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The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination: Original Short Fiction for the Modern Evil Genius

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  1,523 ratings  ·  287 reviews
From Victor Frankenstein to Lex Luthor, from Dr. Moreau to Dr. Doom, readers have long been fascinated by insane plans for world domination and the madmen who devise them. Typically, we see these villains through the eyes of good guys. This anthology, however, explores the world of mad scientists and evil geniuses—from their own wonderfully twisted point of view.

An all-sta
Paperback, 368 pages
Published February 19th 2013 by Tor Books
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3.64  · 
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Dec 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories, sci-fi
I don't really like short story compilations. I'd rather have 800 pages than 80. BUT this was a VERY cool anthology of short stories by fantastic authors about Mad Scientists. Some were artistic, some were Dr. Horrible-esque, and all were very very enjoyable! Definitely recommend to turn your head around on the bad guy we see in all our genre faves!
May 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
This anthology contained 22 short stories. As with most anthologies the quality varied wildly. I was initially drawn to this anthology because it sounded like a fun premise and it contained short stories from Austin Grossman and Theadora Goss. In the end I was shocked that I liked many of the other short stories better than the ones that caught my eye. Grossman's opening story was actually a bit of a flop. The Goss story fared better, but was only enjoyable rather than anything memorable.

My fav
Jul 25, 2015 rated it really liked it

Professor Incognito Apologizes: an Itemized List by Austin Grossman
Instead of a Loving Heart by Jeremiah Tolbert
Rural Singularity by Alan Dean Foster
Harry and Marlowe Meet the Founder of the Aetherian Revolution by Carrie Vaughn
Rocks Fall by Naomi Novik
Mofongo Knows by Grady Hendrix

Vaughn's and Tolbert's seemed like parts of larger stories that I'd be interested in reading.

A few other stories that I liked less but found noteworthy:

"The Mad Scientist's Daughter" by Theodora Goss.
Jun 21, 2015 rated it liked it
I generally like to review each story, but so far they've all been short, appropriately humorous, & quite good (3-3.5 stars, at least). Each are preceded by a short blurb which has been very good, too. Just enough to set the stage, never a spoiler. A few stories were exceptional or stinkers. Comments after those.

From the editor's web site:
The following stories can be found in The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination.

Foreword by Chris Claremont - s
Tim Hicks
Sep 16, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This just barely made three stars.

Mostly, I am remembering Diana Gabaldon's long story/novella which is set in her Outlander world. Many here bought the book just for that. Maybe for them it was good. For me it was a complex story that ended with a giant Pfffft! Big, long buildup, and thud, it's over with nothing resolved. I suspect many who aren't into the Outlander series found this story disappointing. And it's full of unnecessary Scottish dialect -which I am quite familiar with, it just was
Stuti (Turmeric isn't your friend. It will fly your ship
An anthology on supervillain stories, The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination is, at once, both darkly humorous and perceptive. The stories range far and wide; while the mad scientists are the focus, they don't always tell the story but nevertheless, we see them in lights, contexts and situations unheard of and unseen before. In all, the stories are unique and creative even though, some of them have structural frames rather similar to that of tales of superheros.

There's a gradual change i
Most of the authors in this anthology took their cue from the odd title and wrote humorous stories, though a couple tried for a more serious approach. On the whole, I preferred the funny ones:

"Professor Incognito Apologizes: An Itemized List" by Austin Grossman —
I enjoyed this story. It made me laugh. The itemized list is quite funny in itself, mixing the profound with the trivial, and it's all comically phrased. It actually did make me chuckle, repeatedly. Grossman has a nice talent for the cle
Are you a Villain Sympathizer!? Do you have delusions of grandeur? Stay up late night plotting a world takeover? Or perhaps find yourself with an insane cackle or a desire to create weapons of mass destruction!? You do!!? Well then The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination is EXACTLY the short fiction collection for you! Villains can make or break a book for me, and I think if I could picture myself in a story, I would so be a villain. They have the best toys, and the in my mind some outrage ...more
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was ok
The editor of this anthology has the annoying habit of spoiling or summarizing each story in the introduction to that story. I prefer to find out for myself what a story is about.

I wanted to like this anthology. It is an intriguing premise, and I have a soft spot for mad scientists. But there was only one story that I liked in the entire anthology; Rocks Fall by Naomi Novik. It is a clever, poignant little story. The rest of the anthology I found forgettable. I didn't even finish some stories (a
Mar 08, 2013 rated it it was ok
Three stars minus one star for the horrible Outlander novella.
Nov 04, 2013 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone

For my Halloween-themed read this year, I picked up this little anthology: The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination. It’s my own fault that it took nearly the entire month of October to read it.

This is a collection of 22 tales involving science, madness (broadly defined, here) and a healthy dose of megalomania (a madness that is de rigueur for our protagonists). Only three have been previously published, so there is little chance that you will run across lots of “old chestnuts” (well not fo
Adrian Fridge
Feb 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
This is a set of very diverse stories, so much so that by sheer law of probability there must be something in here for you. There's sci-fi, fantasy, action adventure, thriller, horror, dystopia, historical, steampunk, and even one (maybe) case of contemporary. Science is magic, magic is science. Good intentions gone wrong, bad intentions gone wronger. I'll point to some of the gems I discovered.

I'll pique your interest with the more creative reimaginings:
- In "Laughter at the Academy" by Seanan
Feb 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Check out Books Are My Drug for other reviews.

My review copy was an eARC provided for free by Tor through Netgalley.

Reviewing short story collections is tough. No matter how much work the collector put into it, there’s always going to be one or two that you don’t think work. I can’t give a rundown review of all of them, so what I am going to do is discuss a few I thought were good, a few I thought… weren’t, and then talk about how well the collection works together.

The first story (Professor Inc
Kathy Davie
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: funny, horror, sci-fi
A very funny selection of 22 short stories revolving around the mad scientist, his assistant, and/or descendants.

“The Space Between” (Outlander, 7.5)

The Stories
Austin Grossman’s “Professor Incognito Apologizes: An Itemized List” is too funny for words in its bullet point apology combination of mad scientist AND boyfriend of all that Professor Incognito needs to explain to his girlfriend. Ah gots ta put Grossman on my TBR list.

Harry Turtledove’s “Father of the Groom” plays off the bridez
Feb 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Sunil by: Seanan McGuire
Shelves: own, 2013
With The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination, acclaimed anthologist John Joseph Adams has put together a (mostly) excellent set of 22 stories about the world of mad science and the people who practice it without fear of consequences, frequently in the name of, well, world domination. Mad scientists pop up fairly frequently in comic books, movies, and television shows, but they don't seem to be explored as much in fiction. We have the classics, like Doctors Jekyll, Frankenstein, and Moreau, ...more
Benjamin Thomas
May 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Twenty-two tales make up this anthology of the lives of Mad Scientists as they embark on attempts to dominate our world. They include the diabolical, the weird, the accidental, the peevish, as well as the good, the bad, and the downright ugly. You will not find the “typical” mad scientist within these pages for all of the stories herein are told by speculative fiction authors who have creative takes on the classic formula. Authors like David Farland, Harry Turtledove, L.A. Banks, Alan Dean Foste ...more
Feb 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I didn’t use to be a fan of anthologies, but I have to say over the last year or so they’ve really begun to grow on me.

The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination is no exception to this new trend in my mind.

Edited by John Joseph Adams, a veteran of over a dozen anthologies, The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination is full of some interesting short stories. Some of them are from author’s who I’ve liked over the years, including Austin Grossman, author of Soon I Will Be Invincible, Seanan
Feb 07, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

From Victor Frankenstein to Lex Luthor, from Dr. Moreau to Dr. Doom, readers have long been fascinated by insane plans for world domination and the madmen who devise them. Typically, we see these villains through the eyes of good guys. This anthology, however, explores the world of mad scientists and evil geniuses—from their own wonderfully twisted point of view.

Everybody loves villains. They’re bad; they always stir the pot; they’re much more fun than the good guys, even if we want to see the

Apr 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Ok so I should probably not *count* this as a book read, seeing how I only read the one short story ~ The Space Between, by Gabaldon ~ but did want to include it as a record for myself. I believe her collection of short stories will be available soon in the US.

I enjoyed this story very much as it brought back 'to life' two characters that we had thought long-dead from the Outlander books, Master Raymond and the Comte' St Germain. Won't give out any spoilers here, except to say that 1) I *knew*
Tasha Turner
Loved Incognito Apologizes An Itemized list by Austin Grossman had mean stitches the 2 times I read it. This is a must read. It the entire book had been at this level I would have been really happy instead of disappointed.

There are other stories I liked/were okay and 2 stories that I can't decide what I think of them. The rest I either read a bit of and skipped or they left me needing to take a break. I don't know if it was the narrative style of the book or something else. But this is one of tw
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination
Edited by John Joseph Adams
Performed by Stefan Rudnicki, Mary Robinette Kowal, and Justine Eyre

I'm not much of a short story person because I don't really like how they end just as I might be getting interested in them. That said, I really liked this collection of stories. I don't know if it's all the comic book movies being popular these days, but I was in just the right mood for something like this.

It wasn't all perfect. I really enjoyed the first h
All Things Urban Fantasy
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

I have a confession to make – I’m not usually a big fan of anthologies. I’m not sure if it’s because I get annoyed that there’s not more to the story or what, but short stories and I have never gotten along. So of course I went with an anthology for my first review here at All Things Urban Fantasy. Oops. Or at least oops is what I was thinking when I first sat down to start the book. Then I started reading and that oops quickly changed in to a grin as I
Miss Clark
Really Liked because of idea, execution, humor, etc. -

Professor Incognito Apologizes: An Itemized List by Austin Grossman

A really good idea, with some nice twists and a good focus, but too repetitive.

Letter to the Editor by David D. Levine

Again, great concept. A now-dead "supervillain" leaves behind an explanation of his deeds.

Island of a Loving Heart by Jeremiah Tolbert /Tobart (Unsure of the spelling)

Captain Justice Saves the Day by Genevieve Valentine

I loved Brenda's narration and the app
Jul 14, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: comedy, science-ish
If a wave of my magic centrifuge could add MY blurb to the back of this book, I totally would lift that 100lb puppy up and wave it around like a mad woman. I don't think I'm helping my case that scientists are people too... I expected something heartfelt, or at least some sort of rational justification for carting lab equipment to [insert ludicrous location like volcano, ocean, the moon, etc.], where you're absolutely certain no rep is going to uphold their service agreement. When you're centrif ...more
Matthew Barron
Aug 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was a great concept for an anthology, and great fun to see where different authors took the mad scientist theme. Some broke away from the hard sciences and included mad social scientists, mad mathematicians, and mad political scientists. Many stories in this collection are full of camp and superhero parody, but I was surprised to find drama and philosophy too. There were three stories in the middle of the book that I felt were quite slow. The Mad Scientist’s Daughter was a great idea, and I ...more
B.  Barron
Mar 29, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Foreword by Chris Claremont -- ***
Professor Incognito apologizes: an itemized list / Austin Grossman -- *** (Barely)
Father of the groom / Harry Turtledove -- ****
Laughter at the academy / Seanan McGuire -- ***** (LOVED IT!)
Letter to the editor / David D. Levine -- ***
Instead of a loving heart / Jeremiah Tolbert -- ****
The executor / Daniel H. Wilson -- ***
The angel of death has a business plan / Heather Lindsley -- ***
Homo perfectus / David Farland -- ***
Ancient equations / L.A. Banks -- ***
Sep 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the best books I've read in months. Nay--years. They say that the villain is the hero of his own story. Nowhere is that more true than the pages of this book. And, as fate would deem it, many times the villains story is extremely humorous. I had many laugh-out-loud moments while reading this book. Not a grin. Not a snicker. A full-blown laugh.

While most of the stories in this book were just... great (there's no other word for it), there are a few that were a little more of a stru
Paul Harmon
May 18, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I did this as an audio book.
Like all Anthologies it had highs and lows, It had some good stories but as I went on I became less interested.
The Worst for me were Modesitt's A more perfect Union which bored me badly, then getting worse LA Bank's Ancient equations...yeah lets resort to bores me. And finally with almost all of the stories coming in around a half hour give or take Diana Gabaldon having a 4 HOUR! story was something I dreaded from the beginning and saved it for last...I can't
Eric Means
I think my expectations may have been to blame here; really what I was expecting/hoping for was something similar to Emperor Mollusk versus The Sinister Brain: something very tongue in cheek that didn't take itself very seriously.

The first several stories fit in with that expectation rather well, but there are a handful of stories in the middle that just kind of drag. The longest story in the book -- one about the respective "daughters" of such luminaries as Dr. Frankenstein, Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyd
Jan 07, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a collection of mad scientist themed short stories from various authors. As with most such books, I like some, I get bored with others. I particularly enjoyed Professor Ignognito Apologizes: An Itemize list, by Austin Grossman, where our mad scientist apologizes for lying to his girlfriend, when she discovers his secret identity. The Laughter at the Academy, by Seanan McGuire was also a great story of mad social sciences slipping through the cracks of a global effort to monitor potential ...more
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John Joseph Adams is the series editor of BEST AMERICAN SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY. He is also the bestselling editor of many other anthologies, such as ROBOT UPRISINGS, DEAD MAN'S HAND, BRAVE NEW WORLDS,WASTELANDS, and THE LIVING DEAD. Recent and forthcoming books include WHAT THE #@&% IS THAT?, OPERATION ARCANA, PRESS START TO PLAY, LOOSED UPON THE WORLD, and THE APOCALYPSE TRIPTYCH (cons ...more
“The comic on the top of the stack catches my eye. Is this the end for Commander Justice? I wish, but of course it isn’t. I flip through the first few pages before tossing the candy-colored propaganda aside. “You really shouldn’t read this crap,” I tell Carl when he finally comes back into the room. “It can’t be doing anything for your confidence.” “I need to keep up with his latest crime-fighting techniques.” “No, you don’t. You need to shoot him in the face.” 1 likes
“It’s harder than you think for a being of pure scientific evil to hold regular office hours.” 1 likes
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