Beyond the Aquila Rift
By Alastair Reynolds
This is an amazing collection of some of the best short fiction ever written in the SF genre, by an author acclaimed as 'the mastersinger of space opera' THE TIMES.With an introduction by noted SF critic Johnathan Strahan, this collection of twenty short stories, novellettes and novellas includes MINLA'S FLOWERS, SIGNAL TO NOISE, TROIKA, and seven previous uncollected stories, including TRAUMA POD, THE WATER THIEF and IN BABELSBERG.Alastair Reynolds has won the Sidewise Award and been nominated for The Hugo Awards for his short fiction. One of the most thought-provoking and accomplished short-fiction writers of our time, this collection is a delight for all SF readers
By Adam Roberts
A man is about to kill a cow. He discusses life and death and his right to kill with the compliant animal. He begins to suspect he may be about to commit murder. But kills anyway ...It began when the animal rights movement injected domestic animals with artificial intelligences in bid to have the status of animals realigned by the international court of human rights. But what is an animal that can talk? Where does its intelligence end at its machine intelligence begin? And where might its soul reside?As we place more and more pressure on the natural world and become more and more divorced, Adam Roberts' new novel posits a world where nature can talk back, and can question us and our beliefs.Adam Roberts is an award-winning author at the peak of his powers and each new novel charts an exciting new direction while maintaining a uniformly high level of literary achievement.
Bob Shaw SF Gateway Omnibus
By Bob Shaw
From the vaults of The SF Gateway, the most comprehensive digital library of classic SFF titles ever assembled, comes an ideal introduction to the work of the award-winning Bob Shaw. Best known for his extraordinary novel of 'slow glass', Other Days, Other Eyes, Bob Shaw was a fan favourite at conventions for his hysterical 'serious scientific talks'. This omnibus contains three of his finest works: Orbitsville, A Wreath of Stars and The Ragged Astronauts.Orbitsville: Racing from the certain vengeance of Earth's tyrant ruler, space captain Vance Garamond flees the Solar System. And discovers the almost unimaginably vast spherical structure soon to become famous as 'Orbitsville' - a new home for Earth's huddled masses.A Wreath of Stars:Thornton's Planet is an anti-neutrino planet detected on its approach to Earth. It can be seen only through the newly developed magniluct lenses and its arrival causes a wave of panic. When its course carries it past the earth, interest in Thornton's Planet wanes. But the visit of Thornton's Planet has had effects on Earth further-ranging than anyone could have imagined.The Ragged Astronauts:Land and Overland - twin worlds a few thousand miles apart. On Land, humanity faces a threat to its very survival - an airborne species, the ptertha, has declared war on humankind, and is actively hunting for victims. The only hope lies in migration. Through space to Overland. By balloon.
The Black Gondolier
By Fritz Leiber
Announcing a new collection of stories by Fritz Leiber. Assembled here is a selection of Mr. Leiber's best horrific tales, many of which have been virtually unobtainable for decades. From the riveting "Spider Mansion" and "The Phantom Slayer" from Weird Tales to the more recent "Lie Still, Snow White" and "Black Has Its Charms" from rare, small-press magazines, this collection provides an overview of Leiber's fifty-plus years as an acknowledged master of the weird tale.While much of Leiber's seminal science-fiction and fantasy remains in print, his work in the field of supernatural horror has been sadly neglected until now. Edited by John Pelan and Steve Savile.
By Susan Shwartz
Byzantium lies at the intersection of East and West, in the heart of the most opulent empire the world has ever known. Warrior Prince Marric has to fight for his right to defend his position as heir of the kingship. Last in the powerful line of kings descended from Alexander the Great, he is ordained by the gods of the people to rule alongside his beloved and wise sister, Alexa. But a sorcerer of dark magic has usurped the throne and Marric is exiled. To win back his rule, he must learn the arts of magic in order to defeat the dark sorcerer. In the land of Egypt, amidst the slave markets and the luxurious perfumed villas of the wealthy, he encounters a silver-haired slave girl who can teach him the arts of magic. For Marric knows that he cannot vanquish his enemy with sword and strength alone.
The Bell, the Book and the Spellbinder
By Brad Strickland, John Bellairs
When Fergie falls under the spell of an evil sorcerer, Johnny Dixon and Professor Childermass risk their own lives to save him.
By Melissa Scott
Governed by two political rulers, the planet Burning Bright is the location of the biggest virtual reality game in the universe. Quinn Lioe is tangled in a web of love and suspense when she becomes determined to play at the center of the virtual reality world and gets stuck in the war between the two empires. This science fiction adventure is one of Scott's best and the complex futuristic world is unforgettable.
By James E. Gunn
Although the short stories in this collection take place in the distant future and within fictional landscapes, the themes that James Gunn examines are the perpetual issues of the human race. These stories revolve around the testing of man's true character - a problem that Gunn, through his powerful plot construction, proves is universal.
The Bird of Time
By George Effinger
Far into the future, Hartstein's graduation present from his grandparents was a wonderful trip into the past. He had a long future in the doughnut industry to look forward to but this trip was the icing on the cake. It had been a long time since that first experiment in time travel was successfully pulled off, although not without its flaws. Now, in the future, time travel was a lucrative tourist industry. But the time travel industry was keeping one little fact to itself: two percent never came back. This cover-up was the work of the Agency. The Agency knew what others did not: that the past wasn't really the past but a complicated dynamic of individual perceptions of what the past might have been. The past isn't real and reality becomes a state of mind. While selling their particular brand of escapist entertainment and vacation packages, the Agency didn't bother to tell its clients or the populace in general that a war was going on - a time war. The Agency was spending its time in a neck-and-neck battle with the Temporary Underground. The battlefield was none other than the space-time continuum, the weapons were time-shifts and theoretical mathematics. Hartstein had no idea what his trip would be or where it would take him.
The Big Time
By Fritz Leiber
Fritz Leiber (1910-1992) may be best known as a fantasy writer, but he published widely and successfully in the horror and science fiction fields. One of his major SF creations is the Change War, a series of stories and short novels about rival time-traveling forces locked in a bitter, ages-long struggle for control of the human universe where battles alter history and then change it again until there is no certainty about what might once have happened. The most notable work of the series is the Hugo Award-winning novel The Big Time, in which doctors, entertainers, and wounded soldiers find themselves treacherously trapped with an activated atomic bomb inside the Place, a room existing outside of space-time. Leiber creates a tense, claustrophobic SF mystery, and a brilliant, unique locked-room whodunit. Winner of the Hugo Award for best novel, 1956
By George Zebrowski
This collection of 19 horror stories, culled from the career of a writer best known for his literary science fiction, explores horror as a product of the human mind by allowing personal, political, and metaphysical obsessions to unleash terrors that beset these characters and by refusing to rely on genre-typical terrors such as serial killers and ancient curses. The original novella "Black Pockets" depicts a hate so all-consuming that a man makes a bargain to carry out the revenge plot of a dying enemy in order to gain the power to pursue his own victims. In unusual zombie tale, "I Walked with Fidel", Fidel Castro's ideals are slowly betrayed by both Cold War superpowers. And a Kafka-like uneasiness pervades "A Piano Full of Dead Spiders", in which a composer's music actually is the result of spiders walking on piano strings. Posing as philosophical puzzles, the stories gain emotional power from an attention to character development and the insightful investigation of both private and collective nightmares.
Behind the Stars
By George Zebrowski
Part three of the Sunspacers trilogy. Young Max Sorby returns to Earth after spending all of his life on a mobile space habitat, fearing that the only home he has ever known will be lost to him forever.
The Belly of the Wolf
By R. A. MacAvoy
Half-student, half-servant in the military Royal School of Sordaling, where he appears short and ugly to his tall Velonyan companions, Nazhuret is forced out at age 20. He is taken on by Powl - a mysterious individual learned in arts such as astronomy, war and languages - who teaches Nazhuret, above all, to control his body and mind. After several years, Nazhuret begins to find his own way, traveling around Velonya as an itinerant optician and befriending a wolf. Going south, he works as a bouncer in a tavern, where he discovers his mixed heritage: he is part Rezhmian, of a neighboring country often at war with Velonya. When he discovers a plot to kill King Raduf, Nazhuret's training, both of body and mind, is sorely tested. MacAvoy's complex realm is full of confusion and ambiguity, in which, as Powl says, "You, Nazhuret . . . are the lens of the world: the lens through which the world may become aware of itself. The world, on the the other hand, is the only lens in which you can see yourself."
By James E. Gunn
Scientist John Wilson cannot deny the accusations coming from the beautiful blonde girl with the burning eyes, nor can he refuse her offer. But in accepting her proposal, John must forego his first love, science, and resign himself to the will of a higher power - magic. Now the door to his past has slammed shut with terrifying finality, and his future holds a horror that no rational mind can fathom. Will The Burning separate John from the comfort of the reality he loves so dearly or will it open doors in his mind that had been locked...until she arrived?
By Robin W. Bailey
Everyone, even Frost, thought that she was an ordinary mother and wife. But she begins a quest to find out who she is after the unforgiving grip of death snatches her husband and two sons from her loving arms. Her identity found, this mother and wife turned witch and swordswoman vows to travel the world fighting the very source of evil. Join Frost on her journey as she wields her mighty demonblade to slay all evil that crosses her path.
Bride of the Castle
By John DeChancie
Gene and Linda's wedding seems to bring out the best in Castle Perilous...even if that's not much better than the worst. When the happy groom suddenly prefers confronting barbarians over entertaining his wedding guests, a battle ensues that will change his life, infuriate his bride, and make for one bizarre wedding day!
By William C. Dietz
Max Maxon is an ex-marine who makes his living with a gun. Sasha Casad is a rich teenager trying to catch the next spaceship home. Max's job is to get her there alive. Somebody's trying to stop them--somebody with plenty of money and firepower. That doesn't bother Max. A contract is a contract. Against all odds, he's going to fulfill this one. And then he's going to make somebody pay!
By George Effinger
Long identified as a science fiction writer, except in his own eyes, George Alec Effinger had some of his biggest critical and commercial success with a series even he recognized and characterized as SF. Set in the marvelously realized, imaginary Muslim city of Budayeen, the three novels, When Gravity Fails, A Fire in the Sun and The Exile Kiss garnered rave reviews, award nominations and a wide readership. In addition, Effinger came to be recognized as one of the foundational writers of cyberpunk. Although the novels are perhaps how Budayeen and their hero, Marid Audran, are best known, there are a handful of shorter pieces that add to the vividly drawn and deeply authentic picture of an imagined world and seven short stories, the first part of an uncompleted novel and a story fragment add to the mental images of this exotic and yet somehow completely familiar city and world that Effinger created. This book was originally published by Golden Gryphon Press and comes with a Forword and story notes by Effinger's widow, Barbara Hambly. The lead story in this collection, "Schrodinger's Kitten," won the Hugo, Nebula and Seiun Awards.
The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World
By Harlan Ellison
"It crouches near the center of creation. There is no night where it waits. Only the riddle of which terrible dream will set it loose. It beheaded mercy to take possession of that place. It feasts on darkness from the minds of men. No one has ever seen its eyeless face. When it sleeps we know a few moments of peace. But when it breathes again we go down in fire and mate with jackals. It knows our fear. It has our number. It waited for our coming and it will abide long after we have become congealed smoke. It has never heard music, and shows its fangs when we panic. It is the beast of our savage past, hungering today, and waiting patiently for the mortal meal of all our golden tomorrows. It lies waiting." - Harlan Ellison
Blue Remembered Earth
By Alastair Reynolds
BLUE REMEMBERED EARTH is the first volume in a monumental trilogy tracing the Akinya family across more than ten thousand years of future history ... out beyond the solar system, into interstellar space and the dawn of galactic society.One hundred and fifty years from now, in a world where Africa is the dominant technological and economic power, and where crime, war, disease and poverty have been banished to history, Geoffrey Akinya wants only one thing: to be left in peace, so that he can continue his studies into the elephants of the Amboseli basin.But Geoffrey's family, the vast Akinya business empire, has other plans. After the death of Eunice, Geoffrey's grandmother, erstwhile space explorer and entrepreneur, something awkward has come to light on the Moon, and Geoffrey is tasked - well, blackmailed, really - to go up there and make sure the family's name stays suitably unblemished. But little does Geoffrey realise - or anyone else in the family, for that matter - what he's about to unravel.Eunice's ashes have already have been scattered in sight of Kilimanjaro. But the secrets she died with are about to come back out into the open, and they could change everything.Or shatter this near-utopia into shards ...