Science Fiction || Our young narrator has many skins. Shedding and taking on new ones help them to find their way back home after leaving to avoid more tragedies and assaults. But what price do they have to pay to acquire the one true skin that fits the best?
"The Last Novelist (or A Dead Lizard in the Yard)" by Matthew Kressel is a science fiction story about a dying writer who is trying to finish one final novel on the distant planet he settles on for his demise. His encounter with a young girl triggers a last burst of creativity.
Fantasy || After an unusual public incident in which the frail, elderly president is revitalized, geckos are now considered to bring good luck. At the Ministry of Merit, Fon is secretly in charge of building the next Gecko Cannon for the family of president Bankim’s eightieth birthday. She is honored to be assigned this duty and works diligently to create and deliver this extraordinary machine.
Hard Science Fiction, Science Fiction || In "The Virtual Swallows of Hog Island," a programmer finds himself working for the self-proclaimed "Bad-Boy of Virtual-Reality Therapy.” While his boss is breaking new ground and breaking the rules and his coworkers are engaging in questionable uses of the latest technology, the lonely programmer is in a state of mourning over his deep personal losses and must figure out his own form of therapy.
Romantic, Science Fiction || Moena lives in a world of her own making, sealed off from the deadly pathogens of Bangalore in her own personal biome. But when she meets Rahul, a beautiful man working to clean up his city, her need for him draws her into danger. She will risk her health and her work to satisfy her lust for Rahul, and may find love along the way.
Fairy Tales and Folklore, Fantasy || "The Story of Kao Yu” is a new fantasy short story by the legendary Peter S. Beagle which tells of an aging judge traveling through rural China and of a criminal he encounters. Of the story, Beagle says it “comes out of a lifelong fascination with Asian legendry — Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, Indonesian — all drawn from cultures where storytelling, in one form of another, remains a living art. As a young writer I loved everything from Robert van Gulik's Judge Dee mysteries to Lafcadio Hearn's translations of Japanese fairytales and many lesser-known fantasies. Like my story ‘The Tale of Junko and Sayuri,’ ‘The Story of Kao Yu’ is a respectful imitation of an ancient style, and never pretends to be anything else. But I wrote it with great care and love, and I'm still proud of it.“
Fantasy, Young Adult || After the collapse of civilization Nora and her family live a quiet life in the Midwestern Plains until a great fiery god of the sky descends and makes her an irresistible offer—an offer that will take her away from those she loves forever. "Dragons of Tomorrow" is a standalone story by the author of the Stranje House series, available now from Tor Teen.
Dark Fantasy, Fantasy || Dino is a documentary filmmaker, haunted by the ghost of his ex-girlfriend who was killed in a car crash while with another man. As Dino shoots his latest documentary on the vandalism occurring in the woods of his hometown, he tries to move on from her unexpected death. But when his life starts to look up, the ghost encroaches on his property. The focus of the film begins to blur as the lens of the camera shifts onto Dino, the director succumbing to his ghostly obsession.
Science Fiction || "The Loud Table" by Jonathan Carroll is an sf-fantasy about four elderly men who regularly hang out. One of the men is worried that he’s getting Alzheimer’s, but the truth might be even more discomforting.
Dark Fantasy, Fantasy, Horror || Baltimore isn't safe. Not even for the predatory meat that stalks its nights. Searching for victims who won't be missed, meat doesn't feel regret or pain—only thirst. But the meat remembers something more... doesn't it? is there more to eternal life than finding another drink?