Another great collection from Ken Liu. Each story is well-written and intellectually engaging, but at his best Liu weaves together clear and shining language, deep emotional appeal, and that spark of new thought that makes us consider who and what we are. One such story in this collection is "Maxwell's Demon," a perfect reflection on loss and redemption, all anchored by a simple thought experiment from the 1800s.
A timely read for when we're all stuck inside with little to do other than check the news. This is a book on the importance of being present in your own life and not allowing attention merchants (i.e. most websites now) to parcel up and monetize your eyeball time. Keeping this book in mind really helps you not get trapped in your own head.
Have you ever wanted to know what happens when you enter the service of the Deathless Emperor, the Necrolord Prime? This book is a haunted house space fantasy (lots of descriptors I know, but it works) with space travel, necromancy, and an old creepy palace which seems fine until people start turning up dead. Heavy lifting worldbuilding for the first half (but still engaging), followed by an incredibly fast-paced release. For fans of skeletons, deathlessness, large swords, and banter.
A book that changed SF. Ursula at the height of her powers. She peaked in the '60s and then just stayed perfect for decades.
A human envoy is sent to make contact on a frozen planet where permanent gender does not exist. Perfectly realized and perfectly paced.
I picked this up because I couldn't resist the series title - The Murderbot Diaries. It promised campy SF action and fun, and that's what it delivers, but it also features the most human cyborg I've ever read about. Open this novella and read the first paragraph. You'll love it.
The first story in this collection is 7 pages long. Pick up this book, take it to the couch downstairs, and read that story.
Vivid, fast-paced, and bleak, it's a good example of James Tiptree Jr.'s work, the best stories of which are collected in this anthology.