We See a Different Frontier: A Postcolonial Speculative Fiction Anthology

Edited by Fabio Fernandes and Djibril al-Ayad. Futurefire.net (www.futurefire.net), $14 trade paper (213p) ISBN 978-0-9573975-2-1
Fernandes and al-Ayad, editors of webzine The Future Fire, have compiled an innovative and trenchant anthology of 16 postcolonial speculative fiction stories. In Sunny Moraine’s haunting “A Heap of Broken Images,” an alien serving as a tour guide to snap-happy humans tries to come to terms with the genocide of his people. Sofia Samatar’s “I Stole the D.C.’s Eyeglass” is a vivid, moving tale about unexpected consequences, the love between sisters, and ways of resisting colonialism. Another highlight is Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s well-crafted “Them Ships,” which explores class divisions through a cynical, practical protagonist from Mexico’s slums, who sees little point in joining a rebellion against her alien overlords. Though uneven in quality, all the stories, as Aliette de Bodard says in the incisive preface, center on the voices “of those whom others would make into aliens and blithely ignore or conquer or enlighten.” This is not just an interesting and entertaining collection, but also a necessary, convincing critique of the colonialist tropes that mark many of speculative fiction’s genre conventions. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 06/10/2013
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