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on 30 July 2010
A selection including some of the best of 20 years worth of stories that have been featured in Gardner Dozois anthologies. It is a great tome in which can be discovered authors of SF and also others genres. Indeed a lot of the stories cross/blur genre bounderies into the realms of fantasy, dark fantasy, historical fiction, crime etc. and even if a particular story didn't entirely appeal to me it was still recognisably a high quality piece of literature.

A couple of exceptional stories;
Blood Music - Greg Bear (Expanded into 'Blood Music')
Bruce Sterling - Dinner in Audoghast
Mike Resnick - Kirinyaga
Robert Reed - Guest of Honor
Greg Egan - Wang's Carpets (Expanded into 'Diaspora')
Geoff Ryman - Have Not Have (Expanded into 'Air')
Ian Macleod - Breathmoss

A couple of exceptions which, for me, didn't click;
Bears Discover Fire - Terry Bisson
Bears suddenly learn how to make camp fires.
Flying Saucer Rock and Roll - Howard Waldrop
Perhaps a sentimental addition.
The Lincoln Train - Maureen F. McHugh
A bit lost on me, although I got the gist.

This is the U.K. version of the anthology and came with 2 additional stories to the original American release (Peter Hamilton - Footvote, Alastair Reynolds - Zima Blue).
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on 12 May 2010
This book is a monster. 778 pages of SF-goodness.

The anthology is culled from 20 years of the "Best SF of the year" anthologies. As such, whilst there'll probably be the odd story you dislike. It's a wide-ranging anthology. However, I would think that (mostly) the stories that you dislike are based on personal preference, rather than because they are particularly *bad.*

Reviewing all the stories individually would be a bit much, so I've listed them: it's a best of best, so this should give an idea of how interested you'll be.

However, there were a couple of stories of particular interest.

Greg Bear's "Blood Music" for example was expanded to the excellent novel of the same name (Blood Music (Gollancz S.F.)) An excellent story about an unintended post-human future.

William Sanderson (who was previously unknown to me) writes an excellent fun story about what would've happened if one William Shakespeare had ended up in the New World by mistake.

Wang's Carpets was a particularly interesting first contact story. It's not quite what you'd expect.

Overall though, an excellent anthology and at the price, highly recommended!

The stories are as follows:

Blood Music - Greg Bear
A Cabin on the Coast - Gene Wolfe
Salvador - Lucius Shepard
Trinity - Nancy Kress
Flying Saucer Rock and Roll - Howard Waldrop
Dinner in Audoghast - Bruce Sterling
Roadside Rescue - Pat Cadigan
Snow - Jon Crowley
The Winter Market - William Gibson
The Pure Product - John Kessel
Stable Strategies for Middle Management - Elleen Gunn
Kirinyaga - Mike Resnick
Tales From the Venia Woods - Robert Silverberg
Bears Discover Fire - Terry Bisson
Even the Queen - Connie Willis
Guest of Honor - Robert Reed
None So Blind - Joe Haldeman
Mortimer Gray's History of Death - Brian Stableford
The Lincoln Train - Maureen F. McHugh
Wang's Carpets - Greg Egan
Coming of Age in Karhide - Ursula K. LeGuin
The Dead - Michael Swanick
Recording Angel - Ian McDonald
A Dry Quiet War - Tony Daniel
The Undiscovered - William Sanderson
Second Skin - Paul J. McAuley
Story of Your Life - Ted Chiang
People Came From Earth - Stephen Baxter
The Wedding Album - David Marusek
10 to the power 16 to 1 - James Patrick Kelly
Daddy's World - Walter Jon Williams
The Real World - Steven Utley
Have Not Have - Geoff Ryman
Lobsters - Charles Stross
Breathmoss - Ian R. Macloed
Lambing Season - Molly Gloss
Footvote - Peter F. Hamilton
The Fluted Girl - Paolo Bacigalupi
Zima Blue - Alastair Reynolds
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on 30 August 2009
'The Guardian' reviewed this a few months ago and recommended it as worth having. I waited until I could get a second-hand copy (from one of Amazon's market place sellers), and as I had a long series of flights this Summer, I knew this collection would keep me absorbed.

I have been a fan of Sci-Fi since I was a boy, and have always enjoyed the skill that goes into the short story form. These did not disappoint. Even those stories which were not to my taste (veering toward the fantasy, or with unconventional narrators) stayed on my mind after finishing, while a good number of these are undoubtedly some of the most interesting stories I have read.

It's a very large book, with a wide selection, so I guarantee that if you're a fan of Science Fiction, or even just someone who likes to indulge occasionally, you'll find items of interest.
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on 25 May 2009
I picked this up because I wanted a few short stories that I could pick up and read without having to start a new book; for this it has been perfect!
I have not read all of the stories in this anthology but those which I have read have ranged from good to totally mind blowing!

The anthology contatins works from many famous SF writers and some of the stories are very memorable. I would reccomend it for people who like science fiction and want to read some good short stories from well known SF writers. Though I highly enjoyed the stories I read, I do find it more satisfying to read a full length novel, but this is especially ideal if you are on the go or particularly busy.

Thanks for reading my review!
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VINE VOICEon 19 September 2014
I won't be buying at that price.
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on 17 July 2011
Maybe I had been spoilt by accessible and entertaining science fiction in the 1970s, but I found that too many of the stories were too badly written and too offbeat to be an enjoyable book. It is as if quality of writing equated with the obscure rather than a good story. It does contain the odd gem, but too many I found to be laboured reading with very thin story lines.
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