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The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-Eighth Annual Collection (The Year's Best Science Fiction #28)

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  375 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews

The thirty-three stories in this collection imaginatively take us far across the universe, into the very core of our beings, to the realm of the gods, and the moment just after now. Included here are works by masters of the form and by bright new talents, including: Nina Allan, Eleanor Arnason, Kage Baker, Ste
Paperback, 662 pages
Published July 2011 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2011)
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Jun 25, 2013 Gabriel rated it liked it
Years ago, I had a subscription to two magazines: Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine and Analog Science Fiction and Fact. For about four or five months I was able to keep up with reading the two. After that, I ended up reading only one or two more issues (of both magazines) and the rest of my subscription (two year's worth) lay unread for a long time. There was something that took me by surprise while reading them, though. After all, one was of a genre I greatly enjoyed and had been exploring l ...more
The stories and authors with their ratings are below:

A History of Terraforming by Robert Reed - 3 stars
The Spontaneous Knotting of an Agitated String by Lavie Tidhar - 4 stars
The Emperor of Mars by Allen M Steele - 5 stars
The Things by Peter Watts - interesting take from the "monster's" viewpoint, 4 stars
The Sultan of the Clouds by Geoffrey A Landis - 4 stars
The Books by Kage Baker - !! Books! 4.5 stars
Re-Crossing the Styx by by Ian MacLeod - 3.5 stars
And Ministers of Grace by Tad Williams - 5 s
Alison C
Mar 12, 2015 Alison C rated it it was amazing
I look forward every year to the publication of the long-running anthology series, The Year's Best Science Fiction, edited by Gardner Dozois; this year it's up to the 28th edition, and I'm pleased to note that it's still going strong. As always with such anthologies, different readers will prefer different stories, but no one can deny the quality of the work throughout. This crop includes short stories and novellas by Allen M. Steele, the late great Kage Baker, Eleanor Arnason, Joe Haldeman, Cor ...more
Apr 01, 2016 Roberts rated it really liked it
Another gem. My favorite stories were:

-- The Things by Peter Watts. "The Thing" (old movie about creature from outer space that takes over Antarctic science station), from a new perspective -- that of the alien itself, which sees the humans as 'the things'. Awesome.

-- And Ministers of Grace by Tad Williams. An enhanced assassin. Taut story, but so-so ending.

-- Jackie's Boy by Steven Popkes. I didn't think I was going to like this at first, but the story really grew on me, it became one of my fav
Rena Sherwood
Mar 12, 2016 Rena Sherwood rated it it was ok
Apparently 2010 was a really bad year in science fiction. You have to slog through about 500 utterly forgettable pages to find just over 100 pages worth reading. And the typos were incredible. How hard can it be to make sure the damn quotation marks are where they should be? Too hard, I guess.

I guess 2010 was the Year of the Elephant (as well as the Year of Kissing Ass to Previous Science Fiction Writers) because more than a few featured or at least mentioned elephants. The best selection here i
Oct 10, 2015 Kevin rated it it was amazing
By my rating, there were two 5-star stories, innovative, moving, significant. There were TWELVE 4-star stories, excellent in some way. Another eight were 3-star, competently made that delivered something worthwhile, often enjoyment. And unfortunately, eight were 2-star, with some worthy quality, but which I regretted reading.

5-stars are RARE and there were two, nearly three! Plus all the excellence and enjoyment. Lots of innovative science and literature. The curated commentary on who is who in
Mouldy Squid
Mar 29, 2012 Mouldy Squid rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: science fiction fans
Shelves: science-fiction
A strangely disappointing outing in this venerable series. While there is nothing in here that is terrible, or in anyway below Dozois' usually exacting standards, the Twenty-Eighth Annual Collection under-performs.

These annuals usually clock in at 500, 000 or so words, but #28 comes in significantly less. On the shelf, the volume is half of its neighbours, and this is with the new dimensions that St. Martins is printing their trades at. The size is a disappointment. I won't hazard a guess to wh
Jan 05, 2012 Dave rated it really liked it
If there's a theme that runs through this collection, it's that technologies for dramatic life extension, long a staple of science fiction, may only benefit a privileged few, and may not end up working as well as hoped. This topic is among those explored by the best two stories: Cory Doctorow's effervescent Chicken Little, and Alastair Reynolds's intriguing Sleepover.

Like Doctorow's earlier Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, Chicken Little delighted me with its wonderful characters, funny situat
Aug 10, 2015 Chris rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
If this was the best science fiction that 2010 had to offer I'd hate to see the worst.

There are some notable stories in this volume. "The Spontaneous Knotting of an Agitated String" is interesting, although the prose style Lavie Tidhar uses can be somewhat distracting. "Jackie's Boy" by Stephen Popkes was surprisingly good. Popkes pulls off a story that could easily have been a waste of reading time. "Flower, Mercy, Needle, Chain" by Yoon Ha Lee is one of the few experimental shorts that actuall
Apr 05, 2013 Anna rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was worse than what I'm used to from Dozois's collections. It had quite a few good short stories in it, but too many that were too long and most importantly too damn boring. I'm not sure if the latter part was better or if it just helped that the short stories were shorter, but it went a lot faster than the first half or so.

Can't really recommend this to anyone as a whole, unless you want to try out new writers in a shorter form than a novel. Or, uh, there were several that were new to me,
Dec 02, 2012 Alytha rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Complete list of stories:
Robert Reed: "A History of Terraforming"
Lavie Tidhar: "The Spontaneous Knotting of an Agitated String"
Allen M. Steele: "The Emperor of Mars"
Peter Watts: "The Things"
Geoffrey A. Landis: "The Sultan of the Clouds"
Kage Baker: "The Books"
Ian R. MacLeod: "Re-Crossing the Styx"
Tad Williams: "And Ministers of Grace"
Eleanor Arnason: "Mammoths of the Great Plains"
Joe Haldeman: "Sleeping Dogs"
Steven Popkes: "Jackie's Boy"
Nina Allan: "Flying in the Face of God"
Cory Doct
Feb 12, 2013 Paul rated it it was amazing
Let me start by saying that I don't like short story collections. I've always avoided them as a reader - to me a story cannot be done proper justice unless it is in novel format.

That said, I absolutely loved this anthology. True, there was a selection or two that were infuriating in their brevity and lack of conclusion. Lavie Tidhar's "The Spontaneous Knotting of an Agitated String" springs immediately to mind - though the language was mystical, the imagery beautiful, the story seemed to begin a
Rift Vegan
Feb 19, 2012 Rift Vegan rated it liked it
Hm. It's been a while since I've seriously read any scifi, and I am happy to get back to it. But this collection only had one story that I loved... "Jackie's Boy" about the elephants and going to The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. (But then TES is one of my favorite charities, so of course I'm going to love that story!) The price of the book was worth this one story, so I won't complain too much about the rest, most of which were in the okay range.

I've been wanting to get back to scifi... and
Jun 04, 2013 Michael rated it it was ok
Probably the weakest Year's Best yet. There were only two stories I particularly enjoyed; My Father's Singularity, by Brenda Cooper, and The Starship Mechanic, by Jay Lake and Ken Scholes. The rest were mediocre at best. I would have been more disappointed that this was also the shortest collection of the series if the stories were more absorbing, but finishing it actually came as a relief. Hope the next one's better.
Lord Humungus
Mar 31, 2013 Lord Humungus rated it it was ok
Overall, I didn't consider this a particularly strong collection. Some of my favorites were "A History Of Terraforming", "Jackie's Boy", "Mammoths Of The Great Plains", "Seven Years From Home", "Amaryllis", and "My Father's Singularity". Even my usual favorite authors, like Alastair Reynolds and Michael Swanwick, had entries that were good but not great. No stories were so amazing I can immediately recall them.

What I did really appreciate was the wide variety of material collected; I think it w
Chris Aldridge
Aug 29, 2015 Chris Aldridge rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 14, 2012 Richard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read this collection every year for maybe the last 10 years and this is in the middle of the pack for me. There are not any really must read short stories here but there are plenty of thought provoking ones. The two Robert Reed stories stand out for me one huge in scope and the second a tight small scale re-examination of one of the most familiar themes in Sci-Fi. But there were plenty of other rewarding stories as well and only a couple which I really could not relate to.

If I could only
John Devlin
Aug 11, 2011 John Devlin rated it liked it
Backstory: Dozois has come out w/this compilation of short stories for the last 28 years. As thick as a brick they are the sine qua non of sci-fi. I've read #'s 3, 8-28. Until last year this anthology has always deeply resonated w/me both in the science and sociality it depicts, but mostly in its stark and revealing commentary on what it means to be human. However, last years fell utterly flat, and while this year's is not a return to venerable form it still delivers enough good stories to insti ...more
Mohan Radhakrishnan
I like only hard science fiction. Not all were of equal interest.
Jan 31, 2014 Meryl rated it it was amazing
There were very few stories in this volume that I didn't appreciate in some way. Unfortunately the last novella by Reed was one of them, and I kept wondering why on earth it was in the collection. Still, some very powerful work in there.
Paul Brown
Jun 23, 2016 Paul Brown rated it it was amazing
I'm trying to read these at a rate of two per year to get caught up to present day. I bought this one five years ago, so I'm a bit behind. Each volume usually contains two or three really boring stories, but the good ones more than make up for it.
Jay Sprenkle
Jan 18, 2014 Jay Sprenkle rated it it was ok
A very spotty selection. A number of the stories were stream of consciousness descriptions of the horrid/odd/uninteresting life of some person I never came to care about. I like stories with plot. mystery, or at least an interesting world to learn about.
Nov 14, 2011 Paul rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
A few good stories but not a lot of great SF this year. There are just too many stories that do not capture my imagination, or are poorly written. Three good SF stories are: Elegy For A Young Elk by Hannu Rajaniemi, The Starship Mechanic by Jay Lake and Ken Scholes, and Sleepover by Alastair Reynolds. Wish I could give this a 4 but it doesn't quite make it.
Aug 22, 2011 Erik rated it it was ok
Tame, with too much professional paint-by-the-numbers stuff, like two, count them, Robert Reed novellas. High points for me: "Re-crossing the Styx" (predictable but good fun) and "Flower, Mercy, Needle, Chain" (unpredictable and good, but more like fantasy?). "Sleepover" had a good idea behind it, but the story read too much like the Matrix.
David Marshall
Oct 01, 2011 David Marshall rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although one or two of the longer stories are of uneven quality, the majority of these stories are of high quality and, at more than 700 pages, this is the best value-for-money anthology of the year so far.
Oct 22, 2011 Christopher rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, sf-2010
By hit/miss ratio, the worst of the four major "best of 2010" anthologies. Among the stories not found in another collection, none struck me as interesting. Read Strahan instead, IMO. A+: Watts. A: Rajaniemi. B+: Landis, Lee. B: Broderick, Tidhar ("The Night Train"), Reynolds, Cadigan.
Dec 21, 2011 Nick rated it really liked it
Cory Doctorow's story about an ad-man pitching analytics technology to the super rich is superb. If the Nobel committee were not genre snobs, they would be reading Dozois' annuals. This year is particularly strong. Seems like kind of a renissance in the short form is occuring.
Jack Hastings
Nov 18, 2011 Jack Hastings rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
Gardner Dozois consistently assembles a collection of high quality speculative fiction such that the occasional clinker can be forgiven. Also worth the read for his updates in all areas of SF publishing, and media (although he's a less forgiving critic than I).
Jul 01, 2015 Kain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As expected a variety of sci-fi stories each with a twist. I enjoyed most of the stories in this collection, a few I didn't really find interesting but in general this book is worth the read, especially if your a sci-fi lover.
Apr 08, 2013 Thomas rated it liked it
Particular favorites: Peter Watts, "The Things"; Steven Popkes, "Jackie's Boy"; Cory Doctorow, "Chicken Little"; Rachel Swirsky, "Again and Again and Again"; Ted Kosmatka, "In-fall"; Robert Reed, "Dead Man's Run"
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Gardner Raymond Dozois (born July 23, 1947) is an American science fiction author and editor. He was editor of Asimov's Science Fiction magazine from 1984 to 2004. He has won multiple Hugo and Nebula awards, both as an editor and a writer of short fiction.
Wikipedia entry: Gardner R. Dozois
More about Gardner R. Dozois...

Other Books in the Series

The Year's Best Science Fiction (1 - 10 of 33 books)
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: First Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Second Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Third Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Fourth Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Fifth Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Sixth Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Seventh Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Eighth Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Ninth Annual Collection
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction: Tenth Annual Collection

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