cover image Escape Pod: The Science Fiction Anthology

Escape Pod: The Science Fiction Anthology

Edited by Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya. Titan, $15.95 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-1-78909-501-2

The 15 pieces in this diverse, enjoyable anthology—all of which were featured in episodes of the Escape Pod podcast—showcase the wide variety of ideas the short science fiction story can accommodate. Kameron Hurley’s “Citizens of Elsewhere” puts a sharp, modern spin on the time travel paradox tale in its account of the challenges faced by a corps of time-jumping midwives. N.K. Jemisin, in “Give Me Cornbread or Give Me Death,” and Maurice Broaddus, in “City of Refuge,” both speculate on racially fraught futures, while Ken Liu, in “An Advanced Reader’s Picture Book of Comparative Cognition,” poignantly reflects on the interconnectedness of human and alien species. Some stories were written specifically for the podcast, and readers will surely hear the distinctive voices of the characters in their heads in tales such as T. Kingfisher’s “Report of Dr. Hollowmas on the Incident at Jackrabbit Five,” presented as a pedantically logical AI’s interview of a laconic space veterinarian. The result is sure to please. (Nov.)