An unabridged audio collection of the “best of the best” science-fiction stories written in 2011 by current and emerging masters of the genre, edited by Allan Kaster, as narrated by top voice talents.
In “Dying Young”, by Peter M. Ball, cyborgs, clones, and post-humans collide with a dragon bent on revenge in a post-apocalyptic space western. “Martian Heart”, by John Barnes, chronicles a teenage couple taken to Mars as indentured servants in a “rags-to-riches” tale. In “Canterbury Hollow”, by Chris Lawson, two lovers on a planet orbiting a killer sun share their few remaining weeks together before they die. “The Choice”, by Paul McAuley, set in the author’s Jackaroo universe, follows two boys who set sail to investigate a beached alien vessel on the English coast. In “After the Apocalypse”, by Maureen McHugh, a mother and daughter traverse a ravaged U.S. in a tale that takes on Cormac McCarthy’s, The Road from a female perspective. “Purple”, by Robert Reed, tells of a blind and maimed young man convalescing in an off-world menagerie of wayward alien species, prior to returning to Earth. In “Laika’s Ghost”, by Karl Schroeder, a Russian and an American search the steppes of the former Soviet Union for metastable weapons that terrorists could use to make nuclear bombs. “Bit Rot”, by Charles Stross, follows post-humans struggling to survive after their generation ship is struck by a Magnetar ray in this clever zombies-in-space tale. In “For I Have Laid Me Down on the Stone of Loneliness and I’ll Not Be Back Again”, by Michael Swanwick, Irishmen plot to strike back against alien occupiers by enlisting an Irish American tourist to their cause. Finally, Steve Rasnic Tem tells of a young man awakened from suspended animation on a future Earth with the technological know-how of plant-like aliens in “At Play in the Fields”.