Science Fiction & Fantasy

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Mar. 2017 (Issue 82)

We have original science fiction by Indrapramit Das (“The Worldless”) and Adam-Troy Castro (“Death Every Seventy-Two Minutes”), along with SF reprints by Rachel Swirsky (“The Debt of the Innocent”) and Julian Mortimer Smith (“Come-from-Aways”). Plus, we have original fantasy by Marta Randall (“The Stone Lover”) and Greg Kurzawa (“Soccer Fields and Frozen Lakes”), and fantasy reprints by Eileen Gunn (“Phantom Pain”) and Caitlín R. Kiernan (“La Peau Verte”). All that, and of course we also have our usual assortment of author spotlights, along with our book and media review columns, plus a feature interview with Nnedi Okorafor. For our ebook readers, we also have an ebook-exclusive reprint of Holly Phillips’ novella, “Proving the Rule,” and a book excerpt. Our cover this month is by Reiko Murakami, illustrating Indrapramit Das’s story, “The Worldless.”

In This Issue: Mar. 2017 (Issue 82)

Editorial

Editorial, March 2017

Be sure to check out the Editorial for a rundown of this month’s content and all our news and updates.

Science Fiction

The Worldless

Every day NuTay watched the starship from their shack, selling satshine and sweet chai to wayfarers on their way to the stars. NuTay and their kin Satlyt baked an endless supply of clay cups using dirt from the vast plain of the port. NuTay and Satlyt, like all the hawkers in the shanties that surrounded the dirt road, were dunyshar, worldless—cursed to a single brown horizon.

Author Spotlight

Fantasy

Phantom Pain

He was in the library. It was quiet. No guns. No mud. He could crawl in peace, as long as he didn’t make any noise. Mrs. Dientz, the librarian, wouldn’t allow noise. Ed was worried that he would get dirt in his wound, and it would get infected. The library is full of fungus, like a locker room: You can get athlete’s foot in places you would never put your feet.

Author Spotlight

Fantasy

The Debt of the Innocent

On October 11, 2035, Jamie Wrede, R.N., was the sole employee staffing the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Temperance United in Martinsville’s Pine Ridge district. In the course of her career, she’d been asked to kill nine newborns. That morning, she planned to kill four more. Jamie woke at 6:45 and began preparing breakfast for her eighteen-month-old daughter, Claire. At 7:34, she picked up a “crank call” and listened for three minutes.

Author Spotlight

Fantasy

The Stone Lover

When word came that the king had died, Kyros began packing his tools. Agathon had been a fine patron, commissioning statues and friezes for his capital’s many temples and his own palace, but his wife had no reputation for piety or art. He was surprised, then, when one of her pages delivered a scroll requesting his services.

Author Spotlight

Nonfiction

TV Review: March 2017

The role of the fictional detective is to strike at the unknown and restore order to the universe. Someone has stolen something or killed someone or otherwise gone outside the bounds of statutory, moral, or, in some cases, natural law, and it is up to the detective to resolve the tension of this trespass.

Science Fiction

Death Every Seventy-Two Minutes

Negelein is at his workstation working on the Lafferty file when the bone spear arcs over the sea of cubicles and strikes just above his right ear, penetrating his skull with a wet crunch. Oblivion is not quite instantaneous; his neurons all fire at the moment his brain goes soggy with blood, giving him, in his last instant, an overwhelming taste of peppermint.

Author Spotlight

Fantasy

La Peau Verte

In a dusty, antique-littered back room of the loft on St. Mark’s Place, a room with walls the color of ripe cranberries, Hannah stands naked in front of the towering mahogany-framed mirror and stares at herself. No—not her self any longer, but the new thing that the man and woman have made of her. Three long hours busy with their airbrushes and latex prosthetics.

Nonfiction

Book Reviews: March 2017

Amal El-Mohtar takes a look at Mishell Baker’s Phantom Pains and N.K. Jemisin’s The Obelisk Gate in an examination of powerful sequels.

Science Fiction

Come-from-Aways

Come-from-aways think it’s the tides that brings the wreckage in, but any local child will tell you the truth of the matter. You can have fifty fine days in a row and the beaches will be clean and empty, except for the usual haul of rockweed, driftwood, and old plastic bottles. Fifty fine days, and then there’ll come a thick, foggy night of the sort we do so well around here.

Fantasy

Soccer Fields and Frozen Lakes

Dear Sara: The official verdict that I am no longer classified as human arrived in a windowed envelope bearing the return address of the Bureau of Lineage Affairs. There is one envelope for me and one for you, although I haven’t opened yours. Except for the return address, these envelopes look like something from the bank, or perhaps an offer for home insurance, the kind we throw away.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight

Nonfiction

Interview: Nnedi Okorafor

Nnedi Okorafor, born to Igbo Nigerian parents in Cincinnati, Ohio, is an author of fantasy and science fiction for both adults and younger readers. Her Tor.com novella Binti won the 2015 Hugo and Nebula Awards; her children’s book Long Juju Man (Macmillan, 2009) won the 2007-08 Macmillan Writer’s Prize for Africa; and her adult novel Who Fears Death (DAW, 2010) was a Tiptree Honor Book.