Short Fiction Recs 2012 (Part 1)
Over on my personal blog I’ve started doing a thing where I post the short stories i read each month — the good ones, anyway. Since it’s now July and everyone is looking for something to read when it’s too hot to move, I thought you all might enjoy these selections as well.
As the year progresses you can keep up with the new things I add by subscribing to this Delicious Stack.
- Contact by Eileen Gunn I love stories where humans encounter aliens that are SO alien. This one is told from the alien’s POV and works really well.
- Winter Scheming by Brit Mandelo [TRIGGER WARNING: Domestic Violence.] What I like best about this story is that it starts out in an unexpected way given what’s really going on (which you understand at the end). Very well structured and executed.
- Immersion by Aliette de Bodard I had trouble with this one at first because one of the POVs was hard to grok, but I liked where the story went in the end.
- If The Mountain Comes by An Owomoyela Engaging meditation on scarcity and class.
- Mother of All Russiya by Melanie Rawn I’m not sure about this one. I liked he story in general, but I’m concerned about the characterization of Master Cheng. I’d be interested in discussing it with anyone who read or will read it.
- Tiger Stripes by Nghi Vo This story slowly builds up and worms into you.
- The Inconstant Moon by Alaya Dawn Johnson If you haven’t read Alaya’s novel “Moonshine” and you’re into vampires or the 1920s or supernatural-inflected historical fiction, go out and get it RIGHT NOW. It’s jazz vampires! If you’ve read “Moonshine” or the sequel “Wicked City” then you’ll like this story, too. It’s a prequel and tells the tale of how the novel’s protagonist, Zephir Hollis, first came to NYC.
- Daddy’s Girl by Amy Sundberg I love the main character of this story like burning. She’s is so damn fierce!
- Tomorrow’s Dictator by Rahul Kanakia As a person who spends much time going to conferences and networking, I find the setting of this story very funny. Great tale about mind manipulation (the consensual kind).
- Decomposition by Rachel Swirsky So, this is a zombie story. But in true Rachel Swirsky style, it’s not the kind of zombie story you’d expect.
- What Everyone Remembers by Rahul Kanakia A really touching post-apocalyptic story with all kinds of crunchy science and morality questions to work out.
- My Dignity in Scars by Cory Skerry This story snuck up on me. I wasn’t sure I’d like it at first, but the tone drew me in and the conflict eventually engaged me.
- Alarms by S. L. Gilbow I dig stories where characters make OCD lists about things. I also just like the way this one flows. The main character is very relate-able, even with the odd sfnal things going on.
- Her Words Like Hunting Vixens Spring by Brooke Bolander Revenge story! And it doesn’t pull punches in the end. I am a fan of that.
- The Chastisement of Your Peace by Tracy Canfield I’m a sucker for parallel world stories. I like how this one plays with the idea of the same person from multiple versions of the universe.
- Machine Washable by Keffy R.M. Kehrli (podcast) This is a short one, but oh so much fun. And read really well.
- The Rugged Track by Liz Argall (podcast)
This one made me smile because I know that Liz’s love of roller derby is the reason it exists. Even if you don’t love roller derby, this beautiful story about love and difficult choices and daughters and mothers will totally make you cry.
- An Early Adoption by Rahul Kanakia
- I really enjoyed the descriptions of the impossible, unreal things in the virtual world. I don’t know that I identify with the main character’s reaction to them, but then I’ve always wanted to live in a holodeck.
- The Second Card of the Major Arcana By Thoraiya Dyer
- Interesting interpretation of the Sphinx. I like the clash between ancient and modern and the unrelenting nature of the main character.
- Electric Rains by Kathleen Ann Goonan
- Due to the setting and a sort-of similar theme, this reminded me a lot of The Drowned Cities, except I like it a lot more. Dystopian, post-apocalyptic, very personal and close and sad.
- Mother Ship by Caroline M. Yoachim
- I’m not such a big fan of stories that offer resonance and not a real resolution, but the pull of the character in this one really grabbed me.
- Sunlight Society by Margaret Ronald
- Very interesting read, especially when juxtaposed with the new Avengers movie. It’s not actually about superheroes. Not really…
- My She by Mary Rosenblum
- Really liked this story when I read it in Federations. Quiet and affecting meditation on technology and humanity.
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