Thursday, January 25, 2018

2016 Best SF/F Novelettes

Score: 16 → 8-9 Recommendations


Score: 15

The Visitor From Taured by Ian R. MacLeod  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 09|16
(Near-Future Hard SF) Lita learned Rob's obsession with alternate universes in college, but waning interest in science made it hard for him to explore it.

Score: 14 → 7-8 Recommendations


Score: 13

Touring with the Alien by Carolyn Ives Gilman  Time: 39m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 115
(SF) Months after mysterious aliens scattered their spacecraft across North America, no one has a clue what they want. Avery knows what one of them wants, though: it wants a tour.

Score: 12 → 6-7 Recommendations

You'll Surely Drown Here If You Stay by Alyssa Wong  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueUncanny 10
(Historical Fantasy) In a magical Old West, young Ellis has a love for the desert and an affinity for dead things. Both of these attract unwelcome attention from strangers visiting from back East.

Score: 11

The Art Of Space Travel by Nina Allan  Time: 42m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 07/27/16
(SF/Mainstream) The crew of the new Mars mission are coming to the hotel where Emily works, and her mom is starting to say strange things about her involvement with the last Mars mission.

Score: 10 → 5-6 Recommendations

The Future Is Blue by Catherynne M. Valente  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueDrowned Worlds 2016
(Post Apocalypse) Teenage Tetley lives in a human settlement (one of the last) built on a miles-wide floating garbage dump. She explains why everyone hates her now.

Score: 9

The Jewel And Her Lapidary by Fran Wilde  Time: 56m (Novelette)  IssueTor Novella 05/03/16
(High Fantasy) Two teenage girls, Lin, the last Jewel, and Sima, the last Lapidary, struggle to fight the invaders who've taken the kingdom by treachery.

Score: 8 → 4-5 Recommendations

Prodigal by Gord Sellar  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 12|16
(Near-Future SF) Benji was an ordinary terrier until his master decided to have him sentientized.
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik  Time: 39m (Novelette)  IssueStarlit Wood 2016
(Fairy Tale) Young Miryem supports her family lending money at interest, but things get difficult when someone from Faerie makes her an offer she can’t refuse.
(Hard SF) Davin is spending a year alone on Ekye to observe the local wildlife and, he hopes, to recover his lost creativity.
They Have All One Breath by Karl Bunker  Time: 40m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 12|16
(Post Singularity) James seeks fulfillment through his sculpture, even though it all seems pointless in a perfect world run by Ais.

Score: 7

(SF) The crew of the Themis colony write home about their struggles with a mission and a world that seems to be more than a little off.
Foxfire, Foxfire by Yoon Ha Lee  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 194
(Military Fantasy) Baekdo, a fox who wants to become human, needs one more kill to achieve his goal. A collapsing city in the middle of a civil war seems like a good place to do it but there are complications.
Number Nine Moon by Alex Irvine  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 01.02|16
(Competence SF) In the 2080s, Humanity is abandoning Mars, and Steuby and his companions think they can make money by looting the abandoned settlements at the last minute.
Those Shadows Laugh by Geoff Ryman  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 09.10|16
(Near-Future SF) The secretive parthenogenetic women of Colinas Bravas usually don't allow outsiders into their country, but they invite Ms. Vargas to fix a genetic problem with their children.

Score: 6 → 3-4 Recommendations

Blood Grains Speak Through Memories by Jason Sanford  Time: 40m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 195
(SF) Frere-Jones controls the nanobot "grains" that help protect the ecology in the bit of land she "anchors." She's come to view the grains as a tyranny, but there doesn't seem to be much she can do about it.
Fifty Shades Of Grays by Steven Barnes  Time: 37m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 73
(SF) The end of the world starts when an ambitious marketing guy gets a cryptic assignment to create an ad campaign to "make ugly sexy."
(Near-future SF) Bay lives alone and subsists off things that wash ashore from cruise ships and such. Then Gabby washes up, alive, and complicates her life.
The Charge and the Storm by An Owomoyela  Time: 54m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 02|16
(SF) In a colony on an almost uninhabitable planet, the technologically-superior Su share power with the humans, but some humans want independence.
The Tomato Thief by Ursula Vernon  Time: 46m (Novelette)  IssueApex 80
(Fantasy) Someone (or something) is taking Grandma Harken's tomatoes, but finding the thief leads to a real mystery--and danger.

Score: 5

Red As Blood And White As Bone by Theodora Goss  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 05/04/16
(Historical Fantasy) In Eastern Europe between the wars, Klara works as a kitchen maid. One night she admits a woman she thinks is a lost fairy-tale princesses into the castle.
Teenagers From Outer Space by Dale Bailey  Time: 38m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 119
(Historical SF) In 1955, Nancy's best friend Ellen dates a bad boy who introduces her to Bug Town, where aliens live. Nothing is the same after that.
Unauthorized Access by An Owomoyela  Time: 34m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 76
(Hacker SF) Fresh out of prison for hacking, Aedo gets a request to do an even bigger hack. But why does Energy Davison want to hack its own systems?

Score: 4 → 2-3 Recommendations

A Strange Loop by T.R. Napper  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 262
(SF) In a future Australia, Irving sells his memories for ready cash, hoping to put his life back together. To the extent he still remembers it.
Breaking Water by Indrapramit Das  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 02/10/16
(Zombie) In modern India, Krishna encounters (and ignores) a dead woman's body by the river just before the dead start to walk. He feels guilty and determines to do something about it.
I Married a Monster from Outer Space by Dale Bailey  Time: 42m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 03|16
(SF Humor) Ruth, a 22-year-old Walmart cashier, meets a very weird-and-scary-looking alien, who seems down on his luck, and brings him home with her.
(Mind Uploading) Jix tells how her twin sister left their planet and their god, starting with how they met a handsome offworlder.
Pearl by Aliette de Bodard  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueStarlit Wood 2016
(Space Opera; Xuya) Da Trang earned favor with the Empress because his remora, Pearl, feed him information. He has lost Pearl, but cannot stop searching for it.
Project Empathy by Dominica Phetteplace  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 03|16
(Near-future SF; Project Empathy) Teenage Bel worked as a host at a Blue Cup restaurant in Concord, CA before Blue Cup moved her to San Francisco for special training. Very special.
The Mind Is Its Own Place by Carrie Vaughn  Time: 39m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 09|16
(Hard SF) Mitchell was a navigator on the Francis Drake, but something terrible happened. The doctors tell him he's losing his mind, but he doesn't believe them. If only he could remember what happened.
The Orangery by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 214
(Greek Mythos) The trees in the grove used to be women, and the Guardian protects them zealously from the men who still pursue them.
The Stone War by Ted Kosmatka  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 05.06|16
(Fantasy) From prehistoric times, the stone man crouched on a hill. Every now and then a person would find it and try to get it to do something. But to succeed was to die.
The Three Lives of Sonata James by Lettie Prell  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 10/05/16
(Mind Uploading) The prospect of living forever through "iterations" is still new, and not everyone likes it. Sonata wants to make a statement by declaring she will only upload twice.
The Venus Effect by Joseph Allen Hill2  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 79
(Metafiction) A black author accepts  the challenge of writing a black SF hero, but the police just keep shooting him.

Score: 3

Checkerboard Planet by Eleanor Arnason  Time: 39m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 123
(SF; Lydia Duluth) The AIs contract Lydia to check out an unusual planet and the secretive corporation that's supposed to be developing it.
Extraction Request by Rich Larson  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 112
(Military SF Horror) Elliot's squad of convict-soldiers crash-lands in the middle of a swamp far away from help. Extracting them doesn't seem to be a priority, but something seems to be wrong with the swamp.
Flight from the Ages by Derek Kรผnsken  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 04.05|16
(Fantasy Science) About a thousand years from now, two powerful AIs struggle to prevent the destruction of the multiverse.
(Fairy Tale) Jocelyn is a princess a lot like Sleeping Beauty, but with a much better relationship with the fairies. Not that that helps her.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+2
Jonas And The Fox by Rich Larson  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 116
(SF) Disguised in the body of a dead little boy, Fox needs to escape from the colony before the revolutionary leaders find him. But the boy's brother may be a problem.
Lazarus And The Amazing Kid Phoenix by Jennifer Giesbrecht  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueApex 86
(Superheroes) A kid who was burned to death returns to life as a human torch, eager for revenge. Old Man Gasper has a similar story, a different power, and advises caution.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 SFRevu+1
Lost: Mind by Will McIntosh  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07|16
(SF) Before Mimi dies from Alzheimer's, Walter gets her an illegal consciousness transfer done in India. Then all he has to do is sneak the copy back into the US.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 SFRevu+1
Of the Beast in the Belly by C.W. Johnson  Time: 41m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 04.05|16
(SF) Nawiz has pursued the boy who ruined her life across the galaxy. Before she can get her vengeance, they're both swallowed by a gigantic sea creature, and it will be a struggle merely to survive.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 SFRevu+1
Passelande by Robert Reed  Time: 37m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 11.12|16
(Near-Future SF) Lucas does jobs for backups that their human originals won't agree to. But some backups are more trouble than others.
Patience Lake by Matthew Claxton  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 08|16
(Dystopia) Casey, a disabled vet in a cheap, rebuilt body, tries walking to another city to find work, but trouble is waiting out in the country.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 GDozois+2
Ten Days by Nina Allan  Time: 48m (Novelette)  IssueNow We Are Ten 2016
(Time Travel) Dora will do anything to prove that a woman's 1928 execution for murder was a mistake.
The Bridge of Dreams by Gregory Feeley  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 115
(Hard SF) After centuries of solitude at his post on Pluto, Heimdallr has come to fear that humanity is extinct. Then he receives a summons from the inner solar system.
The Calculations of Artificials by Chi Hui  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 121
(SF AI) Unbeknownst to most people, almost everyone in the world is really a robot. Aixia helps keep the system running, but allows himself to become attached to a human boy he saved.
The Great Detective by Delia Sherman  Time: 42m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 02/17/16
(Steampunk) In 1880s London, Sir Arthur's "Illogic Engine" has gone missing, so he seeks help from Mycroft Holmes.
(Historical Fantasy) Perpetua must pretend to be a man in order to carry on her father's glass business. She makes a great success from glass eyes, even before she realizes how special they are.
The Metal Demimonde by Nick Wolven  Time: 51m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 07.08|16
(SF) A century from now, Tipper works at an automated carnival, in a world with few jobs for humans. She falls in with Luke, a boy trying to make an illegal manual car work.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 NClarke+2
The Mighty Slinger by Karen Lord and Tobias S. Buckell  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueBridging Infinity 2016
(Far-Future SF) Developers are planning to resurface the entire Earth to create properties for people from Mars and Venus. But can an old singer and his band rally the solar system against it?
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 NClarke+2
The Portal by Debbie Urbanski  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueThe Sun 483
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2 BASFF+1
The Scrape of Tooth and Bone by Ada Hoffman  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueGigaNotoSaurus 02/01/16
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2 BASFF+1
The Universal Museum Of Sagacity by Robert Reed  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 116
(SF) In 2040, Colin gets more than he bargained for when he asks the AIs at tech giant PinPoint to track down information about a mysterious great aunt who vanished in 1965.
The Whole Mess by Jack Skillingstead  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 09|16
(Fantasy Math) A strange student give Professor Dunn a math problem whose solution will change the world. Literally.

Score: 2 → 1-2 Recommendations

Alien Stripper Boned From Behind By The T-Rex by Stix Hiscock  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueAlien Stripper Boned From Behind By The T-Rex 2016
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: Hugo+2
All Your Cities I Will Burn by John Schoffstall  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 265
(SF Apocalypse) The kilometer-wide asteroid didn't quite destroy civilization, but the things it brought with it just might finish it off.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 SFRevu+1
Alone, On The Wind by Karla Schmidt1  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 119
(Fantasy Science) Tuela's people fly among the remains of their shattered world, stealing water from a neighbor planet. Tuela presents an argument that things should change.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Angel, Monster, Man by Sam J. Miller  Time: 37m (Novelette)  IssueNightmare  40
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
Cold Comfort by Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty1  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueBridging Infinity 2016
(Climate Change) Maggie has a plan to reverse climate change by capturing methane up in the arctic and selling the carbon.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: GDozois+2
(Hard SF) At the height of diplomatic meetings, the toilets in the Station start to malfunction, even though diagnostics say nothing is wrong. So they call for an expert.
Discards by David D. Levine  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 03/30/16
(Superhero SF; Wild Cards) Tiago, a fifteen-year-old orphan boy scraping by on his own in Rio de Janeiro, contracts the "Wild Card" virus and ends up horribly disfigured. But the virus has given him a gift too.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2
Dreams Of The Rocket Men by C. Stuart Hardwick  Time: 24m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 09|16
(SF) Old Mr. Coanda fans Jimmy's love for outer space by showing him how to build and launch real rockets.
Empty Planets by Rahul Kanakia  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 262
(SF) In a future where most of the galaxy is run by "the Machine" for the benefit of those lucky enough to own shares, a young shareholder goes to school to learn how he can make a difference.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Epitome by Tegan Moore1  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 09|16
(SF AI) Shelby's friend Vivian faces a long recovery from a head injury, and she can't bear the loss of her company, so she starts using an AI surrogate.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+1
Fieldwork by Shariann Lewitt  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueTo Shape the Dark 2016
(Hard SF) Anna’s grandmother died on Europa, and her mother was traumatized for life, but she’s determined to go there and finish the work they started.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: GDozois+2
Head, Scales, Tongue, Tail by Leigh Bardugo  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueSummer Days and Summer Nights 
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: BASFF+2
Higherworks by Gregory Norman Bossert  Time: 37m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 12|16
(SF Thriller) Every since she leaked the secret of mind-expanding nanotech, Dyer has been on the run. And they're getting close.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: NClarke+2
Motherboard by Jeffrey Thomas  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 263
(Magical Realism) Teenage Leep works making circuit boards somewhere in the third world. He's so awkward and quiet that people think he's crazy, but he sees a very different world.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+1
Not Quite Taterona Kempi by Ryan W. Norris2  Time: 54m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 05|16
(Hard SF) Fifty million years after the extinction of humanity, a new intelligent race tries to understand records left on the moon.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2
Nothing But The Sky by Gwendolyn Clare  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 201
(Fantasy Steampunk) Ensign Dorial hoped for a chance to prove himself, but an assignment to track down the Emperor's wayward niece wasn't what he had in mind.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
Omoshango by Dayo Ntwari1  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 73
(Science Fantasy) A Nigerian program to develop people who can fly encounters opposition.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
Passion Summer by Nick Wolven  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 02|16
(near-future SF) At 14, Jeff can get his first "passion" treatment, which artificially makes you passionate about something or someone.
Polyglossia by Tamara Vardomskaya2  Time: 47m (Novelette)  IssueGiganotosaurus 03/01/16
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
(Alternate Reality) Old man Rendezvous tells outrageous stories about Jack Kennedy, and he's hunting an artifact in the drowned ruins of Cape Canaveral.
Project Entropy by Dominica Phetteplace  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 07|16
(Near-Future SF; Project Empathy) Angelina struggles with life now that she's lost her chip, and she's not sure how to get back on track
Project Extropy by Dominica Phetteplace  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 10.11|16
(Near-Future SF; Project Empathy) Akiko wakes up on a ship bound for San Francisco with no memory of who she is, but with the voice of "God" telling her what to do.
Seven Ways of Looking at the Sun-Worshippers of Yul-Katan by Maggie Clark  Time: 43m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 04|16
(SF) The narrator fled her world's brutal religion for a role with an interstellar science team. But a distress call puts her back on a collision course with it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
(Near-Future SF) Nico's boring life as an accountant changes when he meets an old friend who's involved with the illegal food scene in Kansas City.
The Bewilderness of Lions by Ted Kosmatka  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 03|16
(Hard SF) Caitlin does data mining for a presidential campaign, but her analysis is resulting in unusually precise and downright strange predictions.
The Book of How to Live by Rose Lemberg  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 209
(High Fantasy; Birdverse) In a world that values magic above all else, two creative women with no magic struggle to get recognition for their inventions.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
The Cavern of the Screaming Eyes by Jeremiah Tolbert  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 77
(Portal Fantasy; Dungeonspace) Teenage Ivan lost his brother in d-Space, but his new friend Domino is eager to explore a dungeon that's supposed to be safe.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+1
The Green Man Cometh by Rich Larson  Time: 42m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 120
(Post-Apocalypse) 22-year-old Eris flies a cab in the City. A stranger pays her to elude a follower, and she gets caught up in intrigue.
(Portal Fantasy) Consumed with guilt for being the sole survivor from her home dimension collapsed, Angel scrapes by in our world, living with a ghost, working as a janitor and doing limited magic on the sly.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
The Long Fall Up by William Ledbetter  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 05.06|16
(Hard SF) A woman in a space ship illegally tries to bring a baby to term in zero-g to prove it can be done, and the space station management sends an enforcer to stop her.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: Nebula+2
The Plague Givers by Kameron Hurley  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueUncanny 10
(Fantasy) Thirty years ago, Bet beat the best sorcerer in the world, but at such cost she's been in hiding ever since. Now the plague hunters need her help again, but something seems very wrong.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
The Vindicator by Matthew Hughes  Time: 45m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 11.12|16
(High Fantasy; Raffalon) As a thief, Raffalon has made a few enemies, but he didn't think anyone was mad enough to hire an assassin.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: SFRevu+2
Theories of Mind by Conor Powers-Smith  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 01.02|16
(Hard SF) Fresh from Earth, Peter finds himself assigned to an unpromising part of the colony planet, and he finds the natives even harder to talk with than he'd expected.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 SFRevu+1
Told By An Idiot by K.J. Parker  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 192
(Historical Fantasy) In Elizabethan London, an entrepreneur skilled in identifying legitimate antiquities ends up with a bottle that happens to have a demon in it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Toppers by Jason Sanford  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 08|16
(Post Apocalypse) Hanger lives in a canvas bag on the outside of the Empire State Building, but the secrets to survival are hidden in the deadly mist far below.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 SFRevu+1
We Will Wake Among the Gods, Among the Stars by Caroline M. Yoachim and Tina Connolly  Time: 43m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 01.02|16
(SF) Nanne accompanies a jungle expedition that seeks gold, but she secretly looks for a lost city with high technology.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+1
When The Stone Eagle Flies by Bill Johnson  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 06|16
(Time Travel; Martin & Artie) A group of lost time travelers tries to make the fall of Nineveh happen in a way consistent with the future they're trying to get back to.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: GDozois+2

Score: 1

A Dead Djinn In Cairo by P. Djeli Clark  Time: 41m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 05/18/16
(Historical Fantasy) In 1912 Cairo, the police investigate the apparent murder of an immortal Djinn.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: BASFF+1
A Deeper Green by Samantha Murray  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 205
(Fantasy) The colony can't tolerate assault, and it depends on Juvianna's gift of making people forget crime and motivation alike. But what if she used it preventively?
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Away From Home by Luo Longxiang  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 116
(Space Opera) Weihan survives the meteor strike that destroys his home, but it changes his life forever.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [1]  Recommended By: SFRevu+1
Balin by Chen Qiufan  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 115
(Slipstream) As a boy, Peng receives a paoxiao, a mythical humanoid creature with a great ability for mimicry. As a man, Peng tries to do research on the creature.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Black Orbit by Martin L. Shoemaker  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 12|16
(Hard SF) Cynthia had the evidence to send the crooked Initiative officers to prison, but how to get it from Jupiter back to Earth?
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [1]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
Carnivores of Can't-Go-Home by Constance Cooper  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueTo Shape the Dark 2016
(SF Mystery) A professor and her student investigating carnivorous plants on a colony world find the bones of a teenager inside one of the plants.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: GDozois+1
Cloud Dweller by E. Catherine Tobler  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueBCS 199
(Historical Fantasy) Vasily is a tightrope walker for the circus. When he thinks no one is around, he walks in thin air on lines of light only he can see.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Cookie Jar by Stephen King  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueVQR Online Spring 2016
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: BASFF+1
Finnegan's Field by Angela Slatter  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 01/13/16
(Fantasy/Horror) Three years ago, nine-year-old Madrigal Baker disappeared. Recently, she returned, and she's still nine. But her mom is sure something else is wrong.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
(Historical Fantasy) In 1879, little George and his big brother run away from their farm and sail down the river toward a new life in Pittsburgh
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Her Scales Shine Like Music by Rajnar Vajra  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 08/03/16
(Hard SF) Left behind on an alien planet while his shipmates return to Earth to secure their claim, Ross struggles to fill the time. Then strange things start to happen.
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In the Midst of Life by Nick Wolven  Time: 49m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 113
(SF) In a rude, career-ending memo to his boss, Doug recounts a disaster that occurred on a company property in Indonesia when they tried to evict a group of squatters and their charismatic leader.
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Matilda by Kristine Kathryn Rusch  Time: 30m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 04.05|16
(Military SF) The enemy are up to something in "blank" areas of space that sensors can't penetrate. Devi takes a "single ship" into one to find out what's there, but her ship has a mind of its own, and it's terrified.
More Heat Than Light by Charlotte Ashley2  Time: 25m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 05.06|16
(Historical Fantasy) Louis fights for the Republic of Quรฉbec against the British but the French Revolution is causing troubles on both sides of the Atlantic.
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Nesting Dolls by Jacob A. Boyd  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 09|16
(Generation Ship SF) Garen and his little brother live in the outer shell of the ship, but they have an unhealthy curiosity about the people who live inside.
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Of Wind and Fire by Vandana Singh  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueTo Shape the Dark 2016
(Scientific Fantasy) The villages falls slowly down the face of the mountain, trading with the people on the ledges as they go, but is there a bottom, or does it just go down forever?
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One Man's Dignity by Mark Niemann-Ross  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 11|16
(Solar System SF) Captain Jerwin has a space station to finish, but she finds time to worry about a crewman past retirement age who can't handle Earth gravity.
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Only Ten More Shopping Days Left Till Ragnarรถk by James Morrow  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueDrowned Worlds 2016
(Near-Future Fantasy) The narrator and his wife take a vacation to the North Pole, but after a tragic accident, they're enlisted in an effort to save the world.
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(Present-day SF; Stan) Stan's dad told the most outrageous stories, and claimed their family were weird because they were really aliens. In retirement, Stan believes it might even be true.
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Project Symmetry by Dominica Phetteplace  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 06|16
(Near-future SF; Project Empathy) Teenage Bel enjoys her prestigious career at Blue Cup, but she's alarmed to discover her employer has installed an AI in her head to keep tabs on her.
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Project Synergy by Dominica Phetteplace  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 04.05|16
(Near-future SF; Project Empathy) The Observator chip helps Angelina navigate her role as "social curator" (aka hostess) at the Reserve. She doesn't know that the chip wants to end their partnership.
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Revenge Of The Invisible Man by Robert R. Chase  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueAnalog 10|16
(SF Mystery) Angelo investigates the mystery of an invisible man who manages to attack victims despite his being confined to a cell.
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Sideways by Ray Cluley  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 266
(SF/Horror) Tom and Sam were supersonic test pilots in the 1950s before Sam died flying a plane that could go “sideways.”
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Starlings by Tyler Keevil  Time: 47m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 264
(Hard SF) The Phoenix project aims to send a group of enhanced children to another star before Earth becomes uninhabitable. Their mothers have a hard time letting them go.
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Telltale by Matthew Hughes  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 01.02|16
(High Fantasy; Raffalon) Raffalon the thief's latest contract goes wrong when he's transported to a gray world that he must figure out how to escape. Entertaining.
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The Briar and the Rose by Marjorie M. Liu  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueStarlit Wood 2016
(High Fantasy) The Duelist serves the cold, beautiful Carmela but loves Rose. Separating Rose from Caramela is going to be the challenge of her life.
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The Cat Bell by Esther M. Friesner  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 11.12|16
(Modern Fairy Tale) On a rich estate in 1890s upstate New York, the cook loves serving her famous boss, but hates feeding his cats.
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The Desert Of Vanished Dreams by Phyllis Eisenstein  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|16
(Fantasy/SF) Alaric the minstrel accompanies a caravan through the desert. When water runs short, they hazard a visit to a dangerous "city" from a forgotten past.
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The End of Hope Street by Malcolm Devlin  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueInterzone 266
(Slipstream) When a house becomes unlivable, everyone inside dies, and no one can ever go in it again. On Hope Street, one by one, the houses are becoming unlivable.
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The Farmboy by Albert E. Cowdrey  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 11.12|16
(SF) The crew exploring planet Omega-Alpha are dismayed to see their spaceship take off, leaving them marooned.
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The Ghost Penny Post by Marc Laidlaw  Time: 40m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 03.04|16
(Historical Fantasy) The Victorian England postal service sends Mr. Hewell to investigate some problems with the mail in Binderwood, where something very strange seems to be happening.
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The Jupiter Drop by Josh Malerman  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueYou, Human 
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
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The Language of the Silent by Juliette Wade and Sheila Finch  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 03.04|16
(Hard SF) En route to planet Enikiu, an accident ruptures Ifigenia's eardrums--a disaster for a translator. She can get them fixed on Earth, but first she explores Enikiu a little, with unexpected consequences.
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The Maiden Thief by Melissa Marr  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 01/27/16
(Dark Fantasy) Verena wants to stop the killer who takes one local girl every year. And she's just barely old enough to be a target herself.
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The Other Thea by Theodora Goss  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueStarlit Wood 2016
(Modern Fantasy) Thea graduated from witches school six months ago and should be at Harvard now, but the lack of her shadow, which she lost as a child, is depressing her, and if she can’t find it soon, she’ll fade away entirely.
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The Return of Black Murray by Alexander Jablokov  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 04.05|16
(Horror) Twenty-five years ago, at the end of the summer after high-school, something terrible happened to Cliff and his friends in the water ride at the local amusement park. Today they're going back there.
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The Snow Train by Ken Liu  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueGenius Loci 
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
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(Superhero SF; Wild Cards) In New York City, ugly mutants stay in Jokertown, but teenage Rikki and her friends want to do some exploring. It’s not exactly illegal, but it’s not exactly safe either.
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The War Of Heroes by Kameron Hurley  Time: 28m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 75
(SF) The "Heroes" are gradually destroying Yousra's world, but she finds a way to use a castrated prisoner to fight back.
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Vishnu Summer by David Prill  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 07.08|16
(Surreal) Audrey, a one-armed country girl, is fascinated by the murder trial of a talented three-armed man from the next county.
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1 comment (may contain spoilers):

  1. Continuing the short story notes, I'd add that, from my Tangent readings, I liked:

    8 "They Have All One Breath" by Karl Bunker
    2 "Cold Comfort" by Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty
    1 "Her Scales Shine Like Music" by Rajnar Vajra

    And from later partial Year's Bests readings:

    11 "The Art Of Space Travel" by Nina Allan
    6 "Fifty Shades Of Grays" by Steven Barnes
    3 "Extraction Request" by Rich Larson
    3 "Jonas And The Fox" by Rich Larson

    Again, while I liked "Art" it didn't hit me as an "11" sort of story whereas I thought "Her Scales" and others could be a bit higher and, especially, thought "Cold Comfort" was much more than a "2."

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