Review of Asimov’s Sept/Oct 2017

Cover of the Sept/Oct 2017 double issue

As this 40th anniversary year continues, it seems as if the bi-monthly issues are of two types. One type contains mainly longer works, and consequently fewer of them. The other type contains mainly shorter works, and consequently more of them. (The page count is constant.)

In general I prefer SF stories at the longer length, so I should prefer those issues of Asimov’s that contain fewer but longer stories. But so far this year I have a clear preference for the issues that have contained a broad spread of short stories.

Fortunately, the Sept/Oct issue contains no fewer than 10 short stories along with 4 novelettes. And it’s fun. Tim McDaniel’s “Squamous and Eldritch Get a Yard Sale Bargain” is as comic as its title suggests. “Zigeuner” is one of Harry Turtledove’s alternate history stories, and it’s a good one (although I did guess the twist before it was revealed). Allen Steele’s “An Incident in the Literary Life of Nathan Arkwright” is a solid addition to that series, and Michael Swanwick’s “Universe Box” is typically wild.

Another solid issue.