cover image Year's Best Science Fiction

Year's Best Science Fiction

Gardner Dozois. St. Martin's Press, $13.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-312-06008-4

Dozois's solid collection of 25 tales drawn from those published during 1990 demonstrates the diversity of the genre's styles and interests. The hero of James Patrick Kelly's ``Mr. Boy'' is a futuristic Peter Pan who is genetically altered to remain physically prepubescent; when Mom has herself converted into an 11-story replica of the Statue of Liberty, he learns that mother love can be a very hollow thing. As much science mystery as science fiction, Charles Sheffield's ``A Braver Thing'' is related by a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who examines himself, his work and his memories of the more brilliant but profoundly disturbed friend who--quite literally, in this case--made it all possible. In Bruce Sterling's ``We See Things Differently,'' the U.S. and U.S.S.R. have declined, and the Arab Caliphate is ascendant when a holy warrior for Islam takes the field against the grassroots power of American rock and roll. Connie Willis delivers her SF with a lighter touch in ``Cibola,'' the story of a Denver journalist assigned to follow an eccentric old woman to the Seven Golden Cities sought by Coronado. (July)