Thursday, February 1, 2018

Annotated 2017 Locus Reading List for Short Fiction

Update 2/10/18: Added recommendations from RHorton's The Year's Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2018 Edition.
Update 2/7/18: Added links to all 5 Asimov's stories.

Here is the annotated 2017 Locus Recommended Reading List for short fiction, sorted by score to highlight the stories that made it into the "year's best" anthologies so far (GDozois, JStrahan, NClarke, RHorton) and "year's best" lists of prolific reviewers (GDozois, RHorton, RSR, SFRevu, JMcGregorCPayseur).

Annotations include time estimates, links to the story on the author’s website (if available), author links with Campbell Award-eligibility marked (superscript for year 1 or 2), blurbs for RSR-reviewed stories, links to reviews, and links to digital back issues (of print magazines) at eBookstores and library websites.


RSR reviewed 96 out of the 123 stories in the Locus list (78%). Of the 27 not reviewed by RSR, 10 were stories from horror magazines and horror anthologies. The rest were from other science fiction & fantasy sources, some of which might be reviewed by RSR as time permits.

Moreover, 74 of the 113 science fiction & fantasy stories in the Locus list (65%) are in RSR's Year-To-Date page. That means one can follow the Year-To-Date page over the course of the year and read stories that are likely to make it to the Locus list.

Shortcuts: Novellas (26), Novelettes (42), Short Stories (55)


Short Stories

The 55 short stories in the Locus list is largely a subset of the 118 stories (many with higher scores) in the RSR 2018 Hugo Awards page.

Score: 14 -> 8-9 Recommendations


Score: 13


Score: 12 -> 6-7 Recommendations


Score: 11

The Martian Obelisk by Linda Nagata  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueTor.com 07/19/17
(Apocalypse) As civilization is dying on Earth, a woman building a monument on Mars by remote control gets a message from a Mars colony long thought to be dead.

Score: 10 -> 5 Recommendations


Score: 9

An Evening with Severyn Grimes by Rich Larson  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 07.08|17
(SF Thriller) After terrorists spring her from cryo-prison, talented hacker Girasol goes into cyberspace to help them target the rich businessman who put her in prison in the first place.
(Space Opera) After its side won the space battle, an indentured robot with an uploaded intelligence finds an important refugee who makes a dangerous offer it can’t refuse.

Score: 8 -> 4-5 Recommendations


Score: 7

Carnival Nine by Caroline M. Yoachim  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 225
(Clockwork Fantasy) Zee lives with her father in a windup world. Bored with her life, she decides to visit the carnival.  She meets a boy, and things go from there.

Score: 6 -> 3-4 Recommendations

Sidewalks by Maureen F. McHugh  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueOmni 2017 Winter
(SF) Dr. Rosni Gupta examines Malni, a woman who’s institutionalized because she speaks gibberish. She’s sure it’s just another language, but what could it be?
Starlight Express by Michael Swanwick  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueF&SF 09.10|17
(SF) Far in the future, Flaminio meets the love of his life when a woman steps through a matter transmitter that hasn’t worked for centuries.
Though She Be But Little by C.S.E. Cooney  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 18
(Fantasy Horror) When the world changed and the sky turned silver, magic became real, Emma Anne became a little girl and her neighbor became a pirate. But can a little girl fight off an attack by the Loping Man?

Score: 5

Eminence by Karl Schroeder  Time: 21m (ShortStory)  IssueChasing Shadows 2017
(Near-Future SF) Nathan watches helplessly as the alternate currency he created collapses, taking down his friends and family with it.
Fandom for Robots by Vina Jie-Min Prasad1  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 18
(Alternate History Robot SF) Computron was the only intelligent robot built in the 1950s. Now all he does is answer questions from children and write fan-fiction about the robot in the Hyperdimension Warp Record TV show.
Probably Still the Chosen One by Kelly Barnhill  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 81
(Portal Fantasy) Corinna was eleven when her magical journey to the Land of Nibiru ended with her returning to her kitchen at home. Now she’s waiting for her friends to return for her. Probably.
The Heart's Cartography by Susan Jane Bigelow  Time: 16m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 84
(Time Travel) The time travelers across the road think they’re being clever, but Jade’s family spotted them right away. Even so, they’ve got a daughter her age, and she wants to make friends.
(SF Horror) Meant to clear plastic from the sea, the artificial “squids” have put the oceans off-limits to humanity. Not everyone takes that lying down.

Score: 4 -> 2-3 Recommendations

An Unexpected Boon by S.B. Divya  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueApex 102
(Modern Fantasy (India)) Little Kalyani might be autistic, but no one in her village knows what that means. A passing sage offers her a boon, but it’s not at all a cure.
Confessions of a Con Girl by Nick Wolven  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 11.12|17
(Dystopia) Sophie explains the events that led to her fall from grace—that is, how she accumulated enough “unlike” votes to be forced out of college.
Dear Sarah by Nancy Kress  Time: 14m (ShortStory)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) The new tech the aliens gave us created a golden age for some and abject poverty for others. MaryJo joins the army to get out, knowing she may end up fighting rebels who are friends or relatives.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 GDozois+2
The Faerie Tree by Kathleen Kayembe1  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 90
(Modern Fantasy Horror) Only Marianne can see that her new brother-in-law is a horror, and although she knows she can summon the faeries to get rid of him, she also knows the price will be very high.
The Worldless by Indrapramit Das  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 82
(Offworld SF) The Dunyshar are stranded on an outpost, but NuTay dreams of going home to Earth.

Score: 3

Love Engine Optimization by Matthew Kressel  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 85
(Near-Future SF)  Sam is a talented hacker who extracts Jane’s personal info in order to seduce her.
Queen of Dirt by Nisi Shawl  Time: 18m (ShortStory)  IssueApex 93
(Contemporary Fantasy; Brit Williams) Teenage Brit enjoys teaching little kids at a Seattle Experience Outreach camp, even though she senses that something evil haunts the abandoned bunkers up the hill.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 CPayseur+2

Score: 2 -> 1-2 Recommendations

Bodies Stacked Like Firewood by Sam J. Miller  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 14
(Mainstream) Cyd’s suicide brings his friend Kelvin to Albany for his memorial.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [0]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
I Have Been Drowned in Rain by Carrie Vaughn  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 223
(High Fantasy) Jared has almost brought the princess to safety, but he worries that Kat, the crazy women who accompanies them, might have betrayed them.
Mines by Eleanor Arnason  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) An ex-soldier on a colony planet who hunts for mines with a modified giant rat finds companionship in an injured soldier.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: GDozois+2
Nine-Tenths of the Law by Molly Tanzer  Time: 20m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 80
(SF) Donna’s cold and distant husband has an industrial accident the day she planned to leave him, so she stays to nurse him back to health. After that, he’s different—in ways she likes.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1 RHorton+1
One Hour, Every Seven Years by Alice Sola Kim  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueMcSweeney's 49
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Persephone of the Crows by Karen Joy Fowler  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueAsimov's 05.06|17
(Modern Fantasy) Ten-year-old Polly wishes she could see fairies like her friend Isabelle can. She wishes a lot of things. Not all wishes should come true.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Shoggoths in Traffic by Tobias S. Buckell  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 88
(Lovecraftian Horror) The narrator and his friend are racing towards Florida running away from the drug dealer they repossessed it from. But something worse is waiting in front of them.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Soccer Fields and Frozen Lakes by Greg Kurzawa  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 82
(Near-future SFF) After the government rules he isn't really human, Chris loses his human wife and hybrid kids.
The Siret Mask by Marie Brennan  Time: 18m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 238
(Fantasy Adventure) Viorica attempts to steal the famed Şiret Mask from Codruţ, brother of her dear friend. There are lots of complications, not least of which that Codruţ expects someone to try to take it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: JMcGregor+2
The Whalebone Parrot by Darcie Little Badger  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueThe Dark 10|17
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
(Apocalyptic) The narrator wants to spend the last hours before the asteroid strike with her parents, but she runs out of gas in the middle of South Dakota.

Score: 1

Conversations with an Armory by Garth Nix  Time: 09m (ShortStory)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) The Armory AI has been out of service for a long time, so when a group of wounded soldiers try to wake it up to assist in a battle plan, it takes a while to figure out what’s going on. Or whether to trust them.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
In Memory of Jianhong, Snake-Devil by Richard Parks  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 226
(Chinese Historical Fantasy; Pan Bao and Jing) Jing and her father climb a mountain to find and kill a Snake-Devil that has been killing people and goats, but she’s not exactly what they expected.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Octopus vs. Bear by Kendra Fortmeyer1  Time: 17m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 84
(Modern Fantasy) Unexpectedly, you woke up female this morning, in someone else's body. Now you have to decide what to do about it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
On the Road to the Hell of Hungry Ghosts by Richard Parks  Time: 24m (ShortStory)  IssueBCS 235
(Chinese Historical Fantasy; Pan Bao and Jing) Pan Bao, his daughter Jing, and their snake-devil friend, Mei Li, encounter a ghost who needs help. They usually expect to be paid for their sorcery, but the ghost is very persistent.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Paradox by Naomi Kritzer  Time: 05m (ShortStory)  IssueUncanny 16
(Time Travel) In which a chorus of time travelers give us advice, in the paradoxical way of time travelers.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Old Dispensation by Lavie Tidhar  Time: 22m (ShortStory)  IssueTor.com 02/08/17
(Space Opera) Shemesh returns from his mission on planet Kadesh to face inquisition by the Exiliarch. What really happened when he met the heretic there?
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: GDozois+1
(Space Opera) The Scholast fell to earth in the Low Waters Kingdom and called on them to prepare to defend themselves from an invasion from another world.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
The Shining Hills by Susan Palwick  Time: 12m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 87
(Urban Fantasy) Some nights shining lights appear atop hills in urban areas, and people who walk into them disappear—some say to fairyland. A cop who thinks otherwise tries to talk a young woman out of trying it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Ways Out by Sam J. Miller  Time: 19m (ShortStory)  IssueClarkesworld 129
(Mutants) A government agent secretly watches Ryx (age 10) and Hector (age 19) because they both have dangerous “variant” abilities.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: GDozois+1
The White-Throated Transmigrant by E. Lily Yu  Time: 11m (ShortStory)  IssueTor.com 06/21/17
(Dark Fantasy) Hiding from her own problems, Winona volunteers at the local ornithological museum after she hits a bird with her car.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
This Is Our Town by John Crowley  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueTotalitopia 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
(Near-Future SF) Jesse uses virtual reality to give tourists a vision-quest experience. It’s demeaning, but it pays the bills. Then a tourist turns up who wants a really authentic experience.

Score: 0

Fire. by Elizabeth Hand  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueFire. 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Graverobbing Negress Seeks Employment by Eden Royce  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueFiyah Spring 17
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Infinite Love Engine by Joseph Allen Hill  Time: 23m (ShortStory)  IssueLightspeed 83
(Science Fantasy) Aria just has a few days to save the whole universe from being swallowed up by Zarzak, the infinite love machine.
Run, Rabbit by Angela Slatter  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueMad Hatters and March Hares 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Say, She Toy by Chesya Burke  Time: 08m (ShortStory)  IssueApex 95
(Horror) Cloe is a black android built to let white people act out their aggressions.
The Crow Palace by Priya Sharma  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueBlack Feathers 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Fortune of Sparrows by Usman T. Malik  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueBlack Feathers 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Little Mermaid, In Passing by Angela Slatter  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueReview of Australian Fiction Volume 22 Issue 1
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Ouroboros Bakery by Octavia Cade  Time: 13m (ShortStory)  IssueKaleidotrope Autumn 17
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
These Deathless Bones by Cassandra Khaw  Time: 09m (ShortStory)  IssueTor.com 07/26/17
(Horror) The king’s only son is a rude and brutal child, and his new wife, a witch, hates him passionately.
Witch Hazel by Jeffrey Ford  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueHaunted Nights 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
With Graveyard Weeds and Wolfsbane Seeds by Seanan McGuire  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueHaunted Nights 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Worrity, Worrity by Andy Duncan  Time: 00m (ShortStory)  IssueMad Hatters and March Hares 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 


Novelettes

The 42 novelettes in the Locus list is largely a subset of the 88 stories (many with higher scores) in the RSR 2018 Hugo Awards page.

Score: 14 -> 8-9 Recommendations


Score: 13

A Series of Steaks by Vina Jie-Min Prasad1  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 124
(Chinese SF) A blackmailer forces Helena to make entire fake steaks for him or else he’ll tell the authorities about her business printing fake beef for shady restaurants. She’s never tried to make a whole steak though.

Score: 12 -> 6-7 Recommendations


Score: 11


Score: 10 -> 5 Recommendations

The Secret Life of Bots by Suzanne Palmer  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 132
(SF Adventure) The ship hadn’t activated Bot 9 in a long time—it’s an unstable model—but in a desperate situation it needs all its resources. And how much trouble can it get into hunting down a rat?

Score: 9


Score: 8 -> 4-5 Recommendations


Score: 7

Extracurricular Activities by Yoon Ha Lee  Time: 47m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 02/15/17
(Space Opera; Machineries of Empire) A Heptarchate undercover mission lead by one of Jedao’s friends has gone missing, so Jedao goes undercover to try and rescue them.
My English Name by R.S. Benedict1  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 05.06|17
(Horror) The narrator is an alien who takes human form, but periodically has to change it. This is a problem if it falls in love with someone.
Uncanny Valley by Greg Egan  Time: 44m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 08/09/17
(Near-Future SF) Adam has 70% of the memories of the man who created him, but something vital is hiding in that missing 30%.

Score: 6 -> 3-4 Recommendations

(Dystopia) In a near-future ruled by conservatives, an organization called “Love and Dignity for Everyone,” kidnaps Rachael in order to “fix” her. But she doesn’t want to be “fixed.”
Remote Presence by Susan Palwick  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueLightspeed 83
(Modern Fantasy) Chaplin Win is in trouble for letting an unauthorized ghost talk with hospital patients, and inspectors are coming tomorrow.
ZeroS by Peter Watts  Time: 45m (Novelette)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) Technically dead after a terrorist attack, Asante gets a new body and second chance at life, provided he serves 5 years as an experimental supersoldier.

Score: 5

Crispin's Model by Max Gladstone  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 10/04/17
(Eldritch  Horror) Delilah makes some money modeling, and Crispin offers twice what anyone else does. He never lets her look at the works in progress, though. He has his reasons.
The Chameleon's Gloves by Yoon Ha Lee  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueCosmic Powers 2017
(Space Opera; Machineries of Empire) Rhehan used to be a Kel supersoldier before being kicked out. Now the Kel needs Rhehan for a dangerous mission—offering the only coin Rhehan might consider.
The Hermit of Houston by Samuel R. Delany  Time: 40m (Novelette)  IssueF&SF 09.10|17
(SF Epic) The narrator describes his life in a very different North America, where everyone is male.
Wind Will Rove by Sarah Pinsker  Time: 48m (Novelette)  IssueAsimov's 09.10|17
(Generation Ship) The ship lost most of its historical records some years back, and the narrator tries to use music to maintain a connection with distant Earth.

Score: 4 -> 2-3 Recommendations

Come See the Living Dryad by Theodora Goss  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 03/08/17
(Mainstream) In 1888 a woman suffering a hideous deformity was murdered in London. Today, her descendent wants to find the culprit.
Concessions by Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali2  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueStrange Horizons 03/06/17
(Near-Future SFF) Bilqis,  the only real doctor in a dying community of religious exiles, finds something strange when she examines a pregnant woman.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 JStrahan+2
Night Passage by Alastair Reynolds  Time: 47m (Novelette)  IssueInfinite Stars 2017
(SF Adventure) Captain Bernsdottir wakes from hibernation with her ship stalled next to a vast alien artifact and a mutiny in progress.
Pan-Humanism: Hope and Pragmatics by Jess Barber and Sara Saab  Time: 40m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 132
(Climate SF) This story follows Amir and Mani’s careers starting when they’re teenagers in water-starved Beirut.
(Dystopia) Dan loses his job and goes looking for something that hasn’t already been automated away. There’s not much, and what he does find is rather strange.
The Mocking Tower by Daniel Abraham  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Fantasy Adventure) Somewhere near the every-changing Mocking Tower the Imagi Vert has hidden a sword that holds the soul of the late emperor, and a thief has come to try to steal it.
The Moon is Not a Battlefield by Indrapramit Das  Time: 27m (Novelette)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) After spending almost her whole life as a lunar soldier, Gita gives an interview to a reporter about what it was like and how she’s adapting to life in India.
The Smoke of Gold is Glory by Scott Lynch  Time: 56m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Fantasy Adventure) Tarkaster Crale, a young thief down on his luck, meets up with friends who want to assault the Anvil, the mountain where the last dragon hid its hoard—and from which it dares people to try to take it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 JStrahan+2
(Historical Fantasy) A young apprentice at making magic gloves considers breaking the rules to make a special pair to control his sister’s epilepsy.
We Who Live in the Heart by Kelly Robson  Time: 49m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 128
(Colony SF) People who don’t like living underground in the colony can live inside giant “whales” that float high in the planet’s atmosphere. That’s usually pretty safe.

Score: 3

A Human Stain by Kelly Robson  Time: 32m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 01/04/17
(Horror) Helen comes to Meersee in Germany to be a governess for her friend’s nephew. The child is young and peculiar, the staff are old and peculiar, and more peculiar things turn up by the minute.
A Temporary Embarrassment in Spacetime by Charlie Jane Anders  Time: 35m (Novelette)  IssueCosmic Powers 2017
(Space Opera Humor) Sharon and Kango have to go back to their home worlds to capture an ultimate weapon that threatens the galaxy, or else they’ll never achieve their dream of opening a restaurant.
Weather Girl by E.J. Swift  Time: 26m (Novelette)  IssueInfinity Wars 2017
(Military SF) Lia’s top-secret work uses hurricanes against America’s enemies by falsifying the weather and satellite records to fool enemies into thinking no storm is coming.
(Alternate History Fantasy; Dominion of the Fallen) Two people from a secret, underwater House try to infiltrate a troublesome surface House that rules much of a Paris still recovering from long-ago magical wars.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2
Neptune's Trident by Nina Allan  Time: 46m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 129
(Post-Apocalypse) The world is gradually being destroyed by what seems like an alien plague that attacks people and software alike. Caitlin lives in a seaside Scottish town, nursing her dying lover.
Rain Ship by Chi Hui  Time: 47m (Novelette)  IssueClarkesworld 125
(Post-Human) Jin is a mercenary hired to protect archeologists investigating an ancient ship built by the extinct human race.

Score: 2 -> 1-2 Recommendations

Sweetlings by Lucy Taylor  Time: 29m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 05/03/17
(Climate Apocalypse Horror) As the seas have risen, terrible things have come crawling out of them. Jersey wants Mir to come with him and move inland, but she won’t go without her disabled father.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: JMcGregor+2
(Horror) ‘Nisha only has five hours to get across New York to her dead aunt’s apartment before the city comes to throw away all her stuff. She’s not even sure it’s worth it, but they said her aunt was a witch…
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [2]  Recommended By: JStrahan+2
The Thule Stowaway by Maria Dahvana Headley  Time: 38m (Novelette)  IssueUncanny 14
(Fantasy Horror) Edgar Allan Poe’s writing has brought a creature into this world and it inhabits a young woman who wants to be rid of it. It has its own agenda.
Waiting on a Bright Moon by JY Yang  Time: 33m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 07/12/17
(Space Opera) Xin’s orderly life on Eighth Colony changes forever when she ushers a mutilated body through the portal.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [1]  Recommended By: CPayseur+2
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: CPayseur+2

Score: 1

Angel of the Blockade by Alex Wells  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueTor.com 09/06/17
(SF Adventure) Nata’s one of the best smugglers, in space and because of the war, she’s in great demand. This latest deal, though, pays so well for so little work there’s got to be something fishy about it.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
I am a Handsome Man, Said Apollo Crow by Kate Elliott  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Historical Fantasy Adventure) Apollo Crow takes an assignment from the Emperor to steal the sketchbook of a woman whose speeches are fomenting rebellion.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Colgrid Conundrum by Rich Larson  Time: 39m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Fantasy Adventure) Crane and Gilchrist arrive in filthy industrial Colgrid with a box that needs an expert to open. An expert who may demand payment in some other form than cash.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
The Hidden Girl by Ken Liu  Time: 31m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Chinese Fantasy Adventure) She was only ten when they kidnapped her to train as an assassin, but now she’s sixteen and she needs to prove herself.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Waterfalling by Lavie Tidhar  Time: 36m (Novelette)  IssueThe Book of Swords 2017
(Fantasy Adventure; Gorel of Gloris) Searching for his lost homeland, addicted to a drug excreted by gods, and suffering withdrawal, Gorel gets an invitation to an adventure—to kill a god.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+1

Score: 0

Better You Believe by Carole Johnstone  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueHorror Library Volume 6 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Mercury by Priya Sharma  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueMad Hatters and March Hares 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Mathematical Inevitability of Corvids by Seanan McGuire  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueBlack Feathers 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Resident by Carmen Maria Machado  Time: 00m (Novelette)  IssueHer Body and Other Parties 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 


Novellas

The scores here are low because the “year’s best” anthologies have room for few novellas (sometimes none). For more recommended novellas, especially from magazines, see the 2018 Hugo Awards page.

Score: 14 -> 8-9 Recommendations


Score: 13


Score: 12 -> 6-7 Recommendations


Score: 11


Score: 10 -> 5 Recommendations


Score: 9


Score: 8 -> 4-5 Recommendations


Score: 7


Score: 6 -> 3-4 Recommendations

And Then There Were (N-One) by Sarah Pinsker  Time: 1h:03m (Novella)  IssueUncanny 15
(SF Mystery) The inventor of trans-multiverse travel invites hundreds of instances of herself to a conference. It’s great fun until one gets murdered.

Score: 5


Score: 4 -> 2-3 Recommendations

All Systems Red by Martha Wells  Time: 1h:43m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 05/02/17
(SF Thriller; Murderbot Diaries) A “security bot” assigned to support a survey team impresses them with its competence as a series of things go wrong. What they don’t know is that it has disabled the governor that prevents it from hurting people.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 RHorton+2
The Proving Ground by Alec Nevala-Lee  Time: 58m (Novella)  IssueAnalog 01.02|17
(Hard SF) Haley hopes the "colony" on Bikini island will let her people survive sea-level rise, but a problem with local birds presents an unexpected threat.

Score: 3

In Calabria by Peter S. Beagle  Time: 1h:46m (Novella)  IssueIn Calabria 2017
(Modern Fantasy) Claudio tends his farm alone down at the tip of the Italian peninsula until a young woman and a pregnant unicorn disturb his tranquility.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [5]  Recommended By: RSR+2 RHorton+1

Score: 2 -> 1-2 Recommendations

Acadie by Dave Hutchinson  Time: 1h:07m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 09/05/17
(SF Adventure) Even after 500 years, Earth is still after the founders of the Colony, so when a probe wanders into their system Duke has to find a way to get everyone to safety.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [3]  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Fallow by Sofia Samatar  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueTender 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+2
Prime Meridian by Silvia Moreno-Garcia  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssuePrime Meridian 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+2

Score: 1

(Portal Fantasy; Wayward Children) Twin sisters, Jack and Jill, escape from overbearing parents into The Moors, a fantasy land where werewolves and vampires are real.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
In Search of Lost Time by Karen Heuler  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueIn Search of Lost Time 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones  Time: 1h:15m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 06/20/17
(Horror) At 12, Junior thinks his dead father has returned to protect his family. There’s a lot Junior doesn’t know about his father—living or dead.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
Mightier than the Sword by K.J. Parker  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueMightier than the Sword 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Adventure of the Incognita Countess by Cynthia Ward  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueThe Adventure of the Incognita Countess 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Black Tides of Heaven by JY Yang  Time: 2h:13m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 09/26/17
(Epic Fantasy; Tensorate) The Protector’s twin children threaten her absolute rule. Their magic is almost as strong as hers, and they pursue technology as well.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1
The Border State by Christopher Rowe  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueTelling the Map 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Martian Job by Jaine Fenn  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueThe Martian Job 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review []  Recommended By: RHorton+1
The Twilight Pariah by Jeffrey Ford  Time: 1h:50m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 09/13/17
(Horror) College friends Henry, Maggie, and Russell decide to play archeologist in the back yard of an old, abandoned house, but things get serious when they find the deformed skeleton of a child.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [4]  Recommended By: RSR+1

Score: 0

A Song For Quiet by Cassandra Khaw  Time: 59m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 08/29/17
(Horror; Persons Non Grata) Deacon James plays the blues, but on a train ride a new melody gets into his head. Something powerful enough to change people’s lives—or end them.
Agents of Dreamland by Caitlin R. Kiernan  Time: 1h:17m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 02/28/17
(SF Horror; Agents of Dreamland) Signalman investigates the origins of a mysterious fungus that killed some cultists in California.
Binti: Home by Nnedi Okorafor  Time: 1h:51m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 01/31/17
(Space Opera; Binti) After a year at college offworld, Binti comes back to Africa for a visit. Her relatives aren’t pleased with how she’s changed nor with the violent alien friend she brings with her.
Lost in the Dark by John Langan  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueHaunted Nights 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
Passing Strange by Ellen Klages  Time: 2h:08m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 01/24/17
(Historical Fantasy Romance) In San Francisco in 2015, an old Japanese woman spends her last days dealing with mysterious unfinished business involving the 1940 disappearance of a friend who illustrated pulp magazines.
Proof of Concept by Gwyneth Jones  Time: 1h:33m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 04/11/17
(Dystopia) A few centuries from now, on a dying Earth, Kir joins a team trying to build an interstellar teleportation device. Unfortunately, to get funding they have to incorporate the crew from a reality show.
River of Teeth by Sarah Gailey  Time: 1h:53m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 05/23/17
(Alternate History) Winslow Houndstooth takes a federal commission to clear feral hippopotamuses from the Mississippi valley, but he has another target in mind.
(Near-Future Fantasy) In the dried-out ruins of an Iowa town, anarchists cope with a demon deer they summoned to protect themselves from “predators” but which seems to have its own definition of the word.
The Process (is a Process All Its Own) by Peter Straub  Time: 00m (Novella)  IssueThe Process (is a Process All Its Own) 2017
Not reviewed by Rocket Stack Rank.
Other Reviews  RSR Mini-Review [] 
The Red Threads of Fortune by JY Yang  Time: 2h:04m (Novella)  IssueTor Novella 09/27/17
(Fantasy Adventure; Tensorate) Mokoya and her brother use their powerful magic to defend Bataanar from external attack which her mysterious new love interest may be involved with.


2 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. You have a couple short stories listed twice:

    One Hour, Every Seven Years
    This Is Our Town

    Looks like they moved up with points from RHorton, but still show under 0 as well.

    ReplyDelete