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Home » Books » Fiction & Literature » Fantasy » General

Year's Best Fantasy: No. 8

By David G. Hartwell (Edited by), Kathryn Cramer (Edited by)

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Format: Paperback / softback, 375 pages
Published In: United States, 01 September 2008
Continuing to showcase the most compelling new fiction of the genre, the anticipated eighth installment to this annual compendium presents an impressive line-up of best-selling authors and rising stars of fantasy. Collecting the essential fantasy stories of 2007, this engaging volume will excite fans and serve as a reference guide for those looking to sample the top writers in the genre. This year's contributors include international best-seller Neil Gaiman, influential heroic fantasy writer Michael Moorcock, historical fantasy novelist Kage Baker, classic genre wordsmiths Garth Nix and Tad Williams, and many others.

About the Author

David G. Hartwell is a senior editor at Tor/Forge Books and the publisher of the New York Review of Science Fiction. A recipient of the Hugo, World Fantasy, and Eaton awards, he is the author of Age of Wonders, editor of The World Treasury of Science Fiction, editor of the Year's Best Fantasy series, and co-editor of two anthologies of the best Canadian science ficti0on, Northern Stars and Northern Suns. Kathryn Cramer is an author, editor, artist, and photographer who lives in Westport, New York. She is the World Fantasy Award--winning editor of The Architecture of Fear and the co-editor of the anthologies The Ascent of Wonder, The Hard SF Renaissance, and the Year's Best Science Fiction series.


"This volume is essential reading for any fantasy aficionado." -- Publishers Weekly"

EAN: 9781892391766
ISBN: 1892391767
Publisher: Tachyon Publications
Dimensions: 21.69 x 15.24 x 2.59 centimetres (0.41 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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1 review(s)
All Reviews
Richard on
An anthology that is a bit variable, two standouts, a few good stories, but a lot of 3s and not enough 3.5s, so this comes in a 3.46 only. The only writer meta-fiction perhaps should only be by Terry Pratchett, or have Batman and Sgt. Rock in it, to be at all memorable.

I disagree with them that the Dozois/Dann Dark Alchemy was a good book, to start with - so that is part of it, although they did pick the two best stories from there, the Hand and Gaiman stories. Given that book is for kids, and if Ellen Datlow has got some more stuff up her sleeve in Inferno like Laird Barron's work, then the latter rips the head off the former in your fantasy no-holds barred wrestling bout. Especially as it doesn't have the child handicap.

The introduction is short, with the editors saying they prefer to spend more time and space on author intros and information - which they are certainly good at - but there are only a couple of paragraphs each, here.

I'd probably pick an extra story over these if putting together the book, too, but it seems none of the Year's Best publishers are using the web as effectively as they could. If the editors have a little more to say, include a url in the book, and put it up. No lack of space on the internet, publisher people (and this has been done with The Space Opera Renaissance, another of the books from this team-up, to a degree). Googleborg loves content. For a series coming out every year, the excuse that haven't had time to get around to it doesn't really wash, either.

Buy book, get bonus extras, or whatever.

As far as the stories go, Chadbourn's Elizabethan super-spy Will Swyfte is pretty cool, and according to the Pyr blog there will be a series of books featuring his antics, so apparently a few people like this bloke.

Laird Barron has written another story that utilises his strength in trending towards the science-horror of a vaguely Lovecraftian flavour, but maybe a bit more grass and not quite so nasty this time. Call it fantasy if you want, too, works for all 3, here.

Hand and Cadigan provide some good nasty ends, though, balanced by some fun from Gaiman and Pratt.

There's also an Elric story that I had never heard of included here, a pleasant surprise.

Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Paper Cuts Scissors - Holly Black
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : A Portrait in Ivory - Michael Moorcock
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The Witch's Headstone - Neil Gaiman
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The Ruby Incomparable - Kage Baker
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : And Such Small Deer - Chris Roberson
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Unpossible - Daryl Gregory
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Winter's Wife - Elizabeth Hand
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The King of the Djinn - David Ackert and Benjamin Rosenbaum
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Stilled Life - Pat Cadigan
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Poison - Bruce McAllister
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Who Slays the Gyant Wounds the Beast - Mark Chadbourn
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Under the Bottom of the Lake - Jeffrey Ford
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : A Diorama of the Infernal Regions or the Devil's Ninth Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Question - Andy Duncan
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Don't Ask - M. Rickert
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The Stranger's Hands - Tad Williams
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Soul Case - Nalo Hopkinson
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Sir Hereward and Mister Fitz Go to War Again - Garth Nix
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Debatable Lands - Liz Williams
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The Forest - Laird Barron
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : The Great White Bed - Don Webb
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Dance of Shadows - Fred Chappell
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Grander than the Sea - T.A. Pratt
Year's Best Fantasy 08 : Princess Lucinda and the Hound of the Moon - Theodora Goss

Dewey employed girlfriend rescue.

4 out of 5

Elric, busted.

3.5 out of 5

Visibly grave talk.

4 out of 5

Married and boring.

2.5 out of 5

Giant Rat of Sumatra crosses over for Van Helsing.

3.5 out of 5

Hoarding relief.

3.5 out of 5

A rocky end for local entrepreneur's saga.

4 out of 5

Time drag

3 out of 5

Busted friendship's rocky end.

4 out of 5

Lizard witch.

3 out of 5

Dead poet High Society, Swyftely.

4.5 out of 5

Vincent is bored.

2.5 out of 5

Canvassing a wizard.

3 out of 5

Wolf kid recovery.

3.5 out of 5

Dangerous wizard desire.

3 out of 5

Old witches pitch well, defensively.

4 out of 5

Lizard lancer mercenary godbothering, no dummy.

3.5 out of 5

Beast waste.

3 out of 5

Dying of cancer won't bug me, at least until the sun goes out, anyway.

4.5 out of 5

Legless trap.

3 out of 5

This thief has no Hawkman in pursuit.

3 out of 5

Shark god, squid god, close enough for crazy sorcerer stings.

4 out of 5

Dog of a ride.

3 out of 5

3.5 out of 5

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