Galactic Empires

Zip Galactic Empires Overall this is a pretty solid anthology with a few misses and some really excellent hits My favourite of the collection was Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik but there were

Zip Galactic Empires Overall this is a pretty solid anthology, with a few misses and some really excellent hits. My favourite of the collection was Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik, but there were several others that really stuck with me. I have listed each story below with my impressions noted down as I read them.Winning Peace by Paul J. McAuley - Quite a bit of worldbuilding and character packed into a short story. Never underestimate the value of a good story.Night's Slow Poison by Ann Leckie - A story from a point of view outside the Radchaai giving another piece of the world of Imperial Radch.All the Painted Stars by Gwendolyn Clare - A lovely story of profound transformation and renewal of purpose. Firstborn by Brandon Sanderson - Enjoyable if somewhat unbelievable premise, although it felt like epic fantasy pushed into an SF setting.Riding the Crocodile by Greg Egan - Wonderful creative worldbuilding but a somewhat anti-climatic conclusion to a rather long and detailed story.The Lost Princess Man by John Barnes - Entertaining characters in this story of a con man who finds out one of his cons was actually the real deal.The Waiting Stars by Aliette de Bodard - A different take on the idea of sentient ships and the notion of control. An excellent example of short story craft.Alien Archeology by Neal Asher - Not a bad story, but even with it being very long and detailed there is no sense of completeness to it. This felt more like an excerpt from a novel rather than a piece of self-contained short fiction.The Muse of Empires Lost by Paul Berger - An ancient being fails to recognise the power of a young girl and her devotion to the sentient orbital she calls home. Ghostweight by Yoon Ha Lee - Written in an appealing and organic feeling style that made me think I should give Ninefox Gambit a try.A Cold Heart by Tobias S. Bucknell - An altered human is willing to do whatever it takes to retrieve his memories. Bucknell makes this story feel more personal by writing in the second person.The Colonel Returns to the Stars by Robert Silverberg - A lot of worldbuilding, backstory, and exposition had me expecting something more than it delivered by the end.The Impossibles by Kristine Kathryn Rusch - An interesting courtroom drama story set in the Retrieval Artist universe. One of my favourites in this anthology. Utriusque Cosmi by Robert Charles Wilson - A unique story about the cycle of memory and nature of existence. "I'm at the end of all things, which is really just another beginning."Section Seven by Jack Campbell (John G. Hemry) - A neat little socioeconomic black ops story. "...there are other ways than brute force to increase the price and trouble of non-conformity..."Invisible Empire of Ascending Light by Ken Scholes - This one felt a bit incomplete to me for some reason. The writing was fine, but the story just didn't catch me.The Man With the Golden Balloon by Robert Reed - Old and powerful aliens work inexplicable schemes across unimaginable lengths of time and space. I appreciated what Reed is trying to do, but thought it needed just a tiny bit more connective resolution at the end.Looking Through Lace by Ruth Nestvold - Excellent story about how perceptions about gender affect understanding. I loved this story, with a feel that reminded me of Dark Orbit by Caroline Ives Gilman.A Letter from the Emperor by Steve Rasnic Tem - I can sort of appreciate what the author was trying to do, but I found this one rather disjointed and hard to follow.The Wayfarer's Advice by Melinda Snodgrass - The title refers to the chapter, Wayfarer's All, from The Wind in the Willows (one of my favourite parts of that book), where the advice is given: "Take the Adventure, heed the call, now ere the irrevocable moment passes!" A predictably wistful story, but no less enjoyable for that. I loved this one.Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik - A sad and horrifying story of Imperialism by duplicity and stealth that is reminiscent of the film Avatar. Novik's gift for prose makes this a fantastic read: "I will not see my sisters again, whom I loved. Here we say that one who takes the long midnight voyage has leaped ahead in time, but to me it seems it is they who have traveled on ahead. I can no longer hear their voices when I am awake. I hope this will silence them in the night."Verthandi's Ring by Ian McDonald - Honestly I had to skim through the last part of this one. Too plotless and stream of consciousness-y for my taste.. Galactic Empires am Books Neil Clarke, publisher of the award winning Clarkesworld magazine, presents a collection of thought provoking and galaxy spanning array of galactic short science fiction.From E E Doc Smith s Lensman, to George Lucas Star Wars, the politics and process of Empire have been a major subject of science fiction s galaxy spanning fictions The idiom of the Galactic Empire alNeil Clarke, publisher of the award winning Clarkesworld magazine, presents a collection of thought provoking and galaxy spanning array of galactic short science fiction.From E E Doc Smith s Lensman, to George Lucas Star Wars, the politics and process of Empire have been a major subject of science fiction s galaxy spanning fictions The idiom of the Galactic Empire allows science fiction writers to ask and answer questions that are shorn of contemporary political ideologies and allegiances This simple narrative slight of hand allows readers and writers to see questions and answers from new and different perspectives.The stories in this book do just that What social, political, and economic issues do the organizing structure of empire address Often the size, shape, and fates of empires are determined not only by individuals, but by geography, natural forces, and technology As the speed of travel and rates of effective communication increase, so too does the size and reach of an Imperial bureaucracy Sic itur ad astra Thus one journeys to the stars At the beginning of the twentieth century, writers such as Kipling and Twain were at the forefront of these kinds of narrative observations, but as the century drew to a close, it was writers like Iain M Banks who helped make science fiction relevant That tradition continues today, with award winning writers like Ann Leckie, whose 2013 debut novel Ancillary Justice hinges upon questions of imperialism and empire.Here then is a diverse collection of stories that asks the questions that science fiction asks best Empire How Why And to what effect Table of Contents Winning Peace by Paul J McAuley Night s Slow Poison by Ann Leckie All the Painted Stars by Gwendolyn Clare Firstborn by Brandon Sanderson Riding the Crocodile by Greg Egan The Lost Princess Man by John Barnes The Waiting Stars by Aliette de Bodard Alien Archeology by Neal Asher The Muse of Empires Lost by Paul Berger Ghostweight by Yoon Ha Lee A Cold Heart by Tobias S Buckell The Colonel Returns to the Stars by Robert Silverberg The Impossibles by Kristine Kathryn Rusch Utriusque Cosmi by Robert Charles Wilson Section Seven by John G Hemry The Invisible Empire of Ascending Light by Ken Scholes The Man with the Golden Balloon by Robert Reed Looking Through Lace by Ruth Nestvold A Letter from the Emperor by Steve Rasnic Tem The Wayfarer s Advice by Melinda M Snodgrass Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik Verthandi s Ring by Ian McDonaldSkyhorse Publishing, under our Night Shade and Talos imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of titles for readers interested in science fiction space opera, time travel, hard SF, alien invasion, near future dystopia , fantasy grimdark, sword and sorcery, contemporary urban fantasy, steampunk, alternative history , and horror zombies, vampires, and the occult and supernatural , and much While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller, a national bestseller, or a Hugo or Nebula award winner, we are committed to publishing quality books from a diverse group of authors.. Neil Clarke is the Editor in Chief and Publisher of Clarkesworld and Forever Magazine His work at Clarkesworld has garnered three Hugo Awards for Best Semiprozine, a British Fantasy Award, and a World Fantasy Award He s also a four time Hugo Nominee for Best Editor Short Form and editor of several anthologies, including The Best Science Fiction of the Year series, Upgraded, and Galactic Empires Upcoming anthologies include The Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume 2, War Machines, and More Human Than Human He currently lives in NJ with his wife and two sons.. The best Book Galactic Empires Overall this is a pretty solid anthology, with a few misses and some really excellent hits. My favourite of the collection was Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik, but there were several others that really stuck with me. I have listed each story below with my impressions noted down as I read them.Winning Peace by Paul J. McAuley - Quite a bit of worldbuilding and character packed into a short story. Never underestimate the value of a good story.Night's Slow Poison by Ann Leckie - A story from a point of view outside the Radchaai giving another piece of the world of Imperial Radch.All the Painted Stars by Gwendolyn Clare - A lovely story of profound transformation and renewal of purpose. Firstborn by Brandon Sanderson - Enjoyable if somewhat unbelievable premise, although it felt like epic fantasy pushed into an SF setting.Riding the Crocodile by Greg Egan - Wonderful creative worldbuilding but a somewhat anti-climatic conclusion to a rather long and detailed story.The Lost Princess Man by John Barnes - Entertaining characters in this story of a con man who finds out one of his cons was actually the real deal.The Waiting Stars by Aliette de Bodard - A different take on the idea of sentient ships and the notion of control. An excellent example of short story craft.Alien Archeology by Neal Asher - Not a bad story, but even with it being very long and detailed there is no sense of completeness to it. This felt more like an excerpt from a novel rather than a piece of self-contained short fiction.The Muse of Empires Lost by Paul Berger - An ancient being fails to recognise the power of a young girl and her devotion to the sentient orbital she calls home. Ghostweight by Yoon Ha Lee - Written in an appealing and organic feeling style that made me think I should give Ninefox Gambit a try.A Cold Heart by Tobias S. Bucknell - An altered human is willing to do whatever it takes to retrieve his memories. Bucknell makes this story feel more personal by writing in the second person.The Colonel Returns to the Stars by Robert Silverberg - A lot of worldbuilding, backstory, and exposition had me expecting something more than it delivered by the end.The Impossibles by Kristine Kathryn Rusch - An interesting courtroom drama story set in the Retrieval Artist universe. One of my favourites in this anthology. Utriusque Cosmi by Robert Charles Wilson - A unique story about the cycle of memory and nature of existence. "I'm at the end of all things, which is really just another beginning."Section Seven by Jack Campbell (John G. Hemry) - A neat little socioeconomic black ops story. "...there are other ways than brute force to increase the price and trouble of non-conformity..."Invisible Empire of Ascending Light by Ken Scholes - This one felt a bit incomplete to me for some reason. The writing was fine, but the story just didn't catch me.The Man With the Golden Balloon by Robert Reed - Old and powerful aliens work inexplicable schemes across unimaginable lengths of time and space. I appreciated what Reed is trying to do, but thought it needed just a tiny bit more connective resolution at the end.Looking Through Lace by Ruth Nestvold - Excellent story about how perceptions about gender affect understanding. I loved this story, with a feel that reminded me of Dark Orbit by Caroline Ives Gilman.A Letter from the Emperor by Steve Rasnic Tem - I can sort of appreciate what the author was trying to do, but I found this one rather disjointed and hard to follow.The Wayfarer's Advice by Melinda Snodgrass - The title refers to the chapter, Wayfarer's All, from The Wind in the Willows (one of my favourite parts of that book), where the advice is given: "Take the Adventure, heed the call, now ere the irrevocable moment passes!" A predictably wistful story, but no less enjoyable for that. I loved this one.Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik - A sad and horrifying story of Imperialism by duplicity and stealth that is reminiscent of the film Avatar. Novik's gift for prose makes this a fantastic read: "I will not see my sisters again, whom I loved. Here we say that one who takes the long midnight voyage has leaped ahead in time, but to me it seems it is they who have traveled on ahead. I can no longer hear their voices when I am awake. I hope this will silence them in the night."Verthandi's Ring by Ian McDonald - Honestly I had to skim through the last part of this one. Too plotless and stream of consciousness-y for my taste.

About Author

  1. Neil Clarke Paul McAuley Ann Leckie Gwendolyn Clare Brandon Sanderson Greg Egan John Barnes Aliette de Bodard

    Neil Clarke is the Editor in Chief and Publisher of Clarkesworld and Forever Magazine His work at Clarkesworld has garnered three Hugo Awards for Best Semiprozine, a British Fantasy Award, and a World Fantasy Award He s also a four time Hugo Nominee for Best Editor Short Form and editor of several anthologies, including The Best Science Fiction of the Year series, Upgraded, and Galactic Empires Upcoming anthologies include The Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume 2, War Machines, and More Human Than Human He currently lives in NJ with his wife and two sons.

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Galactic Empires Comment

  1. Overall this is a pretty solid anthology, with a few misses and some really excellent hits My favourite of the collection was Seven Years from Home by Naomi Novik, but there were several others that really stuck with me I have listed each story below with my impressions noted down as I read them.Winning Peace by Paul J McAuley Quite a bit of worldbuilding and character packed into a short story Never underestimate the value of a good story.Night s Slow Poison by Ann Leckie A story from a point o [...]


  2. An amazing anthology of space opera SF with an amazing scope.I ve included my thoughts on each of the short stories in my updates while reading this over the last few months, but I should call out some favorites All the Painted Stars by Gwendolyn Clare is a strong story of a really alien creature falling in with a Star Trek like human crew and engaging with them A very cool perspective on a story that s been done before, but made quite fresh by the conceit The Waiting Stars by Aliette de Boddard [...]


  3. Galactic Empires is an anthology, published in 2017 and edited byNeil Clarke, presenting twenty two stories with individual publication dates ranging from 2003 to 2014 Each story features a galactic empire in some fashion, whether as the driving focus for the plot or as the background informing a character s behavior The anthology itself covers a broad range of styles and themes, ensuring that there are sure to be at least a few stories that will capture the interest and imagination of any scien [...]


  4. Originally published at Risingshadow.Do you enjoy reading science fiction stories about galactic empires Are you fascinated by visits to distant planets Or are you perhaps interested in imaginative space opera stories If you answered yes to all of these questions, Galactic Empires will be of interest to you, because it will entertain and thrill you in various ways.Galactic Empires edited by Neil Clarke is an ambitious and impressive anthology of science fiction stories about galactic empires It [...]


  5. A pretty good anthology I read 15 of the stories, really liked 5 of them The stories I didn t read were either novella length I d prefer my short fiction to be something I can read in one sitting or didn t catch my interest quickly enough.Favourites Ann Leckie Night s Slow PoisonBrandon Sanderson FirstbornJohn G Hemry Section SevenSteve Tem Letter from the EmperorMelinda Snodgrass Wayfarer s Advice


  6. I liked the following stories about 45 % of the total there are 22 stories in the anthology Winning Peace 4Night s Slow Poison 3All the Painted Stars 5Firstborn 3Riding the Crocodile 3The Colonel Returns to the Stars 4The Impossibles 4Section Seven 4Looking Through Lace 3A Letter from the Emperor 5



  7. I haven t had the greatest track record of picking good anthologies to read Most of them garner something like a 3 star rating a mixed up kind of meh I m also rather picky about my science fiction Too hard and I get bored, too soft and it often gets too romantic for me.What Neil Clarke has done here is create a collection that hits just the right spot with the right balance Obviously, everything is galactic whether it s a human settled planet, or humans somewhere in space, or even no humans at a [...]


  8. Themed anthologies offer a special opportunity Get one on a subject you really like Read the stories by the authors you already know love THEN read the rest of the stories You won t necessarily care for all of them But the chance of discovering a new or even multiple new authors is high and definitely worth taking I ve always dearly loved space opera and I especially like stories set in imperial worlds So Galactic Empires was indeed a prime opportunity for me Ann Leckie, Tobias S Buckell, Robert [...]


  9. I m a tough sell on collections, as the quality or interest of the contents are always variable This one comes in about average I d give an A rating to Winning Peace, Alien Archeology with an extra Penny Royal and prador, ugh , The Impossibles, and Looking Through Lace On the other hand, Verthandi s Ring and The Colonel Returns to the Stars were bores, Utriusque Cosmi was a scenario, not a story and The Man with the Golden Balloon, Invisible Empire of Ascending Light, Ghostweight, The Waiting St [...]


  10. 3.5 Stars rounded up This is a collection of science fiction short stories with the common thread being empire The rating reflects the overall quality of the stories, not any single story My purpose for reading a short story collection was two fold The topic of empires is intriguing I wanted to sample the contemporary writing of authors who have been recognized for their work in the hopes that I might discover a new author to read.Far and away my favorite story in the collection is Gwendolyn Cla [...]


  11. Above all, this is a book of hope Hope that humanity can escape the gravity well of our home planet, hope that there is a place for us in the universe, hope that we will become than just another sentient species that consumes itself to extinction.Galactic Empires explores possibilities futures that contain the best humanity can hope for I read so much dystopian sci fi that it was an absolute joy to revel in the futures imagined in this collection Even then bleakest of possibilities shout with t [...]


  12. Years ago I read a two volume anthology with the same title edited by Brian Aldiss which Clarke references in his introduction that still remains on my bookshelf along with a multitude of other books garnered from a 30 year membership in SFBC Memories of the collection made grabbing the Kindle edition of Neil Clarke s anthology of the same name and theme a no brainer and the quality of the stories made me glad I did Certainly there is some variability but there really isn t a story without merit [...]


  13. I have just read two of the stories on offer and both had a very different feel to it, one was boring the other amazing Night s Slow Poison by Ann Leckie 1 5 While it s set in the same universe as that of Ancillary Justice series of Ann Leckie, there is really no connection with the series This short story was clumsy, felt deliberately made difficult to read The world making had potential but being a short story it was not explored, instead, we get a very run down human drama Seven Years from Ho [...]


  14. I didn t love every story in this collection, but I loved a lot of them And if you re serious about science fiction, many of the stories are by authors on your must read list Of course, you might have read the stories elsewhere, but it s probably easier to get this book from the library and read the stories than to look up all the stories first and verify that you ve read them elsewhere.


  15. Some pretty good stories, though of course there are a couple that weren t to my tastes Not necessarily bad, I m sure someone would find them entertaining, but for me they had an overwhelming feeling of so what Brandon Sanderson had the stand out story to my mind, with solid, interesting characters and a slowly building tension leading to a smart, surprising end.


  16. Short story novella collections are generally hit or miss with me The following authors stories resonated with me right away and never stopped Kristine Kathryn RuschRobert ReedJohn G Hemry Jack Campbell Brandon SandersonTheir stuff is all at least four star quality, but I rounded down to three because there were a lot of stories that I just did not care for or about.












  17. Very well chosen collection of stories Not all of them are 5 star material, but the ensemble is extremely well balanced, and a few are real show stoppers Ann Leckie has a good spin off on the Ancillary series, the piece by Gwendolyn Clare is nice, Robert Charles Wilson spins our head in a weird way, but frankly, read them all My personal favorite is Looking Through Lace by Ruth Nestvold, an author I need to read about, probably.


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