Engineering Infinity Paperback – 6 Jan 2011
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About the Author
Johnathan Strahan is an editor and anthologist. He co-edited The Year's Best Australian Science Fiction and Fantasy anthology series in 1997 and 1998. He is also the reviews editor of Locus. He lives in Perth, Western Australia with his wife and their two daughters. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The stories are nicely varied - the foreword discusses them in the context of "Hard SF" but admits that not all of them satisfy the criterion in the classic sense. I have to admit I don't really care about that, I simply enjoyed them as stories - there's a dash of quantum time travel, some deep space stuff, some pessimistic visions of the future (I liked Rusch's account of a marriage falling apart against a background of creepy genetic augmentation - all at a price, of course - which tells a very human and familiar story in a new and fresh way).
The stories are all high quality, with the best easily worth 5 stars, and only a couple below 4. Those that especially stood out for me were (beware: a couple of spoilers follow) "Malak" by Watts, a sort of recast ...Read more ›
What about the stories? "[S]ome of the stories are classic hard SF, some are not. [I]t is part of the ongoing discussion about what science fiction is in the 21st century." Since the stories are not related in any systematic way, perhaps the collection is a celebration of diversity. I am never sure what people mean by that, either. Ah, well. The stories are all pretty good, each in its own way. Four stood out for me:
Hannu Rajaniemi's "The Server and the Dragon" has no human characters. But it is rich with motives and emotions that humans have no trouble understanding. From two, one.
Robert Reed's "Mantis" is two stories, edited. A man and a woman exercise and watch another man and woman meet on the street outside. Between the two couples a high tech window subtly alters what they see of each other. Oh, and there's a bug.
In Gwyneth Jones' "The Ki-anna" a fraternal twin investigates his sister's death on a war-torn planet. An accident or a murder or the self-sacrifice of a seasoned anthropologist?
In John Barnes' "The Birds and the Bees and the Gasoline Trees" the growth of a huge undersea structure is investigated by a nearly-indestructible genetically engineered woman who has been recalled to Earth from the environment she was designed for.Read more ›
The heartbreaking "Watching the Music Dance", a story of a little girl damaged by illegal implants which boost her musical ability, could easily have been written by a modern Phillip K Dick, using science fiction as an instrument to explore current issues. In this case, this is a tale of the damage over zealous parents can inflict on themselves and their offspring.
"Mercies", by Gregory Benford, on the other hand recalls classic Asimov, with a tale of a time travelling assassin, changing alternative pasts by despatching historical serial killers before they commit their crimes.
Thirdly, Stephen Baxter mines a very British seam reminiscent of Arthur C Clarke with the "Invasion of Venus", a story of mysterious alien incursion into the Solar System, seemingly oblivious of the human race.
Moving forward (in terms of writers), "Malak", a stunningly good tale about a military drone given a conscience, is very much, in its combination of very near future and high technological focus, on the Cyberpunk playing field.
That Cyberpunk feel is also to be found in "Laika's ghost", which is additionally reminiscent of Ken Macleod or Adam Roberts, bringing in themes of post-Soviet revolutionary politics.
Probably the most outright entertainment is to be had from Charles Stross's "Bit Rot".Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The book isn't quite what it describes itself to be, some of the short stories contained within are decent but thye don't relly match with the description given on the blurb. Read morePublished 17 months ago by robert
First book i'v read since flat stanley aged 7 (except magazines) and now i'm 33 and loved all but a couple of the stories in this book. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Ben Gosling
Good collection of short sf stories - none are actually bad, but I didn't consider any of them astounding either. Read morePublished on 1 Sept. 2012 by J. Beresford
My parents suggested i read some books about engineers before i settled on my engineering course at university, this was a good excuse to buy a new charles stross bookPublished on 27 Aug. 2012 by josh
Some of the stories seem more sci-fi than others. Some are verging on the metaphysical and leave you guessing as to what they are about.Published on 22 May 2012 by Stephen J. Wilson
As I have stated more than once in previous reviews, I am a great fan of short stories and they are one of the best means to experience unfamiliar authors. Read morePublished on 1 Jan. 2012 by Willy Eckerslike
I had high hopes for this book. Not only is it edited by Jonathan Strahan, whose The New Space Opera I enjoyed earlier in the month, it also has a new short story by the splendid... Read morePublished on 1 Jun. 2011 by D. R. Cantrell
Absolutely superb collection, showcasing the best of current cutting-edge science fiction.
Peter Watts - Malak
A mobile robotic war machine gets an upgrade: a... Read more
This book contains stories from some of the best si-fi writers that are publishing now. If you like to be streached and made to think when you read try this.Published on 24 April 2011 by Jovi Fan