by a man with a beautiful, atmospheric, Spanish accent that brought a lot to the telling.
The Audiobook production is excellent - one story has a very strange sound quality, but I think it may be intentional.
So, even though the collection fell short of blowing me away, I think it’s good of it’s kind. The stories are modern and well-told, all good for a little casual diversion.