Latest Recommended Short Fiction(From "Distillations", Locus September 1997.)
Stephen Baxter, "Sun God" (Interzone 6/97) Baxter comes up with yet another way to look at variations of the space program, as a far future explorer tries to understand an ancient artefact found floating in space.
Mark Bourne, "Mustard Seed" (F&SF 8/97) A midwestern priest claims that the aliens who have come to Earth are not covered by Christ's salvation; then she meets one. A timely comparison to the film "Contact", which may be substantive by the standards of movie sci-fi but pales in comparison to the issues routinely tackled by prose SF such as this.
Eugene Byrne, "Thigmoo" (Interzone 6/97) Historical simulations in a university's computer rise up against their oppressors and threaten the world with electronic chaos.
Gwyneth Jones, "Balinese Dancer" (Asimov's 9/97) A British family's camping trip in France becomes a spooky reflection of a theory that human evolution is causing the difference between the sexes to erode.
Aimee Kratts, "Call Me Sue" (Asimov's 9/97) Madcap comedy with the flavor of Terry Bisson about a harried young woman who discovers that all time and space is collapsing into her kitchen.
Jonathan Lethem & Angus MacDonald, "The Edge of the Bed of Forever" (F&SF 8/97) Quirky tale that recombines common sf notions about time travel and infinite hotels into a useful device for cheating on your spouse.
Alastair Reynolds, "A Spy in Europa" (Interzone 6/97) Inventive, colorful adventure steeped in interplanetary politics as rival factions vie for control of Jovian space.
Walter Jon Williams, "Lethe" (Asimov's 9/97) Complex, insightful study of a future when people use nanotech to duplicate themselves, including their minds, and the psychological and emotional problems that can ensue. (Williams doesn't use the word "clones", but the cover does.)
Jane Yolen, "Fallen Angel" (Realms of Fantasy 6/97) Charming tale about an angel that falls to earth and is found by three children whose parents don't believe in heaven. Full of wonder and discovery, good-naturedly challenging the skeptical nature of the modern world.
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