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The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2012 (The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy)

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3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  130 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
From the publisher's web site: This fourth volume of the year's best science fiction and fantasy features thirty stories by some of the genre's greatest authors, including Jonathan Carroll, Neil Gaiman, Kij Johnson, Kelly Link, Paul McAuley, RJ Parker, Robert Reed, Rachel Swirsky, Catherynne M. Valente, and many others. Selecting the best fiction from Asimov's, F&SF, ...more
Paperback, 544 pages
Published July 4th 2012 by Prime Books (first published July 2nd 2012)
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(showing 1-30)
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Amy
Nov 26, 2012 Amy rated it liked it
The stories I really liked were:

"The Sighted Watchmaker" by Vylar Kaftan
"The Choice" by Paul McAuley
"Windows in the World" by Gavin J. Grant
"The Summer People" by Kelly Link
"Mulberry Boys" by Margo Lanagan
"Woman Leaves Room" by Robert Reed
"The Last Sophia" by C.S.E. Cooney
"The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees" by E. Lily Yu
and of course" The Man Who Bridged the Mist" by Kij Johnson

So 9 stories out of 29. All in all, interesting to see what was out there from the previous year.
Jacob
Jun 26, 2013 Jacob rated it really liked it
Some stories were better than others, but overall, it's a solid read. I only skipped one: The Last Sophia, by C.S.E Cooney. It was from the perspective of a woman who was in & out of reality, but the attempt to create that narratively was just confusing.

The best of the bunch, in my opinion: "The Man who Bridged the Mist" by Kij Johnson, "Fields of Gold" by Rachel Swirsky, "The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees" by E. Lily Yu, and "The Adakian Eagle" by Bradley Denton.
Llewellyn
Jun 30, 2013 Llewellyn rated it liked it
Some of these stories were great, some were downright awful, and some were pretty mediocre. I thought the best of the bunch were:

The Adakian Eagle
The Girl Who Ruled Fairyland
Late Bloomer*
Rampion
Younger Women
Canterbury Hollow
The Summer People
Mulberry Boys*
The Silver Wind
A Small Price to Pay for Birdsong
Woman Leaves Room
My Chivalric Fiasco
The Last Sophia
The Man who Bridged the Mist

*Late Bloomer was my favorite, followed by The Mulberry Boys
Richard
Oct 09, 2012 Richard rated it liked it
Two stories really stand out to me. The rest wasn't that special. And then there were quite a few which seemed totally out of place in a SF&F collection where the fantasy is reduced to the supernatural set into our regular world.

Some gems: The Sandal-Bride, The Sighted Watchmaker, The Choice, The Man Who Bridged the Mist.

The rest I thought were just alright or less than average.
Samantha
Apr 08, 2013 Samantha rated it liked it
Some really great stories here, some not so much. Without being negative and naming the poorer stories (some from inexperienced authors who just haven't found their voice yet) here are the highlights:
Late Bloomer
Neil Gaiman
The adaskian Eagle
Birdsong
Fields of Gold
Amy
Jul 30, 2013 Amy rated it liked it
I skimmed a few of these, and wasn't caught up. I got this for Valente's Fairyland 0.5 story, and read Neil Gaiman's story as well. Those were great. But all in all it didn't engage me like some other anthologies.
Dan
Aug 27, 2012 Dan rated it really liked it
By and large well-curated. Some standouts are sub-par, one or two very sub-par, but this may have been a bad year for speculative fiction. Nonetheless I would encourage the editor to seriously consider whether stories about hipsters meeting vampires truthfully belong in any serious anthology.
Chris Kasten
Nov 22, 2012 Chris Kasten rated it it was ok
Odd mix of stories and styles. I didn't love the majority of them, but yet there were a few that were really great and a couple more that were enjoyable. There were also a bunch that I couldn't even finish.
Jennles
May 05, 2014 Jennles rated it it was ok
I loved "The Adakian Eagle", "The Sandal Bride" and "Martian Heart" but most of the other stories bored me to tears after the first page or so. Kind of disappointing. I love short stories but collections are usually a disappointment - will probably just stick to the magazines from now on.
Richelle
Aug 08, 2013 Richelle rated it it was ok
Surprisingly disappointing. Some of the stories weren't very sci-fi/fantasyish at all. There were a few good stories, but mostly by already established authors I already knew about.
Jennifer Turner
May 29, 2014 Jennifer Turner rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I love short stories, especially science fiction. This one was awesome, I'd recommend this to everyone who enjoys sci-fi and fantasy.
Dawn Barnhart
Feb 11, 2013 Dawn Barnhart rated it liked it
4a best of the year book it left things to be desired there was some good stories but I wouldn't think anything works great
Wendy
Not sure if it's my poor attention span and distraction causing me issues (read: yeah, it probably is), but I just couldn't get into many of these short stories at all.
Trish
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Other Books in the Series

The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy (8 books)
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2009
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2010
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2011 Edition
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2013
  • The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy, 2014
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